A Brief History of the Occupation Movement
The Occupy Movement is alive and well, in spite of what you may read in the media.
Tracing its genesis to a spark from the Canadian activist publication Adbusters, viral beginnings of the Occupation Movement, erupting on Saturday, September 17, 2011 in New York’s Manhattan, quickly caught on like wildfire world-wide. Here in Asheville, less than two weeks later, on October 1, 2011, Occupy Asheville began…appropriately on Asheville’s Wall St.
From its slow start, within weeks the Occupation Movement world-wide had filled both alternative as well as major media news reports and editorials, albeit major media slanted by the 1%.
Protest encampments nation-wide have become a sign of outrage at economic injustice by a society controlled by the richest 1%. The encampments and other acts of civil disobedience have also been a major thorn in the sides of local authorities. Much of the negativity has been attributed to the homeless, dysfunctional and alcoholics at encampments.
While celebrities, including Noam Chomsky, Michael Moore, Susan Sarandon, Billy Bragg, Roseanne Barr, Thom Yorke, and countless other noted supporters have made appearances supporting it, the Occupy Movement unfortunately has also met with brutal police crackdowns, and it has been accused of a wee bit of violence itself in Oakland, California. However, we can never underestimate the methods of provocateurs who pose as legitimate protesters.
Of course Homeland Security and NDAA may step in at any time at anytime considering protesters terrorists!
Occupy camp sites have been under continuous attack from the start by the enforcers of the 1%, such as local police, FBI, federal marshals, and provocateurs, etc.. Protesters have also faced political disfavor and attacks by local governments. Thousand of protesters have been arrested nation-wide. Around a hundred of them (including myself, and my wife) were arrested or received citations for espousing non-violent, civil disobedience at Occupy Asheville events
So how big is the Occupy Movement?
How many locations are there really, and what does “occupy” really mean. These questions and others are being answered before our very eyes! We are witness to planetary history. It remains impossible to answer these and other similar questions.
Estimates, such as from Meet Up.com, say that over 2000 locations have formed in the United States, while other information points to figures as low as 600. No one can guess on national or worldwide Occupy Movement figures. In just a few short months it has made world-history, and change is already being felt.
Contrary to what you may read in mainstream media, the Occupy Movement is not folding. Far from it. For sure this is the first winter for a revolution with participants that know nothing or little about revolution, or for that matter social change. However, this itself presents a worthy challenge
A worldwide poll conducted this January 2012 found that some 40% of respondents were familiar with the Occupy Movement, and that just over twice as many were sympathetic to the Occupy Movement compared to those with a negative view. Of those who take a position, those in favor outweighed those in opposition two to one: 33% report they are favorable and 13% are unfavorable towards the protests.
I have personally wanted more action, and more support, and some local Asheville supporters and protesters, me included feel Occupy Asheville must have a central, visible presence and create “action” events and not fear the effects of their civil disobedience.
However, I will go with the flow…and consensus…but I/we will not go away.
I look forward to this article being the catch-all place to make your comments about Occupy Asheville….