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It's no surprise that the City evicted the protesters; it was always a matter of time, although the manner and time officials chose to do it in was a surprise. But although Occupy Wall Street did suffer a setback today, it’s only a setback and not an end. Protesters can and should use this as an opportunity to unify their message and organize. Lots of people are listening and pulling for this movement to finally do so.
It was a sight New Yorkers hadn’t seen in nearly two months... an empty Zuccotti Park. The park was closed for hours today, after the City evicted Occupy Wall Street protesters around one o’clock this morning. They are now allowed back into the area, but without their personal belongings.
Mayor Bloomberg said he received a letter from Brookfield Properties, the owner of Zuccotti Park, asking for the City’s help in cleaning the space. Police in riot gear then moved into the space, clearing out demonstrators who have been camped there since September 17th. Nearly 200 protesters were arrested for disorderly conduct and resisting officers' orders. Authorities said the protesters would be able to return to the park after it had been cleaned, but without their tents or sleeping bags. Demonstrators then filed a temporary restraining order against the City’s enforcement of this law.
Mayor Bloomberg later admitted the final decision to clear the area was his, and his alone. He said, “the First Amendment protects speech. It does not protect the use of tents and sleeping bags to take over a public space.” And today, a judge agreed with the City, saying protesters “have not demonstrated they have the First Amendment right to remain in Zuccotti Park, along with their tents, structures, generators, and other installations…”
Do you agree with the judge’s decision? What’s your reaction to the late-night eviction of demonstrators at Zuccotti Park? Should protesters be allowed to stay in the park with tents and sleeping bags? What do you think is next for the two-month-old movement?
The whole occupation has turned upside down. Now the NYPD will occupy Zuccotti Park to keep the protesters out. The news media will interview the cops as occupiers. How ironic that the so called finest are occupiers and the protesters are viewers of the this Shakespearean play.
they should NOT be allowed back in period.
This is wrong. What is really wrong is that they came in like STORM TROOPERS in the middle of the night. A very Bloomberg move. I thought the US is a free country.
Multiple thoughts on this.
If the protesters would have played nice with the neighborhood, they probably would not have been kicked out but despite the community reaching out to them and negotiating a good neighbor policy the protesters were not organized enough among themselves to keep up their end.
That said, I'm not sure what further would be accomplished sleeping out in Zuccotti Park through the winter. In some ways the City did them a favor because they have to focus on their next steps and what they want to accomplish. With a presidential election year coming up, do they plan on working the political process?
OWS didn't stick to the deals they made with the locals to keep the drumming down to certain hours & they're hurting local small businesses.
Bloomberg must man up and send Brookfield Properties an invoice for all the police protection the NYPD provided them and their guests. I think it is ridicules to let the people of this city pay for Brookfield's Folly!
Upper East Side
I think all this sneaky and shady handling by the mayor and his cronies is typical of politicians and is the reason why the occupy wall street movement will and should continue forward.
This afternoon around 4.30PM, I went to Zucotti Park with a large bag of candy to hand out to protesters. A female cop told me I had to be on the sidewalk, which I thought I was. Evidentally on the sidewalk means inside the barrier, not the edge of the sidewalk. This female officer became very aggressive, grabbed my arm and shoved me from the back so hard, I nearly fell into the street. I am not a young person, I am small and female. There was no reason for such aggressive behavior by this officer. I did actually get into the sidewalk area, with some determination, and handed out the candy and greeted with hugs and kisses, which was a welcome reward for the effort that for me was an act of kindness and support.
In addition, I have never seen so many police in my life, not when the President is here, not when the UN is in Session, not even during 9/11. Cops are everywhere, helicopters, amubulances, fire engines....all kinds of police vehicles. I hope we are not heading for another Kent State.
Yu know it just aint easy(with kudos to J.L.) Greater good trumps the remonstration or does it? Their failing lies in their inability to translate their gripes into a tangible agenda. Also the tolerance level of the yuppie masters of the universe in the Wall st area was exceeded with some of the health concerns. They need more defining and more leadership since they appear rudderless.
I’m glad Bloomberg acted. No one has the right to occupy or virtually take up residence on someone else’s property, especially if it’s private property. The fact that it is a semi-public park makes no difference.
