Thursday, September 29, 2011

What I Saw - Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Wall Street Protests

Hundreds gathered at Liberty Plaza to make their voices heard. 
And what's more American than free speech?

 But Officer Krupke was there, too.  
I got the distinct impression he didn't 
like my camera.

 People from all walks of life 
gathered at Liberty Street and Broadway 

to express their outrage at our political system  

 and those who profit from others' misery.

 Hundreds of messages were in evidence

 including the one extending from this backpack.

 A closer view of the same

 Some people had camped there for days, 

a short distance away from this. 

I wondered what George would say.

 Some messages expressed anger at the recent 
police brutality, which Lawrence O'Donnell 
commented on . . .

The First Amendment to the Constitution of 
the United States:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. 


More messages 
The occupation organizer's website is HERE. 
The site contains more pics, video,  and other information, 
including a message from Noam Chomsky expressing
his solidarity with the protestors.

 The police were present but restrained.  

 V for Vendetta
(Alan Moore must be proud.)

 The area was covered with placards 

 that were being made by some in attendance. 

 The NYPD recorded the gathering 
from across the street.

 Officer Medina seemed lost in thought.

  People from diverse backgrounds were present. 

 Reverend Billy rubbed his nose right after 
offering some opinions here . . .

  Police kept an eye on things . . . 

. . . as the occupation continued . . .

 Around mid-afternoon, this guy - who
appeared to be someone in charge - arrived 
and quietly watched the crowd.  
While he texted, I suddenly got the feeling 
that the police were planning something - 
maybe clearing the plaza with pepper spray 
and billy clubs.  

 But my fears proved groundless, 
and a march was allowed to proceed.

 The police fell in behind the marchers, and 
I fell in behind them, ready to bear witness 
in case they attacked protestors again.

 The paddy wagon was always nearby 

 as the strong police presence continued.

 Surprisingly, the police kept their cool, 
even in the midst of protestors.

 Commander Viviano did crowd control 

 as officers followed along.

 The guy in the back must have had the 
least seniority or the lowest rank.  He had 
to carry the roll of fencing that's used to 
confine people.

 I couldn't help remembering the lines from 
"I Am the Walrus":
Mister City Policeman sitting
Pretty little policemen in a row.
See how they fly like Lucy in the Sky, 
See how they run.

Time got short, and I had to leave the march,
but at Rockefeller Center, I caught this picture of Bill Clinton.
The pic isn't that great, because I had to hold the camera 
over my head and shoot blind.  In light of the protests that day,
it was somehow fitting that my last pic was of him, since he 
supported NAFTA, which helped screw the 
American worker.  And to think I voted for him in '92. 
At the time, I considered him a good alternative to another 
four years of George H.W. Bush, but in retrospect, 
I wonder if it would have made much difference 
who was in office.

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