Thursday, November 17, 2011

Occupy Wall Street Has Jumped The Shark

Before today, Occupy Wall Street was a "movement" involving a vocal minority who claimed to represent 99% of Americans, yet could only convince a couple hundred of the 20 million people in the New York metropolitan area to camp out in Zuccotti Park.

Before today, this vocal minority carried out their demonstrations with a minimal amount of physical disruption to the everyday lives of New Yorkers or those in other OWS locations (except for maybe that hotbed of banking and capitalism, Oakland).

Before today, Wall Street was cordoned off to a five foot wide path for pedestrians causing delays and inconvenience, and those unfortunate enough to live by Zuccotti Park for the last two months had to endure never ending noise and stench.

Before today, OWS stuck to Zuccotti Park to carry out their first amendment rights, and while you might be puzzled by their message or disgraced that they are trying to represent the 99%, you respected their right to protest.

Before today, OWS was annoying, but not threatening or disruptive.

Today, OWS has officially jumped the shark.

Today, the OWS “movement” evolved from peaceful protest (for the most part), to a semi-violent, abusive and disruptive demonstration, infringing on the daily lives of anyone reporting for work in or around Wall Street (as well as other locations around the country). Whether you work for Goldman Sachs, JP Morgan, Duane Reade, Subway or the local shoe repair store, NYPD funneled you down streets lined with hostile OWS protesters hurling verbal attacks on everyone who walked by.

New Yorkers are used to fighting crowds on the streets and in rush hour subways, but they typically aren’t yelling at you, and they certainly aren’t yelling at you for the sole reason that you work on or around Wall Street. The closest I’ve seen to this behavior is Yankee fans “welcoming” a Red Sox fan into the bleachers in Yankee Stadium. The Red Sox fan knew what he was getting himself into when he decided to wear a Pedro jersey into the bleachers in The Stadium, but the thousands of workers in and around Wall Street don’t deserve this treatment for simply earning a living near a certain street.

Demonizing American’s who have spent their entire lives working hard to get an education and working hard to further their careers in order to provide a quality life for themselves and their families, is not only counterproductive to their “movement”, but is downright childish and ignorant.

If OWS thought this behavior would advance their cause, they couldn’t have been more wrong.




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