A group that included Occupy Oakland members, radical gay activists and other anarchists created havoc in Oakland after a march yesterday.
The march was organized after they found out that Oakland had a fee to enter the gay pride event held on Sunday. The rioters apparently wanted to “take action against the commercialization of their life struggle”, according to one local participant account.
The group utilized black bloc tactics, dressing alike in black to make it harder to identify them and smashed windows and ATMs in the financial district.
According to PFailBlog, a local anarchist blog:
The targeted property destruction, seen in the video above, is inspired by the violence perpetrated on a daily basis by capitalism & it’s banks. The main target seemed to be Bank of America, as it sustained substantial damage to it’s front windows and ATMs. All machines were left unusable, sending a firm message to the institution that the people are rising up and fighting back.
There were further unconfirmed reports of anarchists taking down a fence, struggling with police to keep fellow members from being arrested and attacking a police car. Those reports cannot be confirmed at this time.
No arrests or injuries occurred and marchers dispersed about an hour after the start of the action.
Update with more details from Mercury News:
According to the Mercury News, about 50 to 60 marchers, several of whom covered their faces with pink bandannas, amassed at Snow Park at 5:30 p.m. and tried unsuccessfully to crash the gate at the Pride Festival, which was taking place in Oakland’s Uptown District. Around the same time, police said several agitators smashed windows and ATMs at the nearby Bank of America branch at 300 Lakeside Drive.
The marchers continued to move through city streets for the next hour, tagging several buildings and spray painting an anarchist symbol on a police vehicle. They dispersed about 6:30 p.m., police said. No arrests were made.
Much of the graffiti vandalism was still visible Monday morning.
The Sears at Broadway and 20th Street was tagged with red spray paint that read “Destroy Capitalism” and “Queer Riots Now.” A vacant building on the corner of 19th and Broadway was tagged with “Queer Revolt.”
Less than a block down on Broadway, the Community Bank of the Bay was tagged with an anarchy symbol and the words, “Queers: Burn Banks.”