Justin Wedges, an eye witness to last night's police crackdown on a rally at Manhattan’s Zuccotti Park, provided the following account via email:
"Last night, the NYPD incited what amounts to a police riot in Zuccotti Park. After several hundred of us gathered for a peaceful General Assembly, with figures like Michael Moore and Cornel West dropping in from Left Forum to show their solidarity, NYPD brutally beat and arrested around 100 people, including my friend Cecily McMillan, who was beaten so hard her ribs were cracked, she had a seizure, and she had to be taken to the ER, where she was denied visits from family and friends and still remains, to my knowledge."
[LISTEN to the show]
Today on The Bottom Line with Jessica English, we provide context for last night's events, in which more than 70 people were arrested, examining the Civil Rights Movement and the fight for Indian independence for historical context.
The Occupy Movement is something more than just the sum total of the efforts and incidents involving law enforcement and those who put their bodies on the line. It has become an “institutional emblem” — to which One Percent Media, its employees, and its consumers are deliberately attaching meaning, and seeking to alter in ways that are not always fact-based or honest. Another front in this narrative war is law enforcement.
But let's remember that law enforcement is an instrument of power. Like any instrument of power, it can be abused by the state, or in this case, those institutions that have power over the state.
During this broadcast, we push back against the narrative of One Percent Media that characterizes the Occupy Movement as purposeless and degenerate. Prior to the wave of police crackdowns, we summarize the political sentiment of the Occupy Movement as "basically the Coffee Party but younger." Here is a video, shot on October 1 & 2, 2011, that demonstrates that:
Finally, Eric Byler's 11/29/11 blog posted hours before he was arrested while documenting a police crackdown at #OccupyLA goes into detail on how the One Percent exercises its influence over city governments and over the media to inject politics into law enforcement in its determination to silence the Occupy Movement and the new paradigm of the 99 Percent. Please LISTEN to our Coffee Party Radio discussion.