Occupy Wall Street Protesters Spread Over Lower Manhattan in March for Oakland

CS Muncy OWS oakland.jpg
C.S. Muncy
Protesters march in Lower Manhattan in solidarity with Occupy Oakland.
A familiar story: protesters from Occupy Wall Street marched last night. This time the march, announced to us via text message earlier in the afternoon, was to be in solidarity with Occupy Oakland. Occupy Oakland protesters were evicted from their park this week and later teargassed by police when they tried to return. The pictures looks like war photography.

Last night's march didn't turn nearly as violent, though at times it seemed like the protesters were pushing for an Oakland-style confrontation.

Marchers set off from Zuccotti Park around 9 p.m., wrapping around the park and then going north to City Hall. In spite of the resolution recently passed by Community Board 1 limiting drumming hours, the drummers came out in full force, as well as a bagpiper. The mood was more tense than usual; marchers moved faster, sometimes breaking into a run, the chanting was louder, and we heard multiple protesters yelling some variation of "Fuck the pigs!"

Scattered protesters would shout "Take the streets!" and from time to time, the march did spill over into the streets. The police arrested at least 10 people over the course of the night. We saw four people pile into a police van, one of whom looked dazed and had a dinged-up face.

CS Muncy OWS oakland 2.jpg
C.S. Muncy

The march circled all the way around City Hall Park and the first notable confrontation with cops happened at Reade and Broadway, where a scrum developed around an arrest being made. There were far more people with cameras and other onlookers than there were people involved in the arrest. We saw a nightstick going up and down but the mass of bodies prevented us from getting a look at exactly what was happening. At that point, the police brought out their kettling nets and splintered the crowd from one large group into separate smaller groups. After that, the march never achieved the same critical mass as it roamed Lower Manhattan.

Our group walked north up Broadway, more slowly than before. The drummers were gone. Protesters chanted "Oakland! Oakland!" over and over again.

Apparently things got a bit rowdier with the northernmost group, which made it to Bleecker Street while we were still in SoHo. Here's a video from Franklin Street in Tribeca:

We had to leave around 10:30. But according to Chris Robbins at Gothamist, the marchers continued to Union Square and met a large police presence there. But by then, it seems like things had calmed down quite a bit, never approaching chaos of Oakland proportions. The protesters returned to Zuccotti Park without incident.

[rgray@villagevoice.com] [@_rosiegray]

Go to Runnin' Scared for more Voice news coverage.

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12 comments
SarahMontol
SarahMontol

Americans blame the federal government more for the nation's economic plight than they do the primary target of the Occupy Wall Street protests --- big financial institutions. If you don't know why people are protesting on wall street, this article gives a very good explanation on it. 

http://explainlikeakid.blogspo...

Buddyroo
Buddyroo

Though the cops in Oakland were bad actors, I don't see how that's the NYPD's fault. And I'm not sure what idling cab drivers by running through the streets is going to achieve. Seriously, you guys need a Stooges slapping. From the gates you had the whole country behind the on-point ant-corporate welfare stuff and tons of media support, and you're still going to piss it away with self-indulgent shenanigans.

I know that there is a historic protest model that did gain moral authority from being beat up by cops. That doesn't mean you can just duplicate it for any cause, especially when you go out of your way to taunt the cops. People see: people who want get beat up confronting people who beat people up. 

It seems like the Voice is starting to be a little more honest about the ummm, complexities of what's going on at ZP. It's about time. For Godess' sake you don't have to just blindly pick a protest team and then support it religiously, you can have a mind of your own.

nickie
nickie

"Especially when you go out of your way to taunt the cops. People see: people who want get beat up confronting people who beat people up". Exactly!  There's actually video I've seen of them talking about setting up "arrestables", basically those that will be "brutalized" for the camera.  You can hear one organizer saying to others, "Don't get arrested now if you don't have a camera[on you]".  WTF!  They know the power of the visual.  But that cuts both ways.

Jroman71
Jroman71

Pathetic. Desperate. This movement's dying a slow & painful death.

Jroman71
Jroman71

To clarify. I do support the general aims & ideas of the movement, but if it's going to be taken seriously & continue to have the support of the general public, it desperately needs to move on from Zucotti Park & all of the ZP silliness happening here in New York & across the country. They're becoming just another New York City freak show for tourists to check out. Move on!!

ShellyMiscavige
ShellyMiscavige

The military are on the side of the protests now after one of their number was shot point blank in Oakland with a rubber bullet.

This is just beginning. When the numbers swell higher they'll be able to outnumber the cops and occupy the big banks. Stop them dead. Add to that the coming general strikes and then you'll have to pick a side or just get out of the way, this is happening buddy whether you like it or not.

nickie
nickie

Some of the professional activists have planned on the general strikes from the beginning.

The lay out of the plan was:-occupy area-get media-instigate/generate police incidents, grow movement, get more media-have clashes in the streets, get more people, more media-get thousands into the streets through a general strike.-bring the government to its knees, a la Tahrir Square.

Yes, it's delusional, but if you look at the emails that got leaked this is exactly where they have been trying to go.  It's not about Republican or democrat, it's about destabilization, in the words of one of the main organizers, Lisa Fithian.

Unfortunately, they don't get that this kind of rioting(it's not protesting), makes people see them for what they truly are-agitators. And if you truly think that at this point the unions will support you in a general strike, you're extra delusional.  

Everyone can support looking at ways of resolving economic problems.  But you off no solutions, only more problems.  

People now see this for what it is. 

Nickie
Nickie

And he was not shot point blank in the head. Just more propaganda.   

Nickie
Nickie

You are delusional.  Really take a step back and read what you wrote.  That, my friend, is anarchy(or treason if you are really talking about taking down the government).  

"You'll have to get out of the way"? Because what you believe gives you the right to run over everybody else, whether they agree with you or not, just like I saw the rioters do last night. Look at the VV video here.  Kicking over garbage cans and ripping up bags?  Because that is making a point about the economy? So you gave the poor garbage guys more work.  What a hero you are. 

Get over yourself.  No matter what you think, you don't run this. The law runs this and if you think you are above the law, you are sounding a lot like Scientology.  

Buddyroo
Buddyroo

People in protest movements have a history of overestimating external support. There are ex-military in every kind of group you can think of. Unless the guy was attacked BECAUSE he was a veteran, forget about it. The military is not going to take sides in domestic disputes, would you really want it to?

General strikes? You've got to be kidding. America is pretty firmly in the post-industrial capitalism phase. Nobody is going to have to get out of your way. The savvier protesters will find out how to make a buck out of telling the heroic story of OWS, the rest will get out of their way. 

This thing might have had a chance to get somewhere, but when you go for all or nothing, you're going to get nothing.

Jroman71
Jroman71

You may not know this since you probably don't know too many cops yourself, but many cops are ex & current military themselves. You're delusional & hysterical. A military junta in America! We're not Egypt!

Rapturos
Rapturos

Check out Harvard Economist Jeff Miron's 3 Common myth's about Capitalism at: http://nationalsponsor.blogspo...  There are also a number of other great videos and article on the current state of the American Political System!

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