Occupy Wall Street: An Overview

by talkbackty on Oct 23, 2011

Occupy Wall Street is now a worldwide protest that started in New York City on September 17th, 2011. I've kept my opinions in reserve as I watched this all develop, but there are too many things going on that too many people are missing to remain quiet.

Below I've pulled some of the most watched videos about some of the events that have happened since Occupy Wall Street started. I'll give a description as an intro and give my opinion at the end while trying to remain as neutral as I can.

The first video is one of the first clips I saw. Protestors are netted off and a white shirt police officer (Tony Balogna) approaches them and pepper sprays the crowd, leaving two women on their knees screaming.

This particular video is slowed down and highlights key points. I like it better because you can see what is going on, in reality it all happens very quickly. The unedited video is available on youtube.

The second video is of a marine shouting down several police officers. It's long and repetitive yet if you stick around and watch the whole thing you'll notice that there are dozens of officers that look ready to approach the crowd and then do not.

The third video is of a group of people getting arrested at a local (New York) Citibank. They were attempting to close their bank accounts at Citibank. The bank locked them in the store until police arrived and everyone was arrested. About half way through the video you'll notice a woman outside is dragged back indoors and arrested.

*Okay, bias coming, but I want to put it out there before you watch the video. Notice the woman who is picked up and dragged inside is being lifted by a man in plain clothes. He is wearing a black sweatshirt with some white writing on it and a black hat. This is an undercover police officer. Numerous eyewitness accounts say that this man was the loudest protestor inside the bank, attempting to rile the crowd up, then-when everyone was arrested and taken to the police station- he laughed in their faces.

Personal Opinion

These videos are all shocking and have had me on edge for the last few weeks. My general feeling on Occupy Wall Street is that it's too incoherent to fully understand. Talk to one person and they want to audit the Federal Reserve. Talk to another and they want to end the stock market, or legalize prostitution, or it's just a great party.

There's no leadership or structure. It's a hodgepodge of random people, probably started by college-aged adults, but certainly no longer limited to that segment of the population.

At this point the movement, at least to me, seems to be a collection of people who feel as if something is wrong with the way this country operates. And I wholeheartedly agree.

The Federal Reserve was recently partially audited and it was revealed that $16 trillion (Yes, with a "t") had been given out to US banks, corporations, and foreign banks between 2007-2010. That's more than our debt, more than our GDP, more than any budget being debated by congress. And you didn't have the slightest idea it was happening. Nobody did. Too many people still don't know.

The Worst Part

Occupy Wall Street is being attacked by the wrong people. Cops are not the enemy, at least most of them are not. Most police officers are hardworking individuals trying to do their jobs. However, when a bank, JP Morgan, donates $4.6 million to the NYPD- some higher-ups in the PD may start giving directions a little one-sided. This isn't a mystery either. There was no Woodward and Bernstein who found some secret accountant with all the dirty details. During the Occupy Wall Street protests, JP Morgan publicly announced they were giving the NYPD $4.6 million dollars. The next day 700+ people were arrested on the Brooklyn Bridge.

If this was Batman, Falcone just bought the Gotham Police. (Sorry, playing a lot of Arkham City lately).

The Best Part

Nothing like this has ever happened before. The internet makes it possible for any person to see a situation from multiple perspectives. So when the New York Times changes the front page article on the arrest of 700+ protestors, you can find out why.

A few google searches and youtube videos will lead you to an interesting couple of stories about how most protestors (including reporters on the ground) felt they were being lead by police officers onto the Brooklyn Bridge. Then the cops stopped, turned around, and arrested 700 people. The act is called kettling. You may better know it has herding or corralling.

Everyone can see the differences in people's stories. You can see where things are inconsistent and make up your own mind. There are thousands of videos that provide first-hand accounts as to what is actually happening.

I honestly don't know how I feel about everything. The main thing I feel is nervous. This is exactly how revolutions start. I'm not afraid- that would come much later and in a much worse situation. I'm on-edge though. I feel like something big could happen. Something monumental.

I don't know if I, or anyone, is ready for that.