Occupy, Resist, Reclaim!

29 10 2011

Occupy, Resist, Reclaim!
By Nathan Revercomb

Since the Occupy Wall Street began, this movement to bring about real change has spread across the globe. Yes, many of the places where “occupy” movements have sprung up have already been hot beds of people’s actions however, though the Occupy movement did not start this wave of change, either here in the US or abroad, it has galvanized the global uprising. It has unified us in solidarity with almost every conceivable element of the 99 percent, struggling to be free.

Now, comes the true difficulties. In New York, the birthplace of the occupy movement, social stratification, in the form of discrimination against so-called “professional homeless”, by the #OWS kitchen has reared its ugly head. Now, in the fairness of honesty Occupy Wall Street has yet to actually ban the homeless from joining at their tables but, it is still a disgrace that they have begun discouraging them from eating. The Homeless too are as much a part of the 99 percent as any college students down there or any “professional protesters”.

In fact, I would go as far as to say that the homeless, and especially the chronically homeless see the broken system that is global capitalism far more clearly than their counterparts. The homeless have dealt with this (these) police state(s) in their rawest form since the very beginning and long before #OWS began.

This coupled with the fact that many homeless people are disabled in form or another and as such constitute a great portion of our most vulnerable brothers and sisters, it pains me to think that something so inspiring and beautiful as Occupy Wall Street would act in much the same way as it’s corporate-police state adversary in the treatment of these unfortunate individuals. Is there not room enough for us all in the sunshine of our great revolution?

That being said, the occupy movement in a larger context has not been quite as quick to follow suit with #OWS’ shortsightedness. In spite of the short comings, Occupy Wall Street and the Occupy Movement have achieved many victories so far. The movement has sparked action across the United States which in and of itself is a HUGE accomplishment for a nation that had been so deep in the throws of apathy. Just a few months ago the movement was nothing more than ones and zeros floating around the internet and has since found a physical expression, according to Occupy Together in more than 1700 cities worldwide at the time of this writing.

We, the 99 percent, have broken down the base of the political and corporate establishments in that we have spread our movement beyond the imaginary lines they call borders to raise a voice the world over. We have established functioning, direct and decentralized democracies. We have given voice to many who never knew they had one. If the movement crumbles and disappears tonight, these victories will still stand boldly in the faces of the 1 percent who claim their way is the only way that works.


The fact that we are bringing attention to our plight and that we will no longer be invisble to those who exploit and rule us is of great importance. It is not only or visibility but also our incredible persistence, that we can call another victory. Despite, continued police assaults, and the looming bite of winter we have continued the effort. This truly is our Valley Forge moment in more ways than one.


Many occupations are critically short on supplies, including winter gear, shelter and food. Here in Denver, at least two occupiers have been sent to the hospital for hypothermia and the toll will surely rise.

In spite of this, the movement shows no signs of abating, and not all the news coming from these varied front lines has been bad. In Albany, New York, after both the Governor and Mayor ordered the Albany Police to forcibly evict protesters there, the police shockingly refused to do so, claiming that the protesters were not causing any harm.

Solidarity has been the greatest asset to this movement, and if we are to succeed it must continue to be so. With that, I would like to relate to you a story from long ago. Back-in-the-day, there was a strike at a factory. This strike was organized by the Wobblies (the Industrial Workers of the World), a radical often anarchist union. The strike was not going well, and the strikers were camped out in the cold much like the Occupy movement, One day a stray cat wondered into the camp. This cat was sickly and injured. The strikers took the ailing feline in and as they nursed the cat back to health their outlook began to improve. Eventually the cat was healthy again and left the camp. Not long after the strike was won.

The moral of this story is that good deeds are the most productive. That one positive effort can create the conditions for the victory of good over the evils and tyrannies of this world and the mutual aid is the very backbone of solidarity. Was helping the cat the real reason they won? We may never know, but it was critical to the morale of the strikers and that without a doubt in my mind was a critical factor in their success.

As Tecumseh said, “Together we stand, divided we fall”. I hope that we stand together as one, because without solidarity the 1 percent will continue their exploits until there is virtually nothing left.

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