Let them pool their money and institute an institute for their own ideas. Call it the Institute of Flea Baggery.
Bloomberg woke up, too late, to the damage that the OWS scum has inflicted on the city's image. If the OWS cretins block subways and bridges this coming Thursday as they have threatened Bloomberg will have to unleash the full power of the NYPD against them. Block traffic - tear gas them, block subways - tear gas them, block the bridges - toss'em into the Narrows!
Having a billionaire mayor evict average American citizens who demand an end to the out of control income inequality and lack of opportunity only reinforces and highlights the the problem. Harassing the 99 percent movements around the country illustrates to the rest of the world our moral hypocrisy and a system that isn't working for the majority of Americans. Until these issues are addressed, this democratic movement will continue to grow.
WHAT WAS THAT? MAID SERVICE? THE CITY HAS NOW SHARED THE CULPABILITY OF ANY SOCIAL ILLS BEING GROWN AT ZUCOTTI.
WE HAD THE FIRST MARRIAGE, WE WILL HAVE THE FIRST BIRTH AND NO DOUBT A DEATH WILL OCCUR AND ALL WITH FULL AGREEMENT OF MAYOR BLOOMBERG.
REMIND ME. WHAT IS THE MESSAGE OF O.W.S.?
Mayor Bloomberg (who is one of the 1 percent, rich American) made the call on his own stating that this was done because the park had become unsafe, unhealthy and riddled with crime and drugs. Any movement is going to attract people looking to attend for their own agendas (homeless, drug dealers, etc.). I have to admit, when this first started, it was unorganized in the park, but for the last several weeks, there has been a great deal of organization. There were groups of protestors handling the media, some handled the information desk, others were responsible for getting food donations for the people and making sure everyone was fed. I personally donated to one protestor a warm coat for the winter and also stopped by the park to speak with protestors handling the media inquiries to offer my services. Although I am a member of the 99% and working part time, I was able to make copies of a few flyers for the protesters to help the cause. I would have done more if I could and still consider myself as part of this movement. What is comical is the fact that Mayor Bloomberg has not been able to reduce crime in this city...yet this is his cause for the protest....unbelievable.
WE LOVE MARIA MILITO!!!
occupy wall street has no meaning if they loose focus and do not do things in a correct way...
we can not correct wrong with wrong...
they are against the banks abuse and greed? ...hurting the economy downtown NYC is not going to help their cause :(
What is this mayor talking about saying that it was his decision and his alone to close the park.
What a joke. Sneaky, gutless mayor raided them in the middle of the night. That’s his style.
How come he never made an appearance down at Zuccotti Park?
WE DO HAVE OTHER BOROUGHS THAT NEED MUCH MORE ATTENTION THAN THIS MAYOR GIVES US.
HE STILL CATERS TO MANHATTAN AND IN THE MEAN TIME HE FOUND TIME TO BRAG AGAIN ABOUT THE TOURISTS.
TIME TO GO MR. PHONY MAYOR YOU HAVE STAYED TO LONG ALREADY.
YOU ARE DOING MORE THAN GETTING ON OUR NERVES.
PLUS THE FACT THAT HE EVEN BRAGGS ABOUT HOW MUCH MONEY HE RAKES IN.
ALSO IF THIS MAYOR IS DOING SO WELL WITH RAKING IN ALL THAT MONEY FROM THE TOURISM THEN WHY ARE
ALL OUR FARES GOING UP, UP, UP.
WHEN DO WE IN THE OUTER BOROUGHS GET A FREE RIDE SINCE MOST OF US DO PAY TAXES.
THE PROBLEM IS THAT THIS MAYOR HAS HIS NOSE IN EVERYTHING AND ANYTHING AND THINKS HE CAN RUN ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING AND IN THE MEAN TIME HE HAS MADE A MESS OF ALL THAT HE HAS TAKEN ON.
JOBS, JOBS AND MORE JOBS IS WHAT WE NEED. WE ARE ALL STRUGGLING BUT THEN AGAIN IT’S OBVIOUS HE DOESN’T
CARE ABOUT US.
You must understand two facts, One the mayor is a billionaire so he does NOT like regular people. The New York city police are profiled before hiring to assure that they obtain low intellectually functioning staff so they will follow orders without intelligent thought, That is why they seem to be bullies. they aren't they're just not very bright.
