2017 Year In Review

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By Brian Hofer

Dear members and allies of Oakland Privacy:

2017 has been both a remarkable and frustrating year. While the raging dumpster fire that is our national political discourse seems to get worse by the day, Oakland Privacy and our allies have successfully pushed a ‘self-defense’ philosophy throughout the Bay Area and California to enact legislation and policies that will protect the civil liberties of everyone, not just the privileged few.

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Drones Decide?

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By J.P Massar

Oakland Privacy members provided the impetus for the showing of ‘National Bird’ at the OMNI Commons on November 19th. It is the story of three service members enmeshed in the US government’s drone war; its effect on their lives both during and after they were enlisted; and a look at the cruel toll it takes on the people, the war targets, their families and their neighbors. It’s a good production, and you should see it. (It’s available on Netflix, Amazon, Itunes and VUDO: http://nationalbirdfilm.com/).

The reality it depicts is frightening. But it’s not nearly as frightening as what seems likely to come.

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Watching the Privacy Advisory Commission: Oct 5

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By Tamara Dalloul

On October 5th, I had the opportunity to attend a Sanctuary City meeting in Oakland City Hall.

It was both surreal and eye opening to witness the behind the scenes work that Oakland’s Privacy Commission has put in to protect members of our so called ‘Sanctuary City’.

The 2017 presidential election last year was a time of high nerves and anxiety for a lot of people. The results would have monumental repercussions for minority groups all over the United States.

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Why I Joined Oakland Privacy?

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by Lindsey Krantz

Why did I join Oakland Privacy?

I joined OP because surveillance scares me.

OP fights back and its camaraderie emboldens me.

I joined OP because mass outdoor surveillance leads to the criminalization of the status of homelessness.

Disproportionate levels of time spent under surveillance contribute to the cruel and unusual punishment inherent in the experience of homelessness.

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Big Brother Has A Little Sister

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By Chris Jasinski

As November ended, Americans took pause and celebrated Thanksgiving, a time intended for friends and family, for showing gratitude and coexisting in peace. A time which, as a growing number of dissenting voices have pointed out, provides many of us cover from the well-blurred legacy of genocide that European colonists wrought on indigenous peoples, which would evolve into a centuries-long onslaught of murder and slavery conducted in the name of conquest, God and cost-efficiency.

I’ve always found it perversely fitting that the day after such prescriptive harmony we should pivot into Black Friday, a violent orgy that kicks off the beginning of a month-long celebration of the West’s most prominent modern religion: Commodity. Now more than ever, consumers seemed primed for distraction.

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Sanctuary Journalism: ICE’s Data Broker Thomson Reuters

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By Tracy Rosenberg

(Originally published at Huffington Post)

U.S. media outlets have done a fairly good job outlining the injustices and cruelties of the broken immigration system and the rogue federal agency that enforces it: ICE. Abuses ranging from the blatantly illegal to the simply inhumane have been highlighted including the detention and attempted deportation of US citizens, removing brain tumor patients from the hospitalpaying Motel 6 hotel desk clerks to turn in hotel guestsarresting parents while their infant children are undergoing emergency surgerychasing domestic violence victims into court houses and trying to destroy records of in-custody deaths and rapes at detention centers.

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