06 November 2011

Defending Occupy

Comments at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, stltoday.com, site seem overwhelmingly to be anti-Occupy, most recently on this story:St. Louis officials say time for Occupy protesters to leave plaza. Commenters seem to believe the violence and crime now being more frequently reported damns the Occupy movement.

That troubled me.

I believe the underlying reasons for Occupy to be progressive and good for the country but have to admit the crime and violence are a problem. We can't expect to gain the support of Americans if they see police in riot gear hauling-away protestors every night on TV. That creates a very bad impression and might be enough to marginalize the movement.

One way to combat that impression is to remind America that Occupy is attracting a variety of persons. As one blogger notes:

...Keep in mind that the whole Occupy Movement is one big populist shindig. It may vary from place to place,but the "Occupations" are full of people from all over the polticial spectrum. Some see this "broadness" as a really good thing. Some, like me, question it. Combine a so called leaderless movement with no common political oreintation and what do you get? Who is to say, who represents what, who is to do what, what tactic is correct, which slogan to shout, what sign to hold up? At some point the Occupy movement has to decide what it wants to be and whose interest it wants to represent...or it will implode. For how long can you have anarchists, Marxists, Ron Paul supporters, right wing libertarians, dogmatic pacifists, liberals, feel good people, angry people, people who intend to defend themselves and more, capitalists, petty bourgois, workers, unemployed. business owners, professionals, anti racists, racists, and all that and more in an "ain't we got fun" atmosphere?


If we can't defend Occupy, it is doomed.

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