Struggling for Freedom of Expression / Condemning Indefinite Detention.
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On Saturday, February 4, Occupy San Diego (OSD), joined by Occupiers from other Southern California communities, marched to the intersection of 5th Avenue and E Street in downtown San Diego to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Free Speech Fight of 1912-1915. Simultaneously, they highlighted the current fight for freedom of expression by the Occupy movement. At the intersection, OSD set up newly-constructed soapboxes on all four corners, made speeches, and read statements from books and other publications. Over 200 people have been arrested by the San Diego Police Department since Occupy San Diego began its support of Occupy Wall Street on October 7, 2011.
The original 1912-15 free speech fight was prompted by a city ordinance literally banning free speech and singing. The ordinance was an attempt to stop the soapbox organizing of workers, particularly Spanish-speaking immigrants, by the Wobblies (Industrial Workers of the World / IWW). Read more here: San Diego Free Speech Fight.
After the free speech commemoration, Occupy San Diego moved on to the San Diego Convention Center where the state Democratic Party was meeting. There, OSD condemned the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) provisions on indefinite detention signed into law by President Obama on December 31, 2011. As the ACLU wrote, "The statute is particularly dangerous because it has no temporal or geographic limitations, and can be used by this and future presidents to militarily detain people captured far from any battlefield." The National Lawyers Guild wrote, "We oppose indefinite detention without trial because it is immoral and cruel and because it violates the U.S. Constitution and international law." Photos by Nic Paget-Clarke.