Since September 17th, a long occupation has been happening in NYC and is starting to spread all over the nation, and even bits and pieces of the world: Occupy Wall Street. There has been stirring among the people of America and the rest of the world that I think all of us can relate to in one way or another – hard time finding a job; college feels more like a bait and switch scheme titled “The American Dream” than a pass to bigger and better things; bills, loans and collectors hound your dreams and phones; getting sick can morph from a minor inconvenience to financial homicide without pause – and yet there’s that 1% of America that will never feel such problems. We know them as The Rich. They may not be famous household names, no one is throwing posters of them up on their walls, their names may not be on the cover of countless gossip magazines, sometimes not even on the business magazines but they’ve got the money, power and sway that is often thrown around in even the most materialistic music videos. And we’re sick of them.
They’re the ones that can sway your congressmen far more than your vote ever will to make cutback after cutback to education, jobs, rehabilitation centers, emergency centers and personnel. They’re the ones that ask, “Hey, give me a bailout” and took that golden parachute to sail over the heads of those who could have better used the billions of dollars and pick away their homes, job opportunities and any hope that could be left. They go to expensive resorts miles away, we resort to having our pockets eaten away by expensive predatory loans and the “You’re not like us because you didn’t try hard enough.” How many of us here at Afro-punk would be gentle and kind to the bankers responsible for the economic collapse if we could meet them face to face? To hear, “Well, that’s not my problem. You should have worked harder, made more sacrifices and then you would be much better off instead of sitting here whining,” said right to us?
With countless statistics showing the economic divide worsening and worsening among races, classes and gender, the clock is going backwards to more depriving times and it isn’t fair. How many of us fill out countless forms to get any form of income? How many of us wonder where the next check is coming from or whether the job will still be here next month? How many of us worry about our loved ones not being able to make the bills? How many of us look at Wall St. with absolute disdain? Thinking about healthcare? I’m sure it’s many, our reasons are plenty but they boil down to this one and very important point: Stop corporate greed and its assault on the 99%.
In Zuccotti Park, NYC right now are a bunch of people who feel the same way we do and are tired of waiting, of being told “Your vote matters” when clearly some lobbyist’s check is worth more, of suffering silently and politely. Time for change and that has to come from the people, always did. And the first step is with occupying Wall St.
Want to take part? Here’s what you can do: Follow the main Twitters to keep yourself updated to the occupations in NYC and beyond: @OccupyWallStNYC
Partake in the WeAreThe99Percent Project currently going on at Tumblr. The rules are simple: Take a picture of yourself holding a sign that describes your situation - for example, “I am a student with $25,000 in debt,” or “I needed surgery and my first thought wasn’t if I was going to be okay, it was how I’d afford it.” Below that, write “I am the 99 percent.” Below that, write “occupywallst.org” If you don’t show your whole face, please show at least part of it. Please have your note be hand written and consise.
Watch the Livestream (stream won't load on AP), provided by Global Revolution and bring your tent – or just tell a friend. Occupations are springing up all over the place.
Donate what you can: OccupyWallSt.Org’s request page can give you all the info you need. They need more than simply money, they need blankets, socks, tents, equipment, legal guidance and more! Right now the occupiers have to deal with the NYPD being…well, the NYPD. That means seizures of cameras, laptops, tents and tarps with the occasional instance of brutality. Look it up and mail it out if you can.
Can't do any of this? Then support your local occupation. Give them socks, give them umbrellas, cold medicine, food, knit them blankets, shoot camera and video, bring internet hotspots, design flyers, spread pamphlets, help out with whatever you can, tell people, learn the laws of your states and cities so you know when the police are being corrupt, contact the National Lawyers Guild, etc etc. The revolution may not be televised but it will be quite live.