Why not allow the protestors to camp out at Floyd Bennett Field on the camp grounds? There are lavatories there and other facilities. It would certainly cost less than all of this police activity. From there they could commute by public transportation to their day job (like the rest of us do!) of protesting at Zucotti Park. At night, back to the camp grounds. It's a win-win situation, as the protest will continue in a civilized manner which will draw positive attention.
I think the Protestors are at the point where they have to now bring their message forward politically. They've laid the ground to develop a significant successful politcal party with a passionate base and funding. For them to just return to banging drums in a park makes them look uncoordinated and unpredictable by the neighborhood and the police department.
The other issue lies within that point. A large portion of this movement is also against our democracy as a whole, therefore refuse to associate themselves with current politics. If this becomes a fight for a more socialst government rather than reforming the financial sector, the country as a whole won't ever support it.
Why are they staying in Churches overnight? Are they homeless? Why don't they fast instead and in DC on the National Mall? Fighting cops gains nothing.
Lower East Side
I think the protesters should NOT be allowed to put up tents in any public park. Its disgusting and enough is enough. Bloomberg should have done this the very first day. Obama has also been a failure letting this chaos thrive. Very bad judgement.
I'm very disappointed with Mayor Bloomberg's decision raid the park in the middle of the night. And don't get me started on the behavior of some in the police force. This shouldn't have happened.
now that the protesters have their voice they must use it responsibly and effectively. They will lose their hard earned influence if they engage in any anti social behavior. They are fighting wall street and government but will increase their influence if they show consideration of their fellow citizens who live and work in the area. They seek to influence the entire Country. Why take hostage a mere park? The message and end result far exceed in importance the symbol that got them there. That's for plaques and monuments later on.
Jeffrey T. Schwartz
Upper West Side.
I think enough is enough. This group has a loosely defined demand that is not very realistic.
They are hurting residents. It is about time Bloomberg took action.
Protest all day - go home at night.
A wise man once said "Ain't nobody in this country got their rights by asking for it. And everybody is born with rights and they should make sure no folks take it from them." For a country that advocates democracy and freedom of speech, we sure are doing a poor job at showing support for these rights.
The First Amendment right to free speech and whether the Occupy Wall Street protesters need sleeping bags, tents and generators to successfully stage a protest can be loosely interpreted. The Occupy Wall Street protesters ideally want to be there 24 hours, seven days a week but the city government and Brookfield Properties would rather not want them there at all. I think there will be a lot of animosity unless there is some compromise. Couldn't they limit the number of tents and people who can stay overnight? As a gesture of goodwill from the police raid perhaps the city can use all those cots from the hurricane evacuation shelters and put them in a church to house these people.
These "rights" the people say are entitled to, do not and should not be used against the state. They are to be used just for some control over the masses. I mean they're just for a standard to keep the people in a sense, in their place. Protesters are overlooking at these rights, they interpret it in a different way then the ideal system uses it as. They use these rights to justify what they are doing, but their actions are not covered by these rights. I see this "act" moreover as a cry for help, when it is not needed. The very same people who are pushed through concepts and ideals of liberalism are the same ones who are the hypocrites. Promoting violence, rape, drugs. If you want change you have to go at it as a human not as a monster. Yelling will not get you anywhere. I believe that allowing them in the park is just the same as closing the zoo with everyone in it, just letting the animal cages open. It does nothing they should get a job and give to the suffering economy, they are not making things any better.
First, I want to thank NY1 for their coverage on Occupy Wall Street. Being a middle class citizen I completely support OWS. Many people do not take the time to realize exactly what they stand for. They are against budget cuts and layoffs for education, police officers, hospitals, fire fighters, social security, disability etc. The middle class is suffering because the 1% is receiving tax cuts along with corporations paying little to nothing in corporate taxes... The way Mayor Bloomberg is handling the situation embarrasses me. Actions speak louder than words and so far he is saying that he does not care what 99% or the middle class have to say. If he was really concerned about the sanitary conditions there he was have allowed portable restrooms. He is worried about a small patch a land in downtown Manhattan meanwhile the entire city is falling apart. If he is worried about people sleeping on the street he should address the thousands of homeless people in Manhattan that don't want to go to homeless shelters because they are unsafe with beatings and rapes happening there all the time.
