Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Occupy Wall Street Movement, where are you?

Occupy Wall Street unites people regardless of colors, genders and political persuasions as a leaderless resistance movement. The common thing between those people is that They Are The 99% that will no longer tolerate the greed and corruption of the 1%. The official website states that movement is using the revolutionary Arab Spring tactic to achieve their goals and encourage the use of nonviolence to maximize the safety of all participants.

Up to this date, numerous debates on gathering in Zuccotti Park in September 2011 still taking place. While the first Occupiers had originally came to protest Wall Street, once the movement began their game plan was not very clear. What are their goals? How are they going to pursue them? Nevertheless, Occupy began to spread throughout the States and internationally, despite the lack of clarity. After a month there were hundreds of other protests, debates, critiques across not only American society.

Even though Occupiers did not issue clear demands, one thing became evident to me right away: they are aiming to reverse the agenda of global capitalism, which increases socio-economic inequality and originates in U.S. Among the key organizers there were Kalle Lasn, head of a small anti-consumerist magazine from Vancouver, Vlad Teichberg, former derivatives trader, and David Graeber, anthropologist at the University of London. They continue to build a movement even after violent evictions across the U.S. and other countries. Some people think it had come to an end. I don't believe that  protesters had an intention of abandoning a movement that had already bought out thousands of people to demand attention to the economic inequalities.

On the other hand, Occupy is not winning the war. No tangible results are seen, no real organizational policy, no legislation influenced, no candidates put forward. Nothing had really changed. Movement was set out to promote self-expression and did not focus on any particular goal. Occupy together with many labor unions could be a winning coalition of citizens, taking into account that even police is unionized in New York. Organizers probably didn't care about win-lose situations. They overly relied on viral effect of an idea. But even small victories in a movement, struggle, resistance, campaign can turn participants into fearless winners, who will feed off those win moments and get only stronger. First of all, Occupy Wall Street needs a mission, so people can relate to it and follow. Without it the movement has a risk to remain weak and uninfluential.

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