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Occupy OC-Irvine Protesters Can Camp Over Night

OccupyOC-Irvine Protesters (Photo: Dan Chmielewski)

IRVINE, CA — In what was a rare converging of Republicans and Democrats on the Irvine City Council, in a 5-0 vote yesterday, the Council decided to allow the Occupy protesters to camp overnight on the lawn in front of City Hall.

After holding a march and rally a couple weekends ago that drew close to 1,000 participants, the protesters wanted to Occupy Irvine in solidarity with the Occupy Wall Street protests. However, since the park is closed nightly from 10 pm to 6 am the Irvine Police Department had denied requests to camp overnight. Councilman Jeff Lalloway told the protesters; “I don’t see how sleeping on our lawn really helps, but … if you want to sleep on our lawn, sleep on our lawn.” Councilman Stephen Choi noted; “You are getting special, exceptional treatment. This is maybe a small accomplishment you should be proud of.”

In a story posted on OC Weekly’s Navel Gazing blog Brandon Ferguson reported:

Referencing the police’s approach to protesters, which has witnessed officers corralling people to the sidewalks every night after 10 p.m. and asking them to keep moving until 6a.m., Councilman Larry Argran, explained, “They don’t always get it 100 percent right. And we don’t always get it 100 percent right. This is a new kind of demonstration.” Agran, who is also a lawyer, then read a series of passages from the city code that he said will allow a prolonged assembly with city approval. He added the council had ample room legally to facilitate protesters wishes.

This decision is in distinct contrast to the response from elected officials in other cities in Orange County (Santa Ana) and California (Oakland), who have arrested protesters camping overnight. Only in Irvine could Right and Left come together and agree to let people exercise their 1st Amendment rights of free speech and assembly.


  1. francisco barragan francisco barragan October 26, 2011

    What a great example of the community coming together, and city government respecting the right to peaceful assembly.

    Thank you Irvine City Council and citizens and committee volunteers!!!!

    The grass may get trampled, and this is a small price to pay because it can be resod, but this decision ensures constitutional rights are not eroded or trampled as in other cities.

  2. henry lipton henry lipton October 26, 2011

    This is a step in the right direction for irvine City Council members.

  3. Jeff Gallagher Jeff Gallagher October 26, 2011

    I stopped by and spoke to many of these folks last Thursday, after Drinking Liberally. They are passionate and dedicated to this cause. And, Irvine City Council should be commended for working with them to allow what could be one of the greatest mass protests across our wonderful Country. I see @Occupy is coming to Tustin. Bring it on!!!

  4. Robert Lauten Robert Lauten October 27, 2011


    The Irvine branch of Occupy Wall Street now has permission to ruin the lawn, (under their tents), at the Irvine Civic Center, so therefore what? Where’s the victory?

    Irvine mayor Sukhee Kang is also a Congressional candidate running against the incumbent John Campbell who happens to be on the Financial Services Committee. On their campaign web sites neither has anything to say about Wall Street reform, banking reform, derivatives reform, Federal Reserve System reform, both are ‘politics as usual’ candidates.

    Suggestions for campers:
    Brake camp, save the grass, (Not the “grass” you smoke, – the lawn type).
    Protest at Campbell’s campaign headquarters, (he might not feel he needs one).
    Ignore candidate Kang, he has nothing useful to say. The action is here, we want to reinstate Glass-Steagall, H.R. 1489.

  5. Gerald Pechenuk Gerald Pechenuk October 27, 2011

    Scandalous Behavior by Michelle Obama should be targetted by the Occupy Irvine demonstrators and people of good faith everywhere.
    TO WIT: Michelle Obama will be leading a fundraiser in Houston, Texas on Novemeber 1, 2011 at the River Oaks Mansion of Super Hedge Fund Trader, John Trader.
    TO WIT: John Arnold is PART of the 1%, NOT PART of the 99%
    TO WIT: Occupy Irving Represents the 99% NOT THE 1%
    TO WIT: John Arnold made his money working for the notorious 1% Comany Called Enron.
    TO WIT: Michelle and her pet husband Barack, represent and identify with the 99%.
    Case Closed. Get on to put the 1% on lockdown with the re-instatement of the Glass-Steagall Act!!!!!!

  6. Dan Chmielewski Dan Chmielewski October 27, 2011

    LaRouche began his jail sentence in 1989, serving it at the Federal Medical Center in Rochester, Minnesota. From there he ran for Congress in 1990, seeking to represent the 10th District of Virginia, but received less than one percent of the vote. He ran for President again in 1992 with James Bevel as his running mate, a civil rights activist who had represented the LaRouche movement in its pursuit of the Franklin child prostitution ring allegations. It was only the second-ever campaign for president from prison.[118] He received 26,334 votes, standing again as the “Economic Recovery” party.[119] For a time he shared a cell with televangelist Jim Bakker. Bakker later wrote of his astonishment at LaRouche’s detailed knowledge of the Bible. According to Bakker, LaRouche received a daily intelligence report by mail, and at times had information about news events days before they happened. Bakker also wrote that LaRouche believed their cell was bugged. In Bakker’s view, “to say LaRouche was a little paranoid would be like saying that the Titanic had a little leak.”[120]

    LaRouche was released on parole in January 1994, and returned to Loudoun County. The Washington Post wrote that he would be supervised by parole and probation officers until January 2004.[121] Also in 1994, his followers joined members of the Nation of Islam to condemn the Anti-Defamation League for its alleged crimes against African Americans, reportedly one of several such meetings since 1992.[122] In 1996, LaRouche was invited to speak at a convention organized by the Nation of Islam’s Louis Farrakhan and Ben Chavis, then of the National African American Leadership Summit. As soon as he began speaking, he was booed off the stage; one delegate said it was because of his actions against African Americans in the past.[123]

    In the 1996 Democratic presidential primaries, he received enough votes in Louisiana and Virginia to get one delegate from each state, but before the primaries began, the Democratic National Committee chair, Donald Fowler, ruled that LaRouche was not a “bona fide Democrat” because of his “expressed political beliefs … which are explicitly racist and anti-Semitic,” and because of his “past activities including exploitation of and defrauding contributors and voters.” Fowler instructed state parties to disregard votes for LaRouche.[124]

    LaRouche opposed attempts to impeach President Bill Clinton, charging it was a plot by the British Intelligence to destabilize the U.S. Government.[125][126] In 1996 he called for the impeachment of Pennsylvania governor Tom Ridge.[127][128]

    In 1999 China’s press agency, the Xinhua News Agency, reported that LaRouche had criticized the Cox Report, a congressional investigation that accused the Chinese of stealing U.S. nuclear weapons secrets, calling it a “scientifically illiterate hoax.”[129] On October 13, 1999, during a press conference to announce his plans to run for president, he predicted the collapse of the world’s financial system, stating, “There’s nothing like it in this century…. it is systematic, and therefore, inevitable.” He said the U.S. and other nations had built the “biggest financial bubble in all history,” which was close to bankruptcy.[130]

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