Protesters call Bay Bridge shutdown demonstration a success

Traffic is running smoothly now, a drastic difference from Monday evening, when 25 peaceful protesters packed the Bay Bridge to shut it down in a Martin Luther King Jr. Day demonstration.

All 25 were arrested and now face criminal charges as thousands of drivers were trapped on the bridge just ahead of the height of rush hour.

According to CHP, 25 protesters were taken into custody and would be booked into the San Francisco County Jail on the following charges; false imprisonment, public nuisance, unlawful assembly, and obstructing free passage.  

“I was probably the second person to be arrested. Then held in a random room in CHP over five hours, said Shayna Cureton, a member of Black.Seed, a black, queer liberation collective that was responsible for causing the bridge’s back up.

“I get that being stuck on the bridge for an hour is an inconvenience, but what's really an inconvenience is hundreds of years of white supremacy,” said Mia Birdsong, a spokeswoman for Black.Seed.

The group says they understand there were stranded drivers who may support their cause and may have been upset about being inconvenienced, but some in the group say it’s necessary because right now people’s priorities are wrong. They say what they did was the same type of thing Dr. King would’ve done.

“Martin Luther King was a black radical. He was fighting for black liberation. He did direct action, he got arrested, he agitated. He made people uncomfortable,” Birdsong said.

The group says Monday’s demonstration was well thought out and successful.

Cureton says direct action needs to continue all over the Bay.

KTVU reached out to California Highway Patrol for comment, but did not get a response. Officers had said Monday night that if they did get word of another possible protest, they would put officers in plain view in hopes of preventing such action.