Bloomberg has lost his mind. I must admit I do think it's gross that ppl r living, urinating and defacating all over the park. It is unnecessary, unsanitary, unsafe, unavailable for park enjoyment by others and the residents there have been more than tolerant. Wall st closes at 4:30-those r the 1% they r trying to "target". they Cld go home (and shower) and come back every am. There has got to b a middle ground where 1st ammendment right are exercised but where the city is not turned into a giant Dead show. However- The way this was handled as a sneak attack militia like violent raid was ABSOLUTELY UNACCEPTABLE. Last time they gave the protestors several days notice 2 clear out b4 they power washed it. WHY NOT THIS TIME? AND- I WAS SURPRISED THAT NOT ONE MEMBER OF THE PRESS ASKED THIS AT THE PRESS CONFERENCE???? WTF? Reporters and protestors were put in harms way and attacked for no reason. These bogus arrests r a result of ABUSE OF POWER AND A WASTE OF TAXPAYER $ WHEN REAL CRIMINALS NEED TO B LOCKED UP. This could and should have been handled more calmly, diplomatically and LEGALLY!!!!
What a shame! An empty Zuccotti Park! "Bloomy" the "dictator" defines the "1st Amendment." Who defines the "2nd Amendment?" Gun Violence vs Gun Rights! The "Constitution of the United States of America" needs review, revision and "enforcement." That's only "common sense", much of what is lacking in these great "UNITED STATES OF AMERICA."
The judge's ruling was correct, and struck the proper balance by affirming the right of protesters to demonstrate, but denying the protesters the opportunity to camp out in Zuccotti park. lay siege to the neighborhood, and trample on the rights of residents and small business owners.
Finally the mayor did something, the protesters are just lazy and filthy, GET A JOB, STOP COMPLAINING and your life will look better, he nypd did a great job.
Silencing a peaceful exercise in free speech with force is wrong.
The wall street protestors have no right to occupy zuccotti park. It is a private park and for everybody. Not Just the protestors.
Whatever good these people are doing is questionable – I agree with the decision to keep your tents and cooking gear out. And what about the merchants and residents who have to put up with their nonsense everyday? Who speaks for them?
Protesters should be allowed to stay.
I have been a supporter of Mayor Bloomberg despite some differences -- treatment of protesters during the Republican National Convention for one. That ended last night. The middle of the night police raid is an outrage and violation of the First Amendment on two counts -- abridgment of the freedom of speech and the press.
The tradition of overnight occupation as a form of protest goes back to, at least, the 1932 Veteran's Bonus Army encampment in Washington D.C.
Mayor Bloomberg, SHAME ON YOU!
The party is over! I need my walking space back. Make your voices heard through other venues Gen. X! Get an MBA!
Being someone who was born and raised in NY I think the people who are occupying Wall Street should wake up and realize sleeping in a park with their personal belongings is a
hazardous and inconsiderate situation.
I think the Mayor and the NYPD did the right thing. I work in NYC and if people want to protest then it should be done in the daytime and the people should go home at night and come back the next day.
I also think standing up for someone's rights and beliefs is a great thing but these people look like they are homeless
I think that the judge's interpretation of the First Ammendment to exclude protesters' property from people's Freedom of Speech was based entirely on the judge's interpretation of this fundamental right. This personal interpretation may had been influenced by the increasing gathering of protesters who had become a nuisance for those who do not understand the importance of the OWS Movement.
It was inevitable that the City would have to take action to address the public health and safety concerns in Zuccotti Park, but they should have given the protesters adequate warning, with a clear deadline to vacate and an opportunity to have the matter litigated. Instead, the NYPD came in unannounced, risked a physical confrontation with uninformed and unprepared demonstrators, confiscated protesters' personal property, tents, sleeping bags, and books, discarding it instead of vouchering and holding it for later retrieval, and, although numerous demonstrators were able to film the raid as they were being evicted, the police made it difficult for known and accredited journalists to adequately cover the operation, arresting or roughing up several of them.
