Ride BART! (If you’re in the area and it’s an option, that is.) It’s a great green living option. But also get out and voice your concern about BART’s lack of interest in democracy when you get the chance!
In anticipation of protests regarding a BART officer who killed a homeless man, BART (a San Francisco Bay Area rapid transit system) reportedly coordinated with cell phone service providers to shut down service at a number of BART stations (for which it is now under investigation). Not exactly free speech friendly.
Leading hackivist group Anonymous got word of this and decided to take BART protests to the next level. It hacked into BART’s website on Friday and released a ton of “secure” information, revealing how well-secured it really was. The group also encouraged mass protests at BART stations and even emailed everyone BART had collected email from to do so. The result — massive protests.
Looks like BART’s little stop free speech plan backfired.
BART Stations Shut Down for Hours on Monday
“Law enforcement and transit officials shut down four downtown San Francisco train stations and closed a swath of busy Market Street during the height of the evening commute Monday in response to a noisy protest,” the LATimes reports.
“Market Street was choked with hundreds of pedestrians struggling to get home, stopping at each successive Bay Area Rapid Transit station entrance only to be turned away. Helicopters lumbered overhead and police in riot gear followed protesters east toward the San Francisco Bay.”
The stations were reportedly shut down for about 2 hours.
BART Protests in Response to to BART Police Killing a Homeless Man
Last year, a BART police officer shot and killed a homeless man, with no apparently good reason. This is what got these protests going and Anaonymous focused on making that apparent in its call to action. More from the LATimes:
“The protest, which began at 5 p.m. in the Civic Center station, was called by the cyber ‘hacktivist’ organization Anonymous. Attendees were encouraged to wear ‘blood-stained’ shirts scrawled with ‘Don’t shoot, I’m unarmed’ — a reference to a homeless man recently killed by a transit officer.”
Activism and Protests Critical Part of Democracy
While this all is not specifically tied to environmental or climate action, it is tied to the rights of activists and need for free speech outlets like protests in general. Citizen action is highly needed in order to put a check on corporate and government abuse of our society. It is drastically underused, in my opinion, and is a key reason why our country is falling apart at the seems. Citizen involvement is critical to a healthy, functioning democracy.
Efforts like the recent one by BART to shut that down, rather than respond to citizen concerns of injustice, is just plain stupid and is harmful to our country.
A big thanks to the hactivists and real-life activists in San Francisco who responded over the last week and brought these BART protests about. Hope to see more of this, and a correcting of societal injustice from corporate and governmental abuse in the days, weeks, months, and years to come.
Here’s some more top activism and political news of the week for you:
GOP Crazies (Presidential Candidates)
- Bachmann Requested Federal Funding from DOT
- Calls Mount for Fallen Candidate to Redeem Climate Lies
- Rick Perry Is Big Oil’s $11 Million Man
- Rick Perry Thinks Texas Climate Scientists Are In A ‘Secular Carbon Cult’
- Perry Reveals Plan For Total U.S. Anarchy: ‘Put A Moratorium On All Regulations’
- Politifact: It is not “fair to say the science [behind climate change] is in dispute.”
- EXPLICIT PHOTOS: The REAL Brooke Hogan And 8 Others Bare All For PETA
- Food Network Ditches Shark Meat After Outcry
- Local Group: ‘Don’t Eat Puppies, Please’
Global Warming and Environmental Activism
- Civil Rights Group Demands End to Car-Centric Transportation Policies
- CNN’s mountaintop removal doc garners praise, anger, and everything in between
- When Will Your Mad As Hell Moment Happen?
- China orders petrochemical plant shutdown after protests
- Published: Cairn’s oil spill response plan!
- This is what LOVE looks like
More Politics News
- Industry Pleads That EPA Has “Discretion” to Violate Clean Air Act
- Japan Puts Nuclear Regulation in the Hands of Environment Ministry
- Obama Fired Up About Partisanship, Gridlock in Washington
- The Competitive Enterprise Institute’s Resourceful Earth: Continuing the “Jobs vs. the Environment” Fallacy