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Wall Street has occupied my neighborhood for three years; still no demands, will not negotiate

The Ann Arbor Chronicle | In it for the Money:...

"This cannot be the way Occupy ends"

Occupy Wall Street Violence - This Cannot Be the Way Occupy Ends - Esquire
There is no excuse for the militarized assaults on the various encampments around the country earlier in the week. Hell, there's not excuse for the kind of militarized police forces we have in this country, period. But this can't be the way this movement ends. It cannot end in reciprocal violence. If the general message of this movement becomes embattled cops preserving public safety, my god, that's the whole ballgame, and all the thieves go free. Cops are dragging kids away by the hair. They're whacking people around and then preventing medical personnel from responding to treat their wounds. The whole world is, indeed, watching. And it's trying to make up its minds. It's easy for all of us to say that. We didn't get our heads cracked. We didn't get our belongings trashed. We didn't have our free library tossed gleefully into dumpsters. (An action which, to call it philistine, is to insult the cause for which Goliath gave his life.) We don't have the anger rising in us, except by proxy. Nevertheless, it can't end in images of bleeding cops and tossed barricades, and a CNN spokesmodel named Alison Kosik telling all of here at Gate 29 about how the brave brokers of her acquaintence have accepted these inconveniences as "business as usual." CNN is posing the members of the financial-services industry as the last gunners at Fort Zinderneuf. This is not good. What I know is that John Lewis nearly got killed at the Edmund Pettus Bridge, and he never threw a punch back in anger. I empathize with the feelings of the people who have been subject to the ludicrous reaction of hyped-up cops with new military weaponry, and then subject to the contempt and condescension of a greasy little plutocrat like Michael Bloomberg. But this cannot be the way it ends. A few days of ghastly videos — and photos like those below — and out comes a new narrative that in a dozen different ways excuses the bloodletting and then minimizes it, while strangers wait for airplanes, silent applause in their eyes. . . .

"Why I got arrested at Oscar Grant Plaza"

A woman shared her story of being arrested at Occupy Oakland. Why I got arrested at Oscar Grant Plaza | Occupied Oakland Tribune
Very early on the morning of November 14, I stood on the edge of the Occupy Oakland encampment in Oscar Grant Plaza and listened to reports that hundreds of riot police were approaching. Admittedly, I was nervous, and I had plans to disappear the moment I faced the possibility of being arrested. Yet, a few moments later as I watched the police close in, I began to think about what their presence meant, and I began to imagine the disappearance of the camp where I had spent so much of my time and made so many friends in the past weeks. It had all but emptied out as hundreds took to the intersection of 14th and Broadway, drumming and chanting, and the quiet that fell over the vacated tents was eerie. A group of people had silently linked arms at the Interfaith tent, surrounded by candles. Here and there, people sat, meandered aimlessly, packed their belongings, and even slept, but it wasn’t the bustling tent city I had begun to think of as a second home, where I could start a conversation with almost anyone, exchange ideas, hear peoples’ life stories or tell my own, be fed, pick through free books, meditate, learn yoga, listen to people sing and play instruments, and watch children play. We all knew that there was nothing that we could do to stop what was coming—that we couldn’t defend the camp, and that the police would destroy it no matter what, and they would arrest as many of us as they needed to in the process. We had no choice but to acknowledge that the military arm of the local government was too powerful, and, judging by their billy clubs and tear gas guns, they weren’t afraid to commit violence as they had done before. Many in the camp had already gone to jail and couldn’t risk it again, and still others had jobs, school, and families which they couldn’t abandon to spend a day or more being detained for silly misdemeanors. All of this led me to a feeling of profound despair. . . .