Make no mistake about this - Bloomberg is not a public servant. He IS the 1% and will continue to serve the interest of other billionaires.
Despite today's ruling, if the law were on the city's side, they would have used the proper legal channels and NOT come under cloak of darkness to seize property and evict lawful protesters.
the mayor was 100% correct, those protester are gaining nothing by complaining, they are lazy,useless to themselves and are getting nothing accomplish, i commend the cops, GREAT JOB
If these people really want to change things, they need to go to Washington not Wall Street. These people have over stayed thier welcome. It's enough, they look like a joke, and WASTING taxpayers money cleaning up after them.
Why does mayor bloomberg keep talking about the law? He paid to change the law for his 3rd term mayoral race. Those people should stay with their belonging.
I understand the mayors position in terms of the noise complaints so if he took away their drums and slapped them with a summons for it then ok. But to destroy tents and trash sleeping bags? Excessive? Definitely!
That park is technically public property, right? What about squatters rights? What about the right to property and free speech? King Mike, please give up your thrown! You ARE a Public Servant! You are here (well okay you bent the law) by our discretion, kind of. No open dialogue? Hmm maybe he needs to refresh his constitutional studies. These people are your constituents not animals to be herded.
In all fairness OWS lack of leadership was their own undoing. You guys needed leaders to represent your needs and your wills and wishes. I'm sorry this city has done you a injustice.
Bloomberg evicted the demonstrators in the most cowardly and cruel way possible--in the middle of the night without any notice. No media were allowed to witness the eviction.
The subways were closed so many people could not get there to show support. Bloomberg broke the law!
I am thoroughly disgusted with the way he handled the whole thing.
Make no mistake. The police were violent--I was there. This is not the city I have come to know and love. Shameful.
So, the city should have tried "communicating" with the protestors about vacating the park so it could be cleaned? Baloney! They already tried doing that and the protestors raised hell about it. Enough aleady. If they can't figure out how to focus their demands and articulate them the it's time for them to go home.
When Bloomberg says that the Occupy Wall Street protestors weren't allowing "the public" to use Zuccotti Park, isn't he forgetting that the protestors ARE the public? Or is he incapable of identifying with the majority of New Yorkers who supported the protest, and does he only identify "the public" as the 1% who can buy a private park downtown (or a third term)?
Lower East Side
I feel that if Bloomberg could amend the New York City's term-limits law, then the protesters should be allowed to camp at Liberty Park. After all, hasn't Bloomberg been occupying his position as a mayor for a while?
If you think Bloomberg made the decision by himself, I have a nice bridge to sell you. He was pressured by the Oligarchy we live under.
Expanding on what the caller Deborah was saying, they should definitely take it to the next level...
Getting a job!
Even if it's not the job you prefer, I am certain it beats sleeping in a poop & urine infested park.
Commissioner Kelly said that Mayor Bloomberg took action in response to a request from Brookfield Properties to clear the park. Who wrote the request Bloomberg's girlfriend?
The issue is not whether the Mayor is right or the judge is correct. The real issue is does Wall Street and the banks have a right to bankrupt our system while they become richer? Unfortunately these issues are not discussed in court by the Mayor or in public.
Your show is great but you should be addressing the issues too. The whole situation is political and the Mayor and the 1% won this round but history will determine who the winner is.
The way the police cleared Zucotti Park was uncalled for, unnecessary and unfair. The protesters were given no advance notice, but rather were awakened at 1:30 AM and pulled and dragged from the park. Their belongings, food, clothes, etc, were torn out and disposed of. People were arrested. Totally wrong. I feel they should be allowed to stay with their belongings. However, I feel the protesters should be alerted to periodic clean-ups whereby they must remove their belongs for the park to be sanitized. They should then be allowed back in. Where will they sleep tonight. What will they eat ??? Thanks Bloomberg !!
What happened today was an underhanded abuse of power. The protesters should have had warning to take their belongings,food and first aid willing out of the park for it to be cleaned. Not ambushed in their sleep and pounced upon like the prey of an animals.
If the police are for the people, where were they over the weekend when the lower east 60's in the Upper East Side were clogged with infernal traffic, and an unbelievable stream of honking vehicles that forced us to leave our apartment, because some stupid movie was being taped on the Queensboro Bridge? I called the police repeatedly, but they excused themselves that there was movie being filmed and no trace of police in the area to direct the traffic.
