Because... jaywalking will show that 1% that we're serious!
Isn't that showing respect for the other people who live in the city? Why is that bad? i'm all for civil disobedience, but that doesn't necessarily equate to disrespecting civilians in the city who may need to pick up their kids from daycare, or who will be fired if they're late & thus be unable to provide for their kids. The issue is with the government, not the working class. In fact, isn't that who we're standing up for?
Iā€™m constantly disappointed by Seattlites refusal to jaywalk when appropriate.

We just wanted to make sure people could get home from work and catch the Sounders game in time ...
Things were a little different heading back to Westlake.
Meanwhile any yacht (foie gras or not) that toots its horn will stop all traffic at the Montlake Bridge.

Mass action does not require civil disobedience - that's an option, not a requirement.

However, mass action does require mass, and also action - both are conspicuously missing in Seattle's occupational therapy.
@8~ Agreed. But, i do see civil disobedience as being a powerful statement. Only if it is disobeying a law or policy that we are in direct conflict with. If the police refuse to allow our right to voice our collective opinion, then disobey THEM. Rosa Parks refused to obey a discriminatory law. THAT was civil disobedience. i don't have a particular problem with jaywalking, but it does seem to disrespect & hence alienate the very folks that we are representing. And yes, mass is needed. Of course, i' in Portland & we don't really have that problem. Here's hoping that the movement grows, rather than wanes & fades away.
Thanks for the great coverage, Stranger Staff! This is the best source of info I can find...
I was just in San Francisco last weekend. It was wonderful to see people jaywalk right in front of cops with the cops not hassling people. I stopped to ask a cop what their policy is. He said they typically will not ticket anyone for jaywalking unless they get a complaint or they feel a person is creating a hazard. This seems like such a mature way to deal with it, in contrast to nanny-state Seattle.
Um, are you seriously suggesting people go play in traffic or something? You're starting to sound like you're anxiously waiting for people to start rioting.
@12: Yes, jaywalking equals rioting. How typically Seattle.
No, Goldy, that shows maturity and understanding of the Social Contract. A smart activist force targets the deserved, not just anyone's day that can fuck with.
@12 ~ Well, wouldn't riots put Seattle in national headlines? Isn't there a reputation to live up to?
@11~ That is really cool! Portland isn't ticketing or arresting people for such petty infractions, either. We had 2 kids arrested during the first campout for tagging OWS shit everywhere. i don't believe anyone should be arrested for that, but they should know better as it gives us all a bad name. Props to San Francisco cops, though, for showing the same decency & respect.
in stark contrast to Critical Mass....
Goldy @ 13: "Yes, jaywalking equals rioting. How typically Seattle."

Yes, jaywalking = Gandhi salt walk.
15/humancreature, this wasn't in regard to an "Occupy" protest. It is (apparently) their everyday policy.


I got stopped by a cop a few weeks ago for "jaywalking" during the flashing "don't walk" sign with 9 seconds left on it. Couldn't fucking believe it. Cop explained that it's officially illegal to cross with a flashing "don't walk" sign in Seattle. Are you fucking kidding me? He decided to be nice and let me go on my egregious offense.

Seattle. You can smoke a fatty joint walking down the street or ride a bicycle naked, but if you cross the street during a flashing "don't walk" or when no cars are coming, you're a criminal.

What the fuck is wrong with this place??
This video shows one small part of the march at one intersection. Closer to BoA, we actually did take the street. A bike cop tried to run me down.
@ 19 ~ Money. We are a broke state & we are desperate for your cash. Thanks for paying for the street, & then donating to walk across it.
As Mr Thoreau wrote, "I am as desirous of being a good neighbor as I am of being a bad subject"
@19 No shit, I just looked it up: SMC 11.50.280

I've never actually followed that in all my 26 years in Seattle. Flashing hand means you have less than 5 seconds to run across.
Yeah that's right, make fun of people actually doing something you fake fucking leftist.
Hey jaywalkers learn to obey some simple laws and social conventions of this fine city you live in. Wanna live like a fuckin animal? Move to the east coast. Jay walk all you want. NYC, Chicago have their quirks. Let Seattle have it's own. Born and raised here over 40 years ago. Never jaywalked. Never will. Go be a dickhead somewhere else. Don't come to my city and give me your blowhard "bigger city" bullshit. NYC, Chicago and pretty much anywhere that's not the PNW can suck it.
@25 Yeah, you're the dickhead. I guess jaywalking is "living like an animal." Go fuck yourself, and I'll stay right here to torment you another 40 years with my ability to think for myself and cross the fucking street like a big boy!
Yeah, the orange jacketed volunteer at the corner asking people not to cross against the light was with Occupy Seattle, doing his part to carry out the wishes of the group about the extent to which they decided to honor their sidewalk march permit. And the marchers weren't being obedient to "the man", they were respecting the effort Occupy Seattle was making to carry out the goals they'd agreed on together.

Sure sounds like the narrator was enjoying the opportunity to deride all that. To each his own.
how would it make sense to piss off car drivers?

probably over 90% of car drivers are part of the 99% too!
@27 I am really glad the ows'ers are classy like that. It also takes away ammo from any detractors...except Goldy.
Chanting "Whose Streets Our Streets" is uncivil obedience.

It's nonsense, and it makes protesters look bad.

I had a discussion on my facebook today about this topic:
Hello. Yesterday I participated in my first protest. I'm in my third decade of life, and this was my first protest.

