Here Comes Trouble: Stories from My Life

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Crystal Zevon

Crystal Zevon is author of 'I'll Sleep When I'm Dead: The Dirty Life and Times of Warren Zevon,' an oral history of the life of her former husband and lifelong friend and co-conspirator

November 20th, 2011 11:18 AM

From Egypt to Franklin School

From Occupy Washington D.C. on Freedom Plaza

Yesterday was a big day here in Washington D.C.  We started out at noon with some Egyptian friends who had come to do a Teach-in the day before on the plight of Egyptians who famously won their peaceful revolution in Tahrir Square and deposed Mubarak.  They spoke of their naive belief that the military take-over of the government was temporary and would soon be returned to the people.  Sadly, not only has that not happened, the situation worsens by the day.  Whereas Mubarak's government held some 600 political prisoners, the military junta has over 12,000 protesters jailed.  Whereas the Obama administration verbally supported the people's demand that Mubarak step down and a government of the people be formed, once Mubarak was gone and the military took over, the United States continues to send over 2 billion dollars to the military government who uses those funds against the very people Obama said we support.  Yes, it is more complicated than that, and more complicated than I can write about here, but those are the simple truths here.  So, yesterday we marched with our Egyptian friends to the Egyptian Defense Office and as we were chanting slogans they had taught us in Arabic, tens of thousands were gathered in Tahrir Square chanting the same thing.  We felt empowered until we woke up this morning to discover that guns were fired into the crowd in Egypt and people died.  

Last night, we felt empowered when we joined our brothers and sisters from the McPherson Square occupation in D.C.  Eleven of them had entered Franklin School, an historic building, once a school and later a homeless shelter, and unfurled a banner reading "Public Property Under Community Control", from the towered rooftop.  This is a magnificent building which was closed to the homeless in 2008 and the night after it closed, one of its residents famously died of hypothermia.  We cheered as the eleven occupiers were carried out and loaded into police vans.  We felt strong and successful, and then we woke up to watch videos of the cops pepper-spraying non-violent protesters at U.C. Davis and we were sobered.  

Our action committee met this morning and we are determined to go on.  This fight only gains momentum as the public seeing over and over where the violence and injustice comes from.  Please stay tuned.  We have some big surprises coming.  We are the 99%

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