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We kick the ass of the ruling class

"We Demand to Know What You Are Forcing Us to Breathe!"

Posted 1 year ago on Jan. 2, 2013, 1:07 p.m. EST by OccupyWallSt
Tags: tar sands blockade, environment, houston, texas

Follow this link to background information on Houston's toxic East End, more info on projects going on in Manchester such as the Free Store, and photos from other events. For more information contact greencircleas@riseup.net

On Thursday, December 27th, in Houston, TX residents of the Manchester neighborhood joined in unity with anarchist community organizers, Tar Sands Blockaders, Occupiers, leaders from TEJAS (Texas Environmental Justice Advocacy Services), and hunger strikers Diane Wilson and Bob Lindsey, now in their 33rd day of a sustained hunger strike to protest Valero’s involvement with the Keystone XL Pipeline and ultimately their presence in this community. Movements like Occupy Wall Street have given rise to resistance movements that aim to prove that another world is possible.

Anarchists and Tar Sands Blockaders have been organizing in Houston’s toxic East End. For the past two months they have been working to cultivate a community of resistance in the fence-line neighborhood of Manchester. This was most recently displayed when residents of Manchester cheered on Diane Wilson and Bob Lindsey, after they chained their necks to industrial trucks outside this Valero refinery during a TSB action. People came out into the streets and began chanting, “Shut down Valero! Protect Manchester” and, “What do we want? Clean air! When do we want it? NOW!” Diane and Bob began a hunger strike immediately after being arrested for their actions. They were taken to the Harris County Jail where they were made to endure torturous and illegal conditions.

Anarchists and Tar Sands Blockaders helped to facilitate the gathering based on principles of mutual aid and solidarity. A barbecue was held less than one block away from the Valero refinery that poisons the neighborhood.

A sign proclaimed, “EVERYONE WELCOME! TODⒶS BIENVENIDⒶS!” and was accompanied by a free store containing many warm clothing items, books from Tony Diaz’s project, Librotraficante, live music from an Occupy Wall Street member, and toys for children collected and donated by Cherri Foytlin.

Cherri, an indigenous woman, and mother of six from Louisiana, chained herself to a Keystone XL Pipeyard gate on October 24th, a Tar Sands Blockade action.

“From destructive tar sands development that destroy indigenous sovereignty and health at the route’s start to the toxic emissions that will lay further burden on environmental justice communities along the Gulf of Mexico, this pipeline not only disproportionately affects indigenous frontline communities but its clear that it will bring death and disease to all in its path.”

-Cherri Foytlin

Residents and allies marched the half block to the neighborhoods only park sitting in the shadow of the Valero refinery and it's insidious smokestacks to issue new demands on the corporate giant. “We demand to know what you are forcing us to breathe! ¡Exigimos saber lo que nos están obligando a respirar!” The community came together in a celebration of unity and strength. The following day, a young woman from the community who helped to write a demand letter to amplify the all too often silenced voices of Manchester, made her way to San Antonio. The president and CEO of Valero, William Kleese, lives there in a multi-billion dollar home in a gated community with a security check point. The young woman, Yudith, intended to speak directly to Kleese but no one came to the door. Yudith left a copy of this letter on the holiday wreath on Kleese's door.

29 Comments

29 Comments


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[-] 3 points by scvblwxq (155) 1 year ago

An article at Mother Jones reviews research that indicates the 90% of the violence in the US and other countries is from brain damage caused by leaded gas which is release in the exhaust and especially injured residents in large cities in most countries. Since it has been replaced with unleaded gasoline the rates of violence has been dropping but there is still lots of lead dust in cities. http://www.motherjones.com/environment/2013/01/lead-crime-link-gasoline

[-] 2 points by juanvallejos (4) 1 year ago

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We write to you with some of the institutions and organizations with which they work, give us support.

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We have several research projects that should be reviewed to help the Venezuelans and North Americans.

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PROJECT GENOCIDE - Cecilia Arocha.

Rector of the Universidad Central de Venezuela, We are writing to the conduct of research that we are developing at the University of Carabobo, we would need the technologies of the faculty of sciences and technologies from the UCV

Among the technologies we need is AMF or atomic force microscope, the directors of the Faculty of Law at the University of Carabobo and the Dean of the Faculty, by Juan Carlos Vallejos myself, we send this petition.

