(Typed before I had access to any news)
So, apparently, Occupy Wall Street is under attack. Or was. Even the media was first uninformed, then arrested when some reporters showed up, and the protestors have lost Zucotti Park. My cell phone, my only real source of news outside the camp except for my fellow Ninety-Niners, won't keep a decent charge in the cold, but the last text message I got from my PuppetMan (a dear friend in Chicago who is one of the artists of PuppetBike there) was that OWS was blowin' up. I went to bed knowing the police were there, but didn't know what would happen. And I still don't know what's happening, as the camp is particularly empty this morning. I won't know much until I go up the hill to charge my phone and hear the news, which is when I'll also post this notepad creation to Bicycles and Beansprouts. If I'm lucky, I'll have just enough charge on my laptop every day to formulate a post while I'm sitting in my warm sleeping bag, waiting for my day to start. And because there's so much uncertainty to what is happening to the peaceful occupation movement in New York, I'm feeling a bit more unsettled than the last 15 or 16 mornings I've woken up in my wee tent here.
What happens there affects us here, as we are their 99% and they are ours. I fear for them. And for all the movements that are peaceful. We are horribly misrepresented by the majority of the media. Any drug overdose you hear about in an encampment is one that could have and probably would have happened anywhere else. As for filth, this park is cleaner than it was before we occupied it. Sure, we each have our representatives that might not serve as well as others, but that's also true in any organization or family. The media, a tool for the very corporations guilty of the deeds that have wrecked our planet, will show you only what they're "allowed" to show you. Remember the twins in "Good Morning, Vietnam", the ones who censored the news feed feed before Robin Williams' character could read it on the air because "what we didn't know wouldn't hurt us"? If you don't believe that the media is controlling you just as it is being controlled, then you're probably not the right type of audience for me, quite frankly. No offense, but please...do some thinkering.
I digress. Occupy Wall Street. Without knowing what's going on, my mind has the potential to fear the worst: rubber bullets and fractured skulls, pepper spray and skin burns, tear gas and mass confusion, mayhem, and chaos...in another word, WAR. Why?!? Someone please make me understand how camping peacefully (if they're even allowed tents) and doing the necessary work to make things right in our government at long last is a crime. And even if it is, how is it feasible that it's so potentially dangerous to anyone but the 1% that the police need to go to such great lengths to hurt the peacemongers who don't have riot shields to hide behind? We're unarmed. No weapons allowed. As far as I know, the movement of non-violence is prevalent throughout every Occupy movement. So why are we battled out of the places we paid to build with violence and weapons? I can't fathom where treatment of people is acceptable in any country, but this is us...the good ol' USA. And just like in the wars where we send our young men and women to battle for reasons they're not told and lies they believe, we are at war with our own countrymen because of the same lies. Only we don't have bullets, pepper spray, tear gas, riot gear, and batons. Those of you still scratching your heads, saying, "You 99% camps...we still don't get it"? You may not understand, but the 1% does, and they're scared. And as always, they administer hate as a treatment for what they fear. They are sending our own countrymen after us. And not for the reasons you're being fed by the media.
I can't imagine being rousted out of my warm sleeping spot by someone behind a riot shield, wearing full protection, identity obscured by a mask. How scary. Are sleeping peacemongerers really that dangerous? Beside the point is that our First Amendment tells us we can peaceably assemble. And now we're having that right not only ignored, but raped away from us in the middle of the night by men with weapons. In what operating system is this right? What kind of mind would acquiesce to those kind of orders? Law enforcement officers are just as lucky as the rest of the country to have a job these days, but where is the line of integrity drawn?
Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it. War has NEVER worked. Isn't it time we tried peace? Speaking for my camp, we do an excellent job of that, and I'm fairly certain that we truly are the 99%...our camps are like those of the others. Peaceful. Non-violent. Not deserving to be evicted from the parks we paid for, but worse, we are being physically assaulted in the process. I say "we" in solidarity, as the police here have been most gracious. We would hope that their jobs have been maybe even a tad easier since we include the homeless in our community, helping them stay off the streets to some degree. I can't imagine a single reason that the police might be justified in tearing apart our camp, especially armed to the hilt against unarmed citizens who do well just to stay warm against the winter cold.
Have you not felt the great civil unrest? Have you not realized that every revolution has to start somewhere, and this is it? Even in places like Bellingham, "the City of Subdued Excitement", population 80,000ish, there is a shift occurring. People are waking up to the injustice we have experienced not only ourselves, but to the wrongs done to our friends and family, our communities and small merchants, the mom-n-pop shops and restaurants that I am coming to love more and more as I work on blog posts and research from the comfort of a place where I can get a cuppa and borrow some 'lectric juice for my phone (and now my laptop). There is no comparison to sitting in a building with a near-100-year history, writing about the revolution that is happening right in front of my nose and yours than, say, blogging from a McDonalds tucked away in a Wal-Mart. These small businesses are the 99%, as well, too often in competition with the big corporations...and losing. Shame, that. And now the police are attacking us because we're trying to defend their way of living. What is the world coming to when the very citizens who sometimes shop these independent establishments protect the country from the citizens who run them? With bullets. I don't get it. Never will. So I will stay on this side and fight with peace.
Some of these posts will be scattered, as I have only the resources to be sporadic; if a post doesn't flow, my apologies. I often have to abandon one train of thought because another one is coming in behind it so quickly that it shoves it off the track. And on that note, I have some books to read on yurts. I've always wanted one...I never thought I'd be building my own to winter a war. Blessings to the oppressors, may their eyes be opened. May they realize that they are one step away from being us. Om shanti.
I freakin' love this woman; the message on her shirt is one I fell in love with years ago, and bless her for allowing her kidlets to be a part of history.