On “Occupy Wall Street” And Why It Won’t Work…


On “Occupy Wall Street” And Why It Won’t Work…

M.D. Wright

9.28.2011

 

Back in the 1950s and 1960s, street protests in front of symbolic landmarks always garnered press attention and the attention of those unto the protests were targeted. The results were rarely pretty, with dogs, water hoses and armed law enforcement often met those who exceeded the point of tolerance. Think of the riots in the 1960s, the protests that took place in Chicago and Washington, DC, or the many civil rights protests in the Deep South and how it got the attention of people such as Robert F. Kennedy and Mayor Daley in Chicago. We have tangible proof that street protests CAN work.

 

HOWEVER…

 

This “Occupy Wall Street” movement, can’t work, and it won’t work.

 

WHY, YOU ASK?

I’m glad you ask, because I am all too eager to tell you.

 

Systematically, organizationally and even the intrinsic motivation behind it all is questionable like Osi Umenyiora in Week 4.

 

I’ll break it down like the vintage English teachers did with the “Who, What, When, Where, Why (and How)?”

 

WHO.

There was a smattering of loosely-based protesters who originally landed downtown in Manhattan. Although reports of the date of the consummation of the protests is disputed and the intended purpose is lost upon many, the ultimate representation of protesters is an ironic microcosm, illustrative of the very people who have ruined this city socially and in the area of habitation.

 

In short, HIPSTERS.

 

You know, young Tucker, Colin, Ryan and Emmysue, along with Jenna-Beth and Mary-Kate and Ashley, too., from the posh suburbs safely away from St. Lou. Who knew? I knew, because these flannel-clad, walking 79-lb cadavers who rarely bathe, spending their trust fund monies on over-expensive rags that make them appear to be homeless, while they overpay to live in “desirable” neighborhoods and force out the VERY PEOPLE who would be organizing and participating in such a protest…

 

… if they didn’t have a 12-hour job to report to, that barely paid them above minimum wage, which an entire month’s earnings could BARELY pay ONE MONTH’S RENT in 65% of the habitations in this once-great city.

 

… if they didn’t live 10-15 miles away, all the way Uptown or in Brownsville, East New York, or the Flatlands in Brooklyn and wondered whether they should spend half or all of the money in their pockets to purchase the MetroCard that will enable them to make that hour-long trip to Wall St.

 

Side Note: I refer to the entire Financial District (disgustingly labeled as “FiDi” by real estate brokers today) as Wall Street, not just the street itself.

 

From the very get-go, this was not going to work. The privileged, out-of-work “struggling” (but still somehow able to afford their $3,400/mo. rent in DUMBO) actors and “indignant” baristas who work at Starbuck’s only because they are bored, can only protest SO MUCH on behalf of those who need the most help. If the point is to put a halt to corporate greed, and redirecting the way Wall St. distributes wealth, then shouldn’t the people who are at the bottom of the totem pole, suffering the most, be prominently involved somehow? You know, instead of being mostly ambivalent and impervious to what’s even going on down on Wall St.?

 

WHERE.

As stated, the protests (coincidentally? no?) are taking place as foreign diplomats are in town at the United Nations for some sort of summit. Some of the protesters actually began lining up around Sept. 11, when some of them found out that some of the brethren of the slain police officers and firefighters who perished on that awful day, were not allowed to attend the 9/11 ceremony. As previously stated, there were loose pockets of protesters smattered all over “Wall St.”, from the Fulton St. entrance of the World Trade Center site, over to the New York Stock Exchange.

 

WHEN.

Roughly the first week or so of September, the masses began to form an amalgamation of groups with seemingly disparate interests, but ultimately seemed to agree that they wanted to “take down Wall St.!”

 

Okay.

 

WHY.

Attention?

“Redistribution of wealth”?

“Bringing attention to the widening gap between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ in New York City”?

 

Who even knows anymore. All hope for success in these “protests” fell by the wayside when Hollywood actress (read: opportunist) Susan Sarandon (pictured) showed up on yesterday and no one knew who she was. I thought some of these hipster morons were aspiring “actors”?

 

Anyway…

 

HOW.

Apparently by giving each other manicures, pedicures, potluck lines, finding strategic ways to provide extra cushions for their BEDS… yes, BEDS clogging the street while I play hopscotch around these attention whores to get to the 2/3 line. NICE.

 

When you don’t realize an ally is in your midst (Sarandon, regardless of her own motives), and are basically living the Hipster: Downtown & Natural life, instead of actually doing something that will yield results (SN: getting pepper sprayed for acting like the cops are your mom and dad back in Topeka who you talked back to relentlessly from age 3 onward, is NOT productive), well, there’s no hope for you nor the movement.

 

The biggest problem lies in the fact that if someone really truly DID organize a potentially effective protest, it won’t be taken seriously because of this farce, which looks more like a giant casting call for “Lost” than a worthwhile “protest” of the way that Wall St. works.

 

Here are some images from the charad… uh… protest:

 

(Yeah, because you really have proof that there are any “Weapons of Mass Destruction” to begin with — or realized that your willingness to pay exorbitant rents is what is ultimately making this ALREADY UNAFFORDABLE city even more unaffordable to live in, right?)

 

(HOW CREATIVE! /sarcasm).

 

(What is this going to accomplish? The macy’s Thanksgiving Parade is a full two months from now. None of the major news outlets are even giving you guys any attention).

 

(They’re all singing “Kumbaya” while giving each other manicures and pedicures, and eating hummus with goat cheese cultivated from human breast milk).

 

You may think I’m being cynical, but this whole thing just seems like a major attention-fest, led by the same people who I have come to detest since I left this city pre-9/11 and returned a few years ago to find the beginnings of a Utopian society-cum-Hipset central. If I see one more of these flannel-shirt kooks, with their spandex-tight jeans, fashionably-worn out VANS, skullies in 87 degree heat and scarves tucked over  mountain man beards (on both [alleged] men AND women), I’m going to swan dive into the Hudson like I’m practicing for next year’s triathlon.

 

FOR NOW, I WILL CONTINUE TO HOP AND SKIP OVER THEM LIKE TERRELL OWENS IN HIS LATEST VIDEO PROVING HIS KNEE IS HEALED FROM ACL SURGERY — JUST TO GET TO THE FRIGGIN J/M/Z LINE.

 

Now excuse me while I go try to find of the 8 remaining affordable apartments in Harlem.

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