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Diets.

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[-] 2 points by ToxicAgenda (2) 1 year ago

Wow we would love some of you guys and girls over at our place to spread the word. We have a few people who do not understand what Occupy represents. basically putting occupy in the Communist bracket. It would be great to get an education on more of the issues even for myself. http://articlechase.com/beyondnews if you would be so kind to throw us some threads our way and help. We will help you also via social media bookmarking etc <3 Peace!

[-] 2 points by KofA (495) from Muenster, TX 1 year ago

Take samples to your local university and have them tested...

[-] 2 points by tankcoil (37) 1 year ago

What is legal and what is illegal? It seems power of money is legal. Where are the courts and judges?

[-] 0 points by chuckuschumer (-366) 1 year ago

Why don't you consult with Obama's EPA. Certainly,such a friend of OWS as Obama is,would do whatever he could to bring healing and peace to all his supporters.

[-] 0 points by crossley (6) 1 year ago

We got people complaining about little work but now you don't want this pipeline that can create jobs. At first I believed in the occupy movement, protecting the common man and punish those who take advantage of the government system. But the more I look at this movement the more it sickens me on how petty people are. I'm aware that this comment will get taken down because, let's face it "if I'm not with you I'm against you" mentality is strong here. When it comes down to it all you can do is take care of yourself and family. What we need is food on our tables, clothes on our backs and food on our plates. Ideals can't do that. Sure it's nice to say "don't do that". I say ok so what should we do? Most of the 99% say this is wrong have no answer. Those few that do have one that works in theory. Now before you say I'm a "troll" or "1%" supporter I'm just a regular Canadian that needs a job, nothing more. If you truly a believer in free speech keep this comment up on the site. I'm aware of the many "boos and hisses I'll receive but this is the real world not a make believe one. DEAL WITH IT!

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (23961) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

You speak up for pollution - and say that you need a job. Speak up for green technology - it is better work.

[-] 1 points by TheSpectacle (1) 1 year ago

It seems like you'll take whatever "food on the table" they give you, even if it's poison. You don't seem to understand how dangerous this pollution is to people's lives but other's do. They have to live in an environment that cripples their lives and even endangers them. I think the problem here comes from your threshold for what constitutes a fulfilling life, a healthy environment, and just economic exchange. If lethargy is as good as health, if a cheeseburger is as good as any other food on the table, if shitty work is as good as any work, then it just goes to show that you are ill informed to what the real world is, and what you are telling us to "DEAL WITH" is actually your threshold for abuse set by your ignorance on these matters.

Pollution, environment, health, and abundance of life, are all very real, material things, not ideology. We should demand these these things. Not demand that they give them to us, but that they step aside so we can take it.

[-] 0 points by crossley (6) 1 year ago

We live in a world of realities not in a world of dreams. Ahh you Americians living the Americian dream. There's no "dream" in Canada for 2 reasons 1. The British never gave us one 2. We're awake! so step aside so we can take it.......oh yes lovlely. How's that Alaskan pipeline you yanks put across our lands doing? Through our wildlife preserves? bah another hippy. Go read a book, take time to know more about Canadian ways before showing me this ignorance that you "99%" love to embrace. You're mostly as ignorant as those "let them eat cake 1%". You got ideas but know way to implement them. Bravo sarcastic clapping

[-] 2 points by BShred (6) 1 year ago

Jobs went away because of outsourcing. Pay decreased because of outsourcing. This is all about supply and demand of labor. As much as we try to think of opportunity with hard work and education, The American Dream where we can pull ourselves up by our bootstraps, companies hire and pay based on the laws of supply and demand. Its unfair because it often doesn't take into account our talents and the credentials we've worked so hard to obtain and what we actually deserve. You're right about the problem of ignorance. Voting in elections is such a crude instrument of democracy specifically because the populace has incomplete information and they can not be expected to do long hours of research and keep a completely open mind when looking into the issues they vote on. If they did, third party candidates would get elected and the mass media wouldn't shape opinions like they do.

