Occupy Wall Street Protest Enters Day 12
Hundreds of protesters occupying Zuccotti Park in Manhattan are entering their twelfth day of demonstrations, as solidarity and reports of police brutality meet criticisms that the activists are unfocused.
In general, the protesters express outrage over persistent unemployment and the concentration of wealth in the hands of a small percentage of the country. The Web site for the movement describes it’s purpose only as ending “the monied corruption of our democracy.”
A New York Times media critic, writing about the protests, described several eccentric participants and called the event’s cause “impossible to decipher.” And the Wall Street Journal‘s Evan Newmark said that the protesters should direct their anger at the White House, Social Security, and Medicare.
Allison Kilkenney of The Nation acknowledged that “super loud and eye catching” demonstrators do exist, and not all attend for clear reasons. But Kilkenney urged observers to take note of the more moderate protesters, like a shy 40-year-old father of two she interviewed.
“My home has been seized, I’m unemployed, there’s no job prospects on the horizon. I have two children and I don’t see a future for them. This is the only way I see to effect change,” he reportedly said, before returning home to his family.
Other videos show the demonstrators organizing a community providing food and medical care.
Compounding the debates are videos that have surfaced of an NYPD officer using pepper spray against a seemingly peaceful group of protesters.
An NYPD spokesperson defended the use of pepper spray as “appropriate,” according the the New York Times.
What do you think? Are the protesters righteous populists, misguided security threats, or something else?