I think the people should STAY STRONG and POSITIVE; I don't agree with many of their views but I do believe in UNITY. They are people and should be treated as such.
Even if you gave the protestors fair warning they would not have left. Enough is enough. Go march on washington. Get out of New York and stop harassing the residents who live down there. They are costing NY hundreds of thousands and putting us all in danger of terrorists by diffusing our police force.
Of course they should be allowed to stay, with tents and all. I'm shocked at how not only New Yorkers, but people from all over the country, are not supporting these people and in fact are attacking them. Surely they aren't part of the 1%? The Tea Party participators showed up with guns and offensive placards but the police did nothing. Also the supporters of that pedophile protecter Joe Paterno attacked reporters and nothing happened to them.
Has the country completely lost their minds?
Mayor Bloomberg's decision to raid the protesters just reaffirms his total disregard for the 99% of the city's population. He has lied to our teacher's promising 4% raises, yet wants to give millionaires tax breaks. He would love to drive the middle class working people totally out of the city. He had no business running for a. Third term.
Zucatti protesters needed to go... it was more like a homeless shelter.
I knew this was going to happen. For the most part NYC is becoming a place for only the wealthy to live. OWS highlighted the anger and frustration of america. And guess what Wall street don't give a Damn! Neither does Bloomberg.
Its about time...... If you asked ten of them why they were there ......you were given 10 different answers.
These protesters obviously don't work and they are costing our city money. The tax dollars going to cops working overtime plus they are probably all on some government program. When are people going to realize that life is hard,don't expect handouts and you must work hard to get ahead. I'm nowhere near rich and probably will never be but, I think what Bloomberg did was long overdue
Our Mayor lost his moral authority when he changed the law to suit himself then bought an election. He just underscores his own unbalanced point of view by treating peaceful American citizens like criminals. He is a brutal dictator in an expensive suit and he has bent our laws to suit himself and his cohorts.
Maybe the protestors should use the funds they raised to rent port-o-johns and pay for clean up. The $500k would more than cover the costs for weeks.
I think it is about time that the city removed the protesters from the park. All the criticizm of the police is uncalled for - the occupiers were not operating within the law. In addition, many occupiers were breaking other laws regarding noise, assaults, and disorderly behavior towards local residents, people who work in the area as well as the police. I have seen protesters spit at police who were just standing there.
In addition, Maria the host is totally biased and it was wrong how she cut off the caller with the opposing views. I hope John Scuimo is back soon and another replacement host is found.
i live in the area, when am i going to be allowed to use this park ? when are my children going to use this park ?. when are we going to respect the police ?
I believe it is important we have a movement that fights against the statues quo and aims to rewrite antiquated laws and regain some equality in this country. But the movement has to do more then raise awareness by occupying city streets. That is the first step, but like other successful movements it has to organize a more well rounded campaign which could includes broader methods of participation, such as boycotts, micro-finance projects, an internet presence, lobbying Albany and Washington, and much more. This movement needs to grow beyond the streets!!!
The mayor and everyone who lives and works down there have been very patient. The protesters had no right to be there and should be happy that the rules were bent for as long as they were. They should protest outside their fearless leader (Obama's) house, the White House.
Let's be real, today's police action had nothing to do with public safety and everything to do with protecting property rights and corporate interests over the rights of people to assemble and protest. If Bloomberg wants to use our tax dollars to promote public health and safety, why not send his army of police and sanitation workers down in the subway where garbage creates track fires and rat infestations? That's a clear danger to the safety of many New Yorkers!
Upper West Side
Congratulations to Mayor Bloomberg and the owners of Brookfield Properties for taking the long-overdue step of ending the illegal siege of Zuccotti park.
For far too long, a rag-tag group of anarchists, agitators, and troublemakers were allowed to wrap themselves in the First amendment, and use it as a cloak of invincibility to exercise their right to free speech and protest while trampling on the private property rights of Brookfield Properties, the rights of schoolchildren to learn, small business owners to earn a living, and tax-paying residents and office workers to live and work in a safe, clean, and healthy environment.
You've made your point. We understand. We "get it". Now it's time to move on.
