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Hip Hop Occupies

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Published on Oct 20, 2011

Peace and Solidarity.

We are Hip Hop Occupies, a growing network of artists, activists, and cultural advocates from the Hip Hop grassroots who are educating, organizing, and agitating from the frontlines of Occupy actions all over the world.

Inspired by the revolutionary potential of the rapidly expanding Occupy Movement, and seeking to bridge the gap between occupations, communities of color, and youth, a group of Hip Hop artists on the ground of Occupy Seattle established a Hip Hop working group at the October 9th, 2011 General Assembly.

Within two days of outreach, through our existing networks of urban arts, youth service, and Hip Hop crews, collectives, and organizations, we had more than 14 partners, locally and nationally. Through our daily meetings, actions, and livestream-broadcasted cyphers, we began generating a groundswell of energy, excitement, and attention, expanding our in-the-field numbers more quickly than we ever imagined. Even through nightly stand-offs and morning raids from Seattle Police Department, we grew.

By October 12th, 2011, we had established the www.HipHopOccupies.com domain, framework, and Phase 1 Goals and Plan of Action. We drafted the language, garnered donated graphic design, print, and web support (thank you Mean Mouse), and continued our outreach from the field, meeting at Westlake Center at 9pm, during the height of our local Occupy internal struggles, as well as police activity. Through the chaos, we persisted, and quickly realized our vision was bigger than Seattle, and bigger than Hip Hop.

We seek to grow this network locally, nationally, and internationally, and collect the representative partners and contacts we need from EVERY city to support emerging leadership from our underrepresented communities, shape collective vision, and create a process and forum through which to outline Phase 2 Goals and Plan of Actions, including our own list of demands that address our issues, those of educational disparity, youth violence, media justice, the economic displacement of gentrification, the prison industrial complex, and more. But we cannot do this without you.

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