Occupy Wall Street in Hawaii

SOURCE: Ken Taylor (taylork021@hawaii.rr.com) SUBHEAD: Finally the two-week old "Occupy Wall Street" demonstration has caught fire and the attention of the media. By Shannon Rudolph on 30 September 2011 for Island Breath - (http://islandbreath.blogspot.com/2011/09/occupy-wallstreet-in-hawaii.html) Image above: Poster for Kona Occupy Wall Street solidarity demonstration. Click to enlarge. There will be an Occupy Wall Street demonstration in Kona on the the Big Island on Monday, 3 October into 2011 at 3:00pm on the Highway just south of Henry Street. Also another demonstration is now scheduled in Hilo on Monday 10/3 from 4pm-6pm Image above: Poster for Hilo Occupy Wall Street solidarity demonstration. From Shannon Rudolph. If you want to help support "Occupy Wall Street" movement you canmail donations of food and resources to: The UPS Store Re: Occupy Wall Street 118A Fulton St. #205 New York, NY 10038 Non-perishable goods only. We can accept packages of any size. We're currently low on food. "Build it and they will come" - Kevin Costner in Field of Dreams Video above: Occupy Wall Street demo at NY Police Headquarters on 9/30/11. From (http://youtu.be/GBBCE9_5v8E). See also Occupy Wallstreet: https://occupywallst.org
Tour Inside Occupy Wall Street By Juan Gonzalez on 30 September 2011 for Democracy Now! - (http://www.democracynow.org/2011/9/30/inside_occupy_wall_st_a_tour)

JUAN GONZALES: Here in New York, protesters continue to camp out in a park in the Financial District as part of an action called, Occupy Wall Street. Democracy Now!’s Mike Burke was at the protest encampment last night and filed this report.

MIKE BURKE: We’re just blocks from Wall Street and the former World Trade Center. We’re in a park called Liberty Plaza. For the past 13 days, thousands of protesters have gathered and hundreds of slept here over night for an unprecedented protest, for an action called Occupy Wall Street. Behind us now is the General Assembly, and nightly meeting where the protesters gathered to decide what action should come next. Moments ago, we spoke to some of the organizers behind Occupy Wall Street.

PATRICK BYRNE: My name is Patrick Byrne. I am 23 years old. I’m from Tucson, Arizona although I live in Bed-Stuy until I can’t pay for it anymore, which is next month and then I’m officially moved in here. I’m on the Press Relations Working Group right here at Occupy Wall Street. I think there is a very real sense in this country, and there has been for a long time, that things are not working. We have right now an 80% of the country thinks we’re on the wrong track. We have only a 15% approval rating of Congress. Those numbers aren’t acceptable. People are coming out here to voice their disapproval with the system and to voice themselves in a direct, democratic fashion. It is really refreshing for people to have a voice, and it’s really refreshing for people to think they can affect change in this system that essentially has made it so only 1% of the population are citizens.

MARISA HOLMES: My name is Marisa Holmes and I have been with the New York General Assembly from the beginning. Basically, every night we have an occupation here of 200 to 300 people a night sleeping and organizing themselves. We have a Food Committee, Medic Team, Legal Team—a couple of different Media Teams working. Really it is about self organization, participation, and democratic process.

MIKE BURKE: What keeps you coming back every single night?

MARISA HOLMES: Incredible momentum and support I’ve been getting from around the world. We have an Occupy Chicago, an Occupy L.A., an Occupy Milwaukee, an Occupy Atlanta, an Occupy Tampa. It is crazy. We have international support from Spain, Greece, Egypt, Tunisia. So, hearing all of their stories and their actions, and realizing that this is a global movement keeps me coming back.

MIKE BURKE: The protest movement and Occupy Wall Street received a significant boost this week when one of the city’s major unions voted to endorse the occupation.

JACKIE DI SALVO: My name is Jackie Di Salvo. I am an English professor at the City University of New York at Baruch College in the Graduate Center. The Transit Workers Union, which is the most militant public-sector union in this city, which is the one union that has had the guts to break the Taylor Law, which is an anti-strike law and strike, and suffered great penalties for it, they endorsed Occupy Wall Street today. Tomorrow at 5:30, there is a rally at one Police Plaza organized by many rank-and-file trade unionists from my union, the Professional Staff Congress, to condemn the police brutality and harassment. At the end of that rally, they’re going to march to Occupy Wall Street. I have to say that this is a working class group, by and large. They’re describe as middle-class in the press, but a lot of these young people are unemployed, underemployed, underpaid, working a couple of part-time jobs, so they identify very easily with the labor movement. Many of them wish they had a union.