Outsourcing is unnecessary, has caused massive income inequality and the fix to it is not just theory. Trade barriers and tariffs have been around for hundreds and hundreds of years and are essential in protecting the workings of capitalism domestically. We have a different system than other countries and completely different economic demographics. They were in place specifically to prevent the thing we are seeing now, low cost labor and cheap products undercutting domestic jobs and businesses. In the nineties, multi-national corporations saw a great opportunity for lobbying the government and removing these trade barriers to the detriment of society. Bill Clinton hailed it as a great new era in our economy to be so globally connected through NAFTA and those other free trade agreements. and we were told that such "global conectedness" was inevitable because of the Internet and the end of communism. This is a lie. Economics and capitalism worked as it always does. Over-supply of labor is taking away the American Dream and your opportunity, it is lowering your wage and its destroying the local markets that have sustained your small businesses. This is also a blow to fair competition (another aspect of capitalism that has been completely taken for granted) between large corporations and small business. As with every aspect of capitalism, corporations been lobbying the government to pervert the rules of it and make it work in their favor. So if you're wondering why we don't have jobs, this is perhaps the biggest reason. Domestic energy vs environmentalism appears to me to just be a diversion in that discussion.

[-] 1 points by crossley (6) 1 year ago

My my, the rant I made is getting the intelligent out of the wood work this is great! What America needs is something that Canada has in spades. That my friend is third party or "Crown" run (not party run) investigation groups and adlters (ok I didn't spell that right). A recent example is an investigation that showed a northern chiefs mismanageing money that is supposed to go to their tribe and towns. The chiefs pocket the money and cry crocodile tears to the government that they're not doing enough. 13 chiefs to a tribe with a small population is not needed. This may have some negitive backlash to other tribes that use their money well. An example is a Micmaq tribe outside Turo NS that uses their money well to provide for their people by openiong inns, resurants and thier housing and the place looks well. That's an example of a 3rd party thats non-party ran and this info is put to the public for all too see. As for your Domestic energy vs environmentalism I say unless we're stamping out an animal species or not following laws put in place by the Dept. of Naural Recources, the more jobs the better.

[-] 1 points by crossley (6) 1 year ago

Ahh I'm in agreeing with the natural phenomenon of the climate change and us making about 3% of the total problem.

[-] 0 points by inclusionman (7064) 1 year ago

Do you support cutting pollution?

[-] 1 points by crossley (6) 1 year ago

If it help the economy and in the process creates jobs then yes.

[-] 1 points by inclusionman (7064) 1 year ago

What if it keeps people from dying? Does that move you? Or do you have to make profit?

[-] 0 points by inclusionman (7064) 1 year ago

Thank you. We do have an affect on many other similarly focused group. As we then spread their message we strengthen the forces fighting for the 99%. Even Occupy can't do it alone. We need to join up with as many groups as possible who are willing to embrace the plight of the 99%. That's about inclusion man!

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (23961) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

Care2 has promoted OWS activities as well.

[-] 0 points by inclusionman (7064) 1 year ago

Care2, Sierra club, change.org, signon.org, and other petition sites have supported Occupy, and the issues that Occupy fights for. Petition sites are an important element in the growing coalition that is coming together, and strengthening our efforts against the anti 99% forces. It's about inclusion man!

[-] 1 points by DKAtoday (23961) from Coon Rapids, MN 1 year ago

I from time to time reach out to various groups and ask them if they could reach out to each other as the whole would be greater then the sum of the parts in supporting issues shared in common.

also posted this one to twitter:

http://occupywallst.org/forum/on-cancer-and-its-causes-an-open-letter-7302012/

[-] 0 points by crossley (6) 1 year ago

Now the Tar Sands is something I agree with. Money that is made from this can finance new work across the country. It's safer than off shore and provieds alot of employment. Plus the Dept. of Natural Recources is on them like hawks!

[-] 0 points by inclusionman (7064) 1 year ago

I am against the tar sands. My preference is to implement a largescale, widespread alternative energy strategy and eliminate all burning of fossil fuels.

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[-] 0 points by VQkag2 (16478) 1 year ago

Solidarity

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[-] 1 points by crossley (6) 1 year ago

God I love that song, but I'm no troll. I'm just putting my 2 cents!

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[-] 3 points by GirlFriday (17435) 1 year ago

A French man nearly got away with stealing a number of paintings from the Louvre. However, after planning the robbery and getting in and out and past security, he was captured only three blocks away when his Econoline ran out of gas. When asked how he could mastermind such a crime and then make such an obvious error, he replied, “I had no Monet to buy Degas to make the Van Gogh.