Overall, I found the experience thrilling, empowering, and enlightening.

But I came into this a newbie. I came into this looking to throw my body and my voice behind some kind of experienced and capable leadership. And apparently so did nearly everyone else, because what I found was a massive, amorphous blob of well-intentioned folks. And when I looked around, searching for a definitive answer to what, precisely, we were doing, I found too many faces mirroring my own confusion and uncertainty.

And this uncertainty fostered self-consciousness, which in turn yielded hesitation and demureness.

Thankfully, though, there were a few commanding voices leading powerful chants. And I found my own voice by relaying these chants forward along the march.

But the demonstration suffered considerably on the multiple levels of BofA Plaza. We were bisected into two distinct clumps, with no communication between the two. Each produced it's own chants and speeches and our power was halved. (We were even riding BofA's escalators up and down between the two clusters!) People were mumbling in self-conscious confusion all around me.

That was unfortunate, yes, but our verve certainly climaxed on the return.

I'm glad I took I part. I hope this movement continues and takes on a more definite shape.
Don't be such a pompous ass. You want people to take over the streets... get off your ass and help organize something. If somehow I have mistakenly pegged you as a lazy, hyper critical jerk, I apologize and look forward to attending your forthcoming rally.
First: the person above should remember that even if the "journalist" is being pompous, they still can't actually participate or "do something" other than report because that would ruin their objectivity--which doesn't actually exist, but keeping up appearances is still important.

Second: civil disobedience is about breaking unjust laws and obeying just ones. Jaywalking SHOULD be illegal because people get killed doing it---traffic laws in general are just laws because they avoid deaths.---breaking laws stating that corporations are human beings and allowing corporations unjust power is important to avoiding deaths also---so those laws should be broken.
...temper tantrums are civil is running a red light at 40 mph...get with it!!
Anyone else find it ironic (in the non-hipster, non-Gen X sense) that Goldy - he who loves him some photo traffic lights - is the one scolding Seattleites for not breaking a traffic law?
Would you prefer they clogged up the streets for the other 99% who still have day-to-day obligations to meet? No?


No, he was not "fucking kidding (you)", and there's a very simple reason why:

When the traffic signal is green and the walk sign is lit, pedestrians have right-of-way through the intersection. But, when the red "Don't Walk" sign starts flashing, right-of-way switches from pedestrians to motor vehicles making right turns. So, legally, what you're doing when you START to cross on a blinking red is impeding traffic; otherwise, pedestrians would just keep pouring into the crosswalk up until the very last second, thus making it impossible for automobiles to make legal right-turns when they have a green light. It's exactly the same as when a traffic light turns from green to yellow: legally, vehicles are not allowed to enter the intersection on a yellow light so that they don't end up stuck there when it turns red, thus impeding cross traffic.

So, maybe there weren't any vehicles wanting to make right turns when you jaywalked. But my guess is you'll probably think twice about it next time, which was undoubtedly the cop's intention when they stopped you in the first place.

I realize that may be too much common sense for you, especially if you're one of those self-absorbed "the world revolves around ME" types, but the law wasn't created in a vacuum, nor without some thought put into it.

Final word of advice: next time you decide to do something even modestly illegal, maybe take a couple of seconds to actually, you know, look around, just to make sure there aren't any cops watching you do it.
33/ginamarie: Jaywalking SHOULD be illegal because people get killed doing it---traffic laws in general are just laws because they avoid deaths.

Jaywalking can be risky. If you don't know what you're doing then yes, you can get killed. But climbing mountains can be risky. If you don't know what you're doing you can get killed. People get killed climbing mountains. And that's not illegal. Rafting or kayaking on a fast-moving river (or even just swimming) can be risky. If you don't know what you're doing you can get killed. People get killed while rafting or kayaking on fast-moving rivers, or when swimming. And those things aren't illegal. Smoking cigs can be risky. People get lung cancer from smoking cigs and die. And smoking isn't illegal. Those are just three of countless examples.

Things that should be illegal are things someone does that endanger other people, like running a red light, or reckless driving, or driving drunk. It's why people who would never vote to make smoking illegal, voted to make it illegal in bars and restaurants.

Once you get beyond things that endanger someone else, there are two broad camps: the more libertarian camp which believes that people have a right to engage in activities that are dangerous to themselves, and the more nanny-state camp that believes government needs to pass and enforce laws in order to protect people from endangering themselves.

You guys are making me feel really good about my decision to move back east. I was having cold feet but I knew I could count on sanctimonious sloggers to validate my choice to move back to be with other 'fucking animals.' Where did the Occupy movement start again? Oh yeah, somewhere where people feel comfortable challenging authority and thinking for themselves. There's a reason for that.
What the shit? I wasn't talking about the jaywalking. I was talking about "That's not civil disobedience. That's civil obedience. You might want to learn the difference." This makes it sound like you are encouraging protesters to stop being pussies and show you what kind of disobedience they could do.
. . . .why do we have to jaywalk to be protesters? if you're so passionate, you dart out in front of cars that are WAAAAAY heavier than you... I mean, I'm just a kid, maybe when you get older and level up you get a spell where they dont hurt you?
ok....maybe I'm just young, but why is it such a "pussy" thing to do, to avoid inconveniencing everyday people? especially people in cars....big heavy cars....when you get older do you get a spell to avoid the pain/death of being hit by a moving car? oh yeah, you're a badass for getting hit by oncoming traffic....yaaaaaaay

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