MIKE BURKE: Let’s take a quick tour of Liberty Plaza, the home of the Occupy Wall Street movement. For the past two weeks, the media center here at Occupy Wall Street has been the way the protesters have gotten word out to the rest of the country and the world. Over here is the food area. Hundreds of people here have been eating donated food every day: muffins, apples, power bars. They have been serving three meals a day to the hundreds of protesters who have been camping out here. Tents are spread throughout this part of Liberty Plaza. Protesters are preparing to spend another night, the 13th night in a row inside this park, as part of Occupy Wall Street. The Police have barred the use of tents, but it has not stopped protesters from staying here even in the rain and the cold. On the northern end of Liberty Plaza space has been set aside for protesters to make homemade posters. Some of them read: "You are the 99%,” “System Change. Not Climate Change,” “Wall Street Bonuses = Money From Crime.”

THEO VINCENT: My name is Theo Vincent. I am an artist, dancer, actor, model, songwriter, singer. You name it; I do it. I’m basically here because I am fighting for my family and my friends, I’m fighting for everybody who’s going through the same thing we have gone through over the last couple of years. There’s a certain 1% that has taken everything from us. They’re not even looking out for us. They’re supporting our politicians; our politicians support them. There has to be an end. There has to be restrictions on these lobbyists that buy out campaigns. It is causing us to go to war, and to still be in wars that we should not be fighting. It’s causing us to lose our homes and mortgages to go up. That is what our message is…

MIKE BURKE: Here in the western part of Liberty Plaza, the space has largely been used for small gatherings, for classes, for teach-ins. On Wednesday we observed a class on direct democracy, another one on how to facilitate a meeting. Just hours ago, we caught up with one local professor who just returned from Spain. He was talking about how Occupy Wall Street fits into the global movement.

GERARDO RENIQUE: My name is Gerardo Renique. I’m a professor of history, Latin-American history in the City University of New York. As a historian I see the current crisis and events of the last two decades from a long-term perspective. What we’re going to—I think it is—the consolidation of a particular economic model that it is grounded in the financial sector and a sort of casino capitalism. I do not see in the near future an economic structure that will be creating enough jobs to absorb the number of young people graduating out of high schools and universities. One of the questions that this type of demonstration raises, is the fact that we need to start thinking of a new alternative, one: to come out of the crisis, and I would say an alternative model of civilization.

MIKE BURKE: While the Occupy Wall Street protest has been festive and peaceful, the New York police have arrested dozens of protesters over the past week. In at least two instances senior police official pepper sprayed peaceful protesters. The official, Deputy Inspector Anthony Bologna, is now under investigation.

MICHAEL TRACEY: My name is Michael Tracey. I am a journalist. I created a flyer that depicts Deputy Inspector Anthony Bologna on Saturday in a video I think surfaced two days ago, pepper spraying protesters unprovoked after they had actually been given an order by him and were complying with it. He is standing on the sidewalk near Union Square, and the protesters that he had instructed to vacate were doing so. Even then, as there were walking away, he indiscriminately started spraying them with pepper spray. This was caught on video. After the first video, which had surfaced a few days earlier, depicted him just spraying women in the face with pepper spray. When I looked this image I just saw the rage in his face. What really came to my mind is that we can do better than this collectively. Protesters deserve respect from officers and officers deserve respect from protesters. This image belies the mutual respect that should be afforded.

MIKE BURKE: I caught up with one of the victims that was pepper sprayed by Deputy Inspector Anthony Bologna last Saturday. I asked her to describe what happened.

YELL: My name is Yell. I was standing on the sidewalk watching someone gets thrown into the street and brutally attacked and arrested as I was waving a peace sign saying, “What are you doing?” We were remaining peaceful. That is what I was doing. I was not being aggressive. I was not being violent in any way. I was not given a warning that I was about to be pepper sprayed. I did not even get to see him come at me. I turned my head and it happened. It took 45 seconds to even realize I had been pepper sprayed. It was very scary.

MIKE BURKE: Are you afraid to keep coming to the protests after that?

YELL: It takes a lot more to scare me. I’m definitely not scared. It gives me more reason to want to be out there now, to participate in every march, and every general assembly. I want to be more active. I want to be more a part of it because people out there have seen what happened and they want us to keep going, and I’m going to keep going. I see no ending for me in the future. I’m going to keep fighting.

MIKE BURKE: This Saturday will mark the beginning of the third week of the Occupy Wall Street protest. A major demonstration is scheduled here in the Financial District and lower Manhattan. Protesters say they’re planning to stay here indefinitely and hope that Occupy Wall Street inspires similar protests across the country.

FRANCES FOX PIVEN: I teach at the Graduate School of the City University of New York. I am here because I am so enthusiastic about the possibilities of this sit-in, over the marches that are occurring over postal worker issues, the sister demonstrations that are starting in Chicago and Los Angeles, and maybe in Boston. I think we desperately need a popular uprising in the United States. None of us know. I study movements. None of us know the exact formula for when those movements erupt, but it could be. And if that is true, then these people who are here are really wonderful. I would do anything to help them.

MIKE BURKE: For Democracy Now! this is Mike Burke with Hany Massoud and

JUAN GONZALEZ: That’s it for Democracy Now!. I’m Juan Gonzalez.


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