My mother once told me I would never see Fascism in my life time. She was wrong. A third term dictator mayor (who changed the rules just for himself) sitting in the 1%. First he SOLD Liberty park let a real estate corporation by it. Then marched on it tore to shreds, and Mike Bloomberg gets on the TV and tells us all he is now a judge and speaks these words "...our rights are not absolute." I got some Choice Expletives for this man.
Are the protesters paying rent to the Zucatti Park owners? Why not? I think less and less of them every day.
While the protesters have not articulated it as such or as clearly as they could and should, the underlying thesis of this protest movement is not simply "to soak the rich" or to "redistribute wealth from the haves to the have nots". Rather the thesis is that federal, state and local government has failed and continues to fail those of its citizens who work hard, pay taxes, play by the rules and have a reasonable expectation that their governments should treat them fairly and work for them and not against them. Every one of the industries which was involved in the near collapse of the U.S. economic system and/or which continue to have an economic vice grip on the citizenry are regulated by the federal, state and/or local government--the banks, the mortgage banks, the investment banks, the insurance and health insurance companies to mention a few of the most prominent ones, which, not coincidentally, as Illinois Sen. Durbin has posited, own the Congress and most of the 50 state houses in the USA. Clearly, such government regulation failed and failed miserably and the taxpayers have been made to bear, and will continue to bear, the brunt of such failure long into the future.
First, I have been trying to call for the past half hour.
Second, to Rob I would say: You've been working down there for the past two months and one person spit on you? Yes, there will be bad elements in any movement, but last night when one person knocked over a trash can, six people jumped in to pick it and the trash up.
And to David, yes, it is a private park, but it's also a public space. This means that the owners got a large tax break from the city for making it.
And finally, the police exist to protect the citizens of our city. It seems that they have lately been sanctioned to only protect business and create revenue. They are quick to hand out tickets with payable fines, but theft and violent crime rates are up with arrests down. Is that because arresting a mugger doesn't create money in the city coffers? What happened in Zuccotti Park last night wasn't about anything more than looking after big business and hoping the movement would fall apart.
I read the blog coming from the courtroom and in question was whether the tents constituted symbolic free speech. Well if the OWS lawyer had a sense of New York City history, he would have been able to cite the shanty towns that sprouted up in Central Park during the Great Depression. I saw those tents, the community that the occupiers created, as a symbolic nod to the shanty towns of 80 years ago.
The inequity in this country is exponentially greater than any other free market society. I am grateful to this movement for shining a light on that, and the many other issues that are tearing this nation apart.
I found it amusing that earlier on your station Ray Kelly bemoans the fact that the police force is down by thousands due to budjet cuts and yet is willing to go along with a brutal raid of a movement that actually supports the creation of more jobs more public funds. They should stand with Occupy Wall St. Not against it.
They are raising everything else prices are going up food gas houses cars mortgages rent and etc so when is the minimum wage pay rate going to be RAISED my name is joshua mootoo I would like to know something about this .......please.....
I am deeply saddened by Bloomberg's eviction of protesters - repression that mirrors similar actions in other countries like Egypt. I am also disappointed with all those New Yorkers who say they sympathize with the OWS protesters but nevertheless endorse the mayor's actions. It is naive and historically inaccurate to presume that democratic change can occur without some disruption to the status quo. You cannot celebrate the Civil Rights Movement and disdain the OWS protesters.
I agree with the issues that the protesters are venting about. What I don't understand is for the the last century and more Black Americans have been complaing about the same issues such as the economy, not enough food, high prices and high rent; but most of all POLICE MISCONDUCT. I know this is not a racial issue but maybe if these people would have seen how out of control our society was getting when Black people were fighting for equal rights then maybe these issues would not have reached thier backyards. I feel for them but it has been a way of life for my people forever. I hope maybe they will see what we have endured. Wow just as I am writing this Hope from Harlem just expressed the same view on the phone...
Three cheers for New York's Finest,Bravest,Strongest,and Boldest. If you are a true New Yorker(born & raised here),you will know who I'm cheering . New York City has the finest uniformed civil servants in the world. It was time for all those disrespectful out of towners to move out of Zuccotti Park.
