Protesting Macalester students respond to admins, escalate anti-Wells Fargo sit-in

Categories: Protest News
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Luke Mielke
Mac protesters to administration: "Cutting our Wells Fargo contract aligns us with our community and with Macalester's values" 
:::: UPDATE :::: Macalester students end sit-in; administration refuses to dump Wells Fargo

As the Wells Fargo-protesting sit-in at Macalester's Weyerhaeuser Hall enters its third day, student protesters have issued a response to the memos written by administrators that we shared with you yesterday.

SEE ALSO: Occupy MN cuts ties with Occupy Homes MN, calls the group "commercial" and "classist"

Those memos explained the school's rationale for continuing its banking relationship with Wells Fargo, which basically amounted to this: Hate the game, not the player. But in their response, students argue that "hating the player" -- that is, dumping Wells Fargo -- can go a long way toward making the game easier to play for working-class homeowners.

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Macalester admin to Wells Fargo-protesting students: Hate the game, not the player

Categories: Protest News
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Sarah Knispel
About 30 Mac students are participating in the second day of a Wells Fargo-protesting sit-in.
:::: UPDATE :::: Macalester students end sit-in; administration refuses to dump Wells Fargo

This morning, about 30 Macalester students continue to hold a sit-in in Weyerhaeuser Hall. They're demanding the school sever its banking relationship with Wells Fargo, a bank they accuse of foreclosing on more Minnesota homes than anyone.

THE BACKSTORY: Macalester students occupying president's office, demanding college dump Wells Fargo [PHOTOS]

Administrators have remained mum about the sit-in, but in two memos obtained by City Pages, Mac officials explain why they've resolved to continue their relationship with the bank.

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Macalester students occupying president's office, demanding college dump Wells Fargo [PHOTOS]

Categories: Protest News
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Students occupying Weyerhaeuser Hall say they won't leave willingly until Mac shifts its business to a community bank.
This afternoon, a group of roughly a dozen Macalester students are occupying college president Brian Rosenberg's office and demanding the college cut ties with Wells Fargo.

:::: UPDATE :::: Macalester students end sit-in; administration refuses to dump Wells Fargo

Other students are rallying outside, and this afternoon some faculty members and community members are set to speak at an event in front of the college's administrative building, Weyerhaeuser Hall.

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Dorothy Dunning rallies national advocates to protest adoption law

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Dunning, at center, flanked by supporters on Monday.
On Monday afternoon, about 25 of Dorothy Dunning's supporters gathered in the atrium of the Hennepin County Government Center. At one point, the crowd launched into a modified version of the spiritual, "Ain't Gonna Let Nobody Turn Me Around."

"I'm not going to let foster care turn me around," they sang. "I'm not going to let child protection turn me around... Keep marching up to freedom land."

On March 27, the Minnesota Supreme Court ruled that two young girls should be adopted by the foster parents they have lived with all their life, and not by Dunning, their biological grandmother. But despite the verdict against her -- and her dwindling options -- Dunning continues to fight for full custody of the girls, now ages two-and-a-half and three-and-a-half.

See Also:
- Cover: Split the baby: The fight over two baby girls could change how Minnesota considers relatives and race in adoption cases
- MN Supreme Court issues close decision in Dunning-Grosser adoption case


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Occupy MN cuts ties with Occupy Homes MN, calls the group "commercial" and "classist"

Categories: Protest News
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via Facebook
Occupy MN has disassociated itself from Occupy Homes MN.
At its regular Wednesday night potluck and meeting last week, Occupy MN announced that it was cutting ties with its high-profile spin-off group, Occupy Homes MN. The decision, which was made by the protest organization's seven-person media arm, came with an explanation.

"While it is laudable to work on housing issues, we cannot reconcile a working process with this commercialized group any further," the leaders said, taking turns reading. "Many of us helped create, volunteered with, and were arrested with Occupy Homes, until unethical tactics serving the goal of evolution into a profitable Non-Governmental Organization achieved dominance."

Following the meeting, Occupy shared the statement and a video of the discussion on its Facebook page. Though Occupy organizers say they had previously suggested separating the two voices, OHMN activists say that, when they first saw the post, they were blindsided.

