A Weekly Recap of the NEAGA
The Northeast Arkansas General Assembly
Nov. 10 2011
UPDATE: The public library was not available for our showing of the Shock Doctrine on our preferred date of Dec. 1, but it was available on Wed., Nov. 30, so Frank and I took the liberty to book the library's Round Room on that date from 6-9 p.m. If this date doesn't work, please speak out here and we can work with the library on a more agreeable date for everyone. I realize this might be a church night for some people, so sorry
Present at The Edge were Courtney, Jake, Frank, Stephen, newcomer Jessie, and myself. We talked for an hour and it was productive. Listed below are points of discussion worth noting and some future actions that were determined by group consensus. Dates are subject to my own error so *please speak up* if I get something wrong:
- On the evening of Dec. 1 (time?) at the public library, Wed., Nov. 30 at 6 p.m. we'll have a viewing of the documentary adaptation of Naomi Klein's book Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, followed by the week's General Assembly. By the end of the day Friday (Nov. 11) we need to have the facility reserved, and I'll be in contact with various members throughout the day to make sure this gets done. One thing we need to be vigilant about is entrance to the library during special hours on the night of the showing. Folks will have to use a side entrance to get to the "round room" (sp?), where the actual showing is taking place, so we'll need signs if not members stationed at the main entrances directing people how to get in. We also decided that potluck isn't a good idea for this event, as we're trying to get as many viewers possible. A few of us should combine resources and provide some refreshments.
- We're going to start a community radio station under the new Low-Power FM law. For more on how this works, please visit PrometheusRadio.org. Frank has been especially enthusiastic about rallying different NPOs to back us as we apply for our license. In a parallel effort, I'll be starting a media reform website for Northeast Arkansas in order to help others start likeminded, content-sharing stations in Paragould and the rural areas, where the FCC will be granting greater bandwidth. I've received some basic training on how to apply for these licenses and I know what the FCC is looking for, so if this idea excites you please contact me directly at email@example.com As I said at the GA, the beauty of community radio isn't just that the stations aren't beholden to the profit-motive, but that they can be run democratically and not by a quiet cadre of managers who think they know what our community wants or needs. The people decide what the programming will be. So in that spirit, we'll be coordinating a series of brainstorming potlucks centered around the question, "What would you do if you had a radio station?" This will help us organize not just for the radio stations, but as a political entity in general (our station will, doubtless, have its own website as well. The first potluck will be on Dec. 4 at Courtney's house in Bay. That day is a Sunday, so we'll begin at 4 p.m. We'll have several more radio brainstorming potlucks with different factions throughout Jonesboro, and this leads me to the next point from Thursday's GA.
- We agreed that we need to reach out to and hear input from a greater diversity of factions than what we've had so far, which has consisted of an almost exclusively white and heteronormative group of frequenters. During the meeting Thursday we fortuitously made inroads with Jonesboro's LGBT advocacy group; Frank announced his own meetings during the coming days with the Jonesboro Hispanic Foundation; and Stephen and I planned to attend services at the First Baptist Church on Kitchen Street, which has a largely African-American base and a proud history of involvement in civil rights issues. These groups' marginalized voices deserve to be heard in our meetings and on the public airwaves. Other churches worth reaching out to, apparently, are St. Mark's Episcopalian and a Presbyterian church that was never identified more specifically on Thursday. We need these members at our GAs and in our media collective.
- On Dec. 8 we'll be occupying Little Rock along with the group of Little Rock activists who are already there. Courtney is driving, and I'll drive too if more people decide to come. Contact me by Twitter (it's what I use for my profile on this site) firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact Courtney through her facebook (it's also her profile on this site) for more details on this. We'll of course have more info for this at the Dec. 1 movie and Dec. 4 potluck.
- We made tentative plans to move our GAs to a regular schedule of Thursdays at 6 pm -- though as of this writing we have NOT okayed this with Ann at The Edge, so check back here for more on this. So tentatively, next GA is Thursday, Nov. 17, 6 p.m. at The Edge.
Tonight's general assembly was postponed until tomorrow. Sorry for any inconvience this may have caused. Tomorrow October 24th 2011 at 6:30 p.m we will hold a general assembly to address proposals 3 and 4 from October 22nd's general assembly. Thank you!
The Northeast Arkansas General Assembly
On this day of October 22, 2011, we, the Northeast Arkansas General Assembly held our first official assembly meeting. The following resolutions were reached by a democratic process, initially proposed as motions by separate individuals, and by a general consensus were ratified as resolutions. The following resolutions reached by the Northeast Arkansas General Assembly are subject to change, be re-edited, re-worded, or omitted entirely.
1. On October 22nd 2011, the NEAGA (Northeast Arkansas General Assembly) unanimously agreed to be known as the Northeast Arkansas General Assembly.
2. The NEAGA will continue to meet everyday hereafter, and will conclude daily occupations with an assembly meeting where ALL individuals will have the opportunity to propose, ratify, object, or propose a motion to omit specific language of resolutions or resolutions entirely.
3. The NEAGA agreed to begin hosting a daily food drive that will donate food (and possibly clothing) to a non-profit organization that has yet to be determined. This resolution is still pending and will be discussed at the next NEAGA meeting, which will be held on October 23rd, 2011.
4. A motion was brought forth to begin an open discourse on an 24-hour occupation that will take place on the corner of Main St. and Washington Ave. The NEAGA will begin this discussion and possibly reach an agreement October 23rd, 2011.
5. The NEAGA agreed to create a contact list or directory for individuals willing to give personal information to be more informed and up-to-date with the unfolding and progress of the NEAGA meetings. Those wanting to be added to this directory should contact Johnathan Willis.
6. The NEAGA unanimously agreed to post all information regarding the NEAGA and its progress at www.occupyjonesboro.weebly.com
The NEAGA will continue to meet at the intersection of Washington and Main every day.
NEAGA official meetings will take place every day at 6:30pm.