1 vote

OccupyLA

I walked around the OccupyLA at City Hall on Sunday to get a feel for it. I'd say about 1/5 or more of the tents there were literally transplanted from Skid row.

What I observed:
- Group of Brazilians doing their karate dance/chant. This was by far the biggest/loudest group. It was these guys, i've seen them at venice before http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xe8NQmybGrI
- Some dudes throwing the football around
- A few groups of 6 or so people sitting in circles talking
- A few one on one people burning the sacred plant
- A lady holding up an End the Fed sign preaching to about three people
- A table set up with a 3 guys and petitions to "regulate weed like wine"
- 9/11 Truth Movement Table
- Two schizo's who got naked and ran across the street
- Zero police officers, 3 private security (they said there were a total of 12 private security guards on site)
- Some socialist signs attached to tents

So I talked to a few of the people there. I asked the End the Fed lady if she had heard of RP, she said ya. I asked if she voted for him last time, she said ya, but she had to write him in. I asked her if she voted for him in the primary, she said she didn't vote in the primary. I told her she needs to register R and do it this time, she said she would.

Next I went to the 911 table. They weren't like, in your face about it. They were basically passing out the A&E for 911 truth dvds and calling for a new investigation. I basically said ya, ya, ya, but wouldn't you like to have a president that would actually allow for a new investigation? They saw my RP shirt and said they liked him, but that since he belonged to the "evil party" they could not support him. I returned by saying that he is their only hope for a new investigation. They agreed, and added that they really liked how he had been consistently trying to End the Fed for decades (they kept going back to the fed, these guys really REALLY hated the fed). Again I asked if they would consider registering R and voting for him just in the primary. It was at this point that the ringleader went off on me talking about some speech that RP was going to do, but then backed out of because one of the lead AE architects would be present. "God Forbid he be in the same room as a truther" The guy blamed Benton, and went back to the whole "evil republican" and "part of the machine" schpiel. I wasn't really making any progress. I asked them about the vibe of OccupyLA and they said there were actually a lot of Ron Paul supporters, and I guess the day before, there was a meetup group or something that had set up a table and pretty much took over all of occupy for the day. The main take-away for me was that these guys all definately saw Ron as the "least-evil/most-favorable" but still there was little chance that they would vote for him in the primary.

My last stop was the weed petition table. All three guys said they were registered Libertarians and LOVED and even Donated to Ron Paul. I asked them if they would register republican JUST FOR THE PRIMARY to vote for the doc, then they could switch back right after. They all said no, and that CA passed a proposition in 2010 that prevented people from switching back and forth between primary and general. I was not aware of this and felt ignorant. These guys were die-hard libertarians, and said that it is not worth it to them to leave their party for one man, because there are so many other issues that affect us (like weed). I tried to convince them for about another 10 minutes, but to be honest these guys were so much like any of us here on the DP that we were agreeing on most everything EXCEPT the most important point. Again the take away for me was that here were genuine ron paul supporters, and even donators, who flat out refused to "leave their party" to vote for the good doctor in the primary.

In general I was very happy to see so many people who know and like Paul down there. On the other hand however, I was really disappointed to hear that so many people who agree with us are SO averse to switching parties to vote for Dr. Paul in the primary.

What can we do about this problem?