Occupy Wall Street: The Sleeping Giant Awakens

Almost as a sequel to the Advisemen article, “Debt Crisis: Corporate Fascism vs. The Sleeping Giant”, Occupy Wall Street (OWS) awoke the giant. The people had had enough and on September 17th 2011 they rose up in lower Manhattan as a peaceful protest against the inequality felt by 99% of American citizens.

Who Started It?

On July 13th 2011, a single blog posted on the website Adbusters is said to be the seed that spawned the voice of OWS. It called for people to converge onto the financial district of lower Manhattan on September 17th and collectively yet peacefully shout for economic, environmental and societal change. It specifically mentioned not following a leader but to follow a movement, a voice, to speak for all citizens that talk about the unfairness of taxes, political pettiness and perverse income but never do anything about it because they are trapped in a cycle of simply trying to stay afloat. The result has not only brought all walks of life to Zuccotti Park (NYC), a slab of concrete ground and benches chosen for its twenty-four hour access, but to town squares, government buildings and college campuses across the United States.

OWS Misconceived

The media and pundits have had a field day with OWS reporting to armchair sheep the atrocities of both the 20% and the police. The 20% are the vagrants that are attracted to the cache of free food and potential marks infiltrating OWS as mock protesters who are simply thieves, drug addicts and mentally unstable citizens. These are the people many news organizations target for man-on-the-street interviews that end up giving fodder ammunition to the likes of right wing mouthpieces. In turn, OWS turns into a carnival of lazy, good-for-nothing nomads. However, the real ‘cream’ of the movement is the intellects and lunch-hour business people holding vigil deep in OWS ranks. The police, whether twenty year veterans or newbie rookies, have never had to deal with throngs of angry citizens such as this and therefore lose sight of their training. They become dangerously biased and emotional resulting in violent abuses of power.

The Skew

According to the National Priorities Project, in 2011 America’s top earners will get a tax cut of approximately $66,384 when the bottom twenty-percent will get an average cut of $107. The net worth of about 100 million households (approx. 60%) is lower than Forbes 400 richest Americans. Tax cuts for million plus earners provided an average $128,832 benefit as Americans earning forty to fifty thousand receive an $860 average benefit. These numbers can be slung around like mud pies along with arguments of working hard and attaining the American Dream but the truth of the matter is that the pendulum of haves and have-nots has swung completely out of control.

The voice of Occupy Wall Street has put the worlds greedy on notice. The only way it will maintain its momentum is to peacefully revolt with their minds and their wallets. All in all, it is America’s display of Democracy, namely freedom of speech, being exercised just as our forefathers intended.


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