See Also:
- 13 Occupy Homes protestors arrested at "Week of Action" rally on I-35 bridge [VIDEO]
- Occupy MN dwindles but lives on
- Dan Feidt, producer of DRE drug scandal video, talks about Occupy, police, and the war on drugs
- Occupy Homes celebrates new victories with party and conference


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13 Occupy Homes protestors arrested at "Week of Action" rally on I-35 bridge [VIDEO]

Categories: Protest News
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Olivia LaVecchia
Protestors gather in front of the Wells Fargo Home Mortgage building, as employees look on from inside.
Not long after 5 p.m. on Wednesday, a crowd of people, many of them in orange hats stamped with the slogan "Unlock Our Future," marched one block from the front of the Wells Fargo Home Mortgage building to the 26th St. I-35W bridge.

It was rush hour, and behind them, cars on the three-lane street stalled. Police officers, who had lined the curb with squad cars, vans, and a Metro Transit bus borrowed for the afternoon (route: "Police Bus"), milled around the entry of the bridge.

Brother Ali shook one of the officer's hands, then climbed into the bed of a white pickup truck, jerry-rigged with twin speakers, and started to perform. Around him, protestors hung banners off the bridge, and the traffic below honked in support.

"I want to give a shout-out to the officer who arrested me last time," Ali yelled, as the cop he was addressing nodded. By the end of the afternoon, 13 more Occupy Homes protestors would be arrested for civil disobedience.

See Also:
- 2,000 SEIU Local 26 security officers declare one-day strike today [UPDATE]
- Occupy Homes celebrates new victories with party and conference


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2,000 SEIU Local 26 security officers declare one-day strike today [UPDATE]

Categories: Protest News
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via Kate Brickman
SEIU security officers set up a public picket line outside the Wells Fargo Center around 7 a.m.
At 6 a.m. this morning, the 2,000 security officers of the local Service Employees International Union declared a one-day strike, and began marching outside the Wells Fargo Center in downtown Minneapolis.

See Also:
- SEIU Local 26 janitors win contract, but security officers end negotiations and prepare to strike
- To prepare for strike vote, SEIU teams up with Rogue Citizen to throw an art show


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SEIU Local 26 janitors win contract, but security officers end negotiations and prepare to strike

Categories: Protest News
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SEIU Local 26 janitors after winning a new contract on Saturday.
The 6,000 local janitors and security officers of the Service Employees International Union have been without a contract since January 1. On February 9, they voted to strike if necessary, and going into the weekend, they prepared to put that vote to the test: Friday, SEIU members said, would be their last day at an increasingly-frustrating negotiating table before walking away.

After more than 31 consecutive hours of bargaining, the 4,000 janitors of SEIU won a new contract on Saturday afternoon. But the security officers couldn't strike a similarly satisfactory deal. Now, 2,000 members are preparing to strike.

See Also:
- To prepare for strike vote, SEIU teams up with Rogue Citizen to throw an art show



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Protestors converge on the state Capitol for opening day of the legislative session [IMAGES]

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The cardboard sign on the right reads, "Make the Safety Net Safe."
The Minnesota Legislature kicked off the 2013-2014 biennium today at noon. Which means that marching protestors arrived on the Capitol steps at 11:30.

See Also:
- Take Back the Capitol protests end today
- Cover: When will gay marriage be legal in Minnesota?
- Marijuana legalization bill could come before DFL-controlled legislature this session


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Idle No More flash dance brings more than 1,000 protesters to Mall of America [VIDEO]

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Idle No More protests like the one at MOA Saturday are a response to the Canadian government's effort to abrogate treaties signed with Native communities.
Shoppers at the Mall of America on Saturday evening got more entertainment than they bargained for, as the mall's eastern rotunda was packed with more than 1,000 people, including hundreds of Native Americans, for an Idle No More protest flash dance.

SEE ALSO: Twitter sparks Mall of America shooting rumor; turns out to be false alarm

The Idle No More movement began earlier this month in Canada as a response to the conservative government's effort to allow the sale of land originally set aside for indigenous people, but has since spread to America and Mexico. A smaller-scale protest dance in the IDS Center's Crystal Court on Christmas Eve resulted in the controversial arrest of American Indian Movement co-founder Clyde Bellecourt. Bellecourt was also in attendance at the Mall of America on Saturday.

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