The faces and voices of Occupy - Page 3

A mechanic, a nurse, a leukemia patient, a cat owner, and a pair of queer activists: Don't believe the hype, they are occupiers too

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Jessica Martin: "My mother stood on the steps [of the Lincoln Memorial] in D.C. with Martin Luther King."
GUARDIAN PHOTO BY REBECCA BOWE

When Michael Moore came by the plaza, Two Horses was impressed. "It wasn't so much what he said but how he came shuffling up with no entourage, no security, no assistant with a clipboard." He would, however, like to see more communication between Occupy camps, maybe a livestream video screen to see other cities.

He seems quite at home in his surroundings. "My goal is to look as permanent as I can," he said, the corners of his mouth turning up crookedly, happily. (Donohue)

 

The healers

Med tent volunteers from the nurses' union do it for the patients

Guardian photo by Mirissa Neff

Melissa Thompson has a kid who's looking at college options; she hopes her family can figure out a way to afford education in a state where public university tuition continues to rise.

But that's not the only reason she's at Occupy SF. On a cloudy Friday morning, Thompson sat outside the encampment's med tent, where she tended to cuts, changed the dressing on wounds, and provided socks, blankets, and tools for basic hygiene. It's her trade — she's a nurse, one of the many California Nurses Association members sick of cuts to the country's public and private health options who were eager to lend their services to the movement.

She's also one of the determined crew that enlivens Occupy Walnut Creek. What's it like out there? "It's been good," she assured us, brightly. "We're on the corner, by the Bank of America? We've had great reactions at Walnut Creek."

Thompson said she got involved because "I love being a nurse, number one." Corporate greed, she said, has led to cuts in her patients' insurance, leaving them to make tough decisions between feeding their family and filling the prescription for their post-dialysis medications.

She said he hopes the politicians are listening to Occupy. "I don't understand what the problem is. They need to open up their eyes and see how they've damaged us." (Donohue)


The fabulous

Li Morales and Molly Goldberg talk about Queer Occupy

Queers have long been resisting the ravages of the one percent on the 99 percent. Resistance has looked like coming together on our own, on our own terms, with our own names, genders, and chosen families. Like the (decolonize) occupations in San Francisco, Oakland, around the country and world, our resistance is made out of a stubborn imagination, and can be messy. We are a menagerie of magnificent beasts, with all of our struggles and limitations firmly at the center of the fabulous and fucked-up world we make for ourselves.

In HAVOQ/ SF Pride at Work, we imagine queerness not as a What, an identity whose boundaries we seek to police, a platform from which to put forth our One Demand. Rather, we imagine it as a How: a way of being with one another. We call it Fabulosity. And Fabulosity means drawing on queer histories of re-imagining family as a way of expanding circles of care and responsibility. Fabulosity is to affirm the self-determination of every queer to do queer just exactly how they do. It affirms that under the banner of the 99 percent, we are all uniquely impacted by the ravages of the 1 percent and we come with a diversity of strategies and tactics to resist and survive.

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