Ten months in office, and Oakland Mayor Jean Quan has done what most people would consider impossible. She has united the citizens of Oakland. A recent CBS 5 poll reports that 85% of the Oakland do not think she is doing a good job as mayor. Occupiers, Anarchists, Business Owners, Protesters, The Chamber of Commerce, Conservatives, Liberals, Centrists and Anarchists all standing shoulder to shoulder with this this single shared conviction and unity of purpose. Amazingly, an even higher percentage are united in the belief that she is doing a terrible job handling the protests.
One has to ask, how did she pull off this amazing achievement? Hard to say, but perhaps we can glean some insight by looking at her own words during the Occupy Oakland protests:
- Oct. 21 - "We've had three days now where we've had incidents where people have been hurt. We really can't let the encampment keep going."
- Oct. 25 "We've been trying to talk to the Occupy Oakland people for the last two weeks. Last week it was pretty clear there was escalating violence."
- Oct. 26 - "I don't know everything."
- Oct. 27 - "Oakland more than most cities faces budget cuts, unemployment and foreclosures. We are also a progressive city. And as a longtime civil rights activist and union organizer, I want my city to support the movement."
- Oct. 28 "We're being pretty consistent. We're asking them not to camp."
- Nov. 1 - "I am working with the police chief to make sure the pro-99 percent activists - whose cause I support - will have the freedom to get their message across without the conflict that marred last week's events."
- Nov. 2 - "It appears that literally thousands of people have demonstrated primarily peacefully today in Oakland. We are disappointed in a small group that partook in acts of vandalism."
- Nov 4 - "If they can't abide by not camping at night and they can't control the violence, they need to work with the city to move the camp to a place that will be less disruptive."
My advice for Oakland citizens: