it seems like a cargo cult. they’re obsessed with the trappings and procedures of the occupation protests, and a lot of them don’t really seem to “get it” as more than a social fashion statement. they’re only interested in the frosting, not the cake. if that makes sense. when we arrived, only one person approached us and had their shit together as far as what the plan was and where we would be most useful. everyone else seems to approach the situation by meditating and just telling themselves that they’re ready without other preparation.
the camp has cleaned itself up a lot since the last time we saw it, but I get the feeling that that’s mostly a function of the larger number of people there bringing with them more people who are willing to clean up after the ones who don’t care. still lots of mostly-untended dogs crapping on sidewalks, and it seems like about a third of the sleepover campers there just don’t care at all– they’re just the same doofy “traveler” kids who normally spend their time draping themselves all over the haight. even last night, when people were holding meetings to discuss the incoming raid, they just hung out on their own side of the camp and did bonghits.
the camp medics are really, really bad. tying in with the larger cargo cult mentality of the san francisco branch, most of the medics just seem to be random people who stuck red duct tape on themselves because medics are cool. even one of the main campers who’s been there since the beginning (when he first saw us he said something along the lines of “thank god you guys are here”) told us not to trust any of the medics in the camp. he was right, most of them were drunk or stoned or just idiots.
as mentioned a couple times before, the “head medic” gave us stern warnings because we showed up because we looked like we were actually prepared for police violence. there were only two definitely competent medics there other than us, and they’d both been in oakland. the camp medics were passing out vinegar-soaked rags hours before the cops were due to arrive, but weren’t explaining what they were for and weren’t sticking them in bags, so even if the cops had showed up the vinegar would have long since evaporated. again, I think this was a thing where they were just kindof imitating what they’d seen elsewhere without understanding the actual purpose.
the medics don’t like us, with the exception of the ones who were with us in oakland. the others start from a position of “having gas masks is violent provocation” and descend from there into gibbering nonsense. luckily we’re terrifying because we’re dressed for combat and smell like blood and teargas, so nobody really gives us shit to our faces. it’s almost like the very idea of being prepared for police violence is seen as a violent crimethink. they really, really need help, but if we were to do anything we’d have to go in and scour out the existing medic hierarchy entirely and start from scratch.