Action: Support D12 Occupy the Ports Activists at Court

Please come and show your support for occupiers charged with felonies during the D12 Occupy the Ports demonstration

Fellow occupiers,

As you may already know, on December 12, the demonstration at the Port of Houston resulted in felony charges for several occupiers who were engaging in civil disobedience. On Monday, January 9, they will be appearing in Court number 248 at the Harris County Criminal Justice Center, located at 1201 Franklin St. downtown.

It would be very helpful if we could get a show of support from occupiers willing to attend the hearing, which begins at 9am. Ideally, we recommend that you arrive early so as to give yourself adequate time to pass through security at the building.

For those of you who do wish to attend and are not familiar with attending court proceedings, there are a few things you should know about. You can be refused entrance to the courthouse if you are not dressed in a fashion that the security staff believes to be appropriate. While we do hope to build a world where people are judged by the content of their character and not by their appearances, at this time we do not wish to influence the court proceedings for our D12 activists by causing a scene while they’re in court. Our goal here is to show support for our activists, and we can best do that now by attending in a quiet and respectful group.

“Appropriate” dress for the courthouse can be, unfortunately, quite restrictive. It really depends on the judge, but if you follow these guidelines you should be ok. Bright colors are to be avoided. Those with hair long enough for it to be pulled back or up should arrange hair in a low to the head manner that will not require metal fasteners or maintenance during the period that one is at the courthouse. Heads may not be covered, unless required for religious reasons. Personal ornementation should be restricted to one or two rings per hand, a single watch, and a single neck ornament (tie, necklace, etc). If visible body piercings cannot be removed, ornaments should be as small and simple as possible. If you choose to wear a perfume or colone, it should be lightly applied. The only uncovered skin that’s acceptable is the face, neck, and hands and arms starting a few inches down from the shoulder. Acceptable body covering is also, unfortunately, strongly affected by apparent (binary) gender. Shoe style is likely to be considered strongly in determining which gender you are presenting as.

Only those presenting as women may wear skirts or semi-transparent body coverings. The skirt may not be more than 2 inches above the knee, and if those skirts do not cover the ankles, solid stockings are required (stockings may not have runs or holes, even deliberate ones such as those in fishnet style stockings). Stocking support garments (garters, etc) may not be visible. Stockings (on the legs) are the only semi-transparent or tight/clingy body covering permitted. If you are presenting as female, you should minimize the appearance of body hair on the face and legs.

Any person may attend in male attire, and there is some tolerance of “women” (usually as defined by face, hair, and shoes) dressing in “mens” clothing. Proper male attire requires plain long pants (jeans are acceptable, solid color slacks are preferred) and relatively smooth bottomed closed toe shoes (sneakers are ok, cleats are not). Shirts should be tucked in. If you have a large belt buckle, the belt may need to be temporarily removed to go through security.

If you would like a bathroom buddy (or are willing to be a bathroom buddy if we don’t have an even number of folks who would like one), please let us know.

Please remember that we want to put our best foot forward in order to leave a good impression on the judge and any news crews that might be present. The people who are on trial depend on these proceedings going smoothly, as their futures are on the line in these very serious hearings. Thus, it is for the benefit of those on trial that we be respectful of the proceedings and maintain faith in the abilities of our talented attorneys and the fairness of the judge.

As always, we appreciate all of your support and hope to see you on Monday!