Kids, Go home & cry in your Trust Funds.
The cops were absolutely wrong for invading without warning, attacking the protestors and destroying their property! How is this different from terrorism?
When protesters helped end the vietnam war by taking to the streets and marching on Washington DC, no one said "Oh, yes, I support your right to demonstrate, but not underneath MY window, I want to go to the park and you are messing it up." The occupy wall street protesters are protesting for YOUR rights that you are losing every day. The people on your channel are so disturbed about the protesters exercising their rights because they are beaten down and brainwashed. It is obvious that these sheeple can't see the forest for the trees. They would rather live in hell than stand up for themselves. Also, we are obviously suffering under a Facist Police Regime. You will never see this kind of nazi-like abuse employed against the football and church pedophiles, Enron, et cetera who not only break the laws, but morally defecate on the rest of the human race because they are the 1% who donate politically to the slush funds that permit the present politicians to maintain power who have to keep the rest of the country down. I can't believe that everybody isn't taking to the streets to demonstrate. Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it .
Love your show! Regarding the eviction of the protesters at the park, I am glad they were evicted. I think it might get them thinking that they need to march on a more meaningful site. The Wall St. crowd took bailouts ... because they were offered. But it was the local politicians who approved said bailouts. President Obama had a big hand in this too. They should march on Albany and Washington, DC.
I'm glad Bloomberg cleaned the park up. It was out of control, dangerous and filthy. If those protesters want respect ... protest like a job. I stand 7and 1/2 hours everyday at my job ... then go home and eat some food like alot of us working stiffs. They should do the same - they get their message across but carry themselves with some dignity and get the hell home.
Oh. That's what real New Yorkers do ... if they were lazy. The rest of us REAL New Yorkers are working any job to make a livin'. Nothing was handed to us ....
The movement isn’t about Zuccoti Park. The movement is about overthrowing the power structure. It doesn’t matter whether the protesters stay in Zuccoti Park or not.
I'm not surprised what the police did. That's what we get when we have a major is from the 1%.
This just remind me about what had happed in Tian-A-Men square in Beijing, in China, in June, 4th, 1989. The Chinese Government used Army, while the Major use policemen.
Yes, the laws didn't say the protestors can protest with clothes on them, too. So, isn't that mean they have to be naked? What a joke! Hahaha!
If you live in this part of Lower Manhattan, as I do, you have been subjected to numerous assaults on your personal life, mainly from the horror of 9/11. Since then, the ongoing infrastructure repairs + upgrades, relentless construction, street closings, hordes of mindless tourists, and numerous related disruptions, makes the choice of "Zucotti Park" (which was never called that before) for this OWS initiative beyond comprehension.
If, as a protester, you knew where you were, if you had a mild understanding of the logistics of this neighborhood in its recent history, and you were a decent human being, you would not impose on this battered part of the City and its local citizens one more event.
I can only guess you do not care about how you affect others in your immediate vicinity and have a short memory span. There are myriad locales in NYC to conduct a mass grievance, rightly protected by our First Amendment, but to do it over here reveals serious ignorance and/or egregious insensitivity. And to me immediately discredits their intent.
I propose a new location for protest e 79 and 5 ave in front of Bloomberg house, you will recognise it by the 2 cops posted in front of his house 24/7
Upper East Side
I agree with the Mayor, First Amendment rights do not include tents and seizure of another's property to the exclusion of the rights of others. They're made their point. Now it's time to leave.
A poet and writer living in NYC
See a lecture on the French Revolution at Bill Gates’ sponsored learning site, www.khanacademy.org, and click on French Revolution history, Part I, where you’ll learn how Louis XVI locked his protesters out of their assembly hall, and weighted his vote against their 99%, until they staged the French Revolution. It is an interesting story to see how the more things change, the more they remain the same.
The disruptions to residents, businesses, commuters, people who work in the area, etc., caused by the protestors in Zucotti Park are highlighting (to borrow a phrase from former Vice President Al Gore) AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH. And I'd love to see the city successfully sued for allowing the NYPD to engage in its police-state actions of last night... And while we're at it, let's have a recall election to boot Mayor Mike "I could care less that New Yorkers voted TWICE to limit the mayor and city council to two terms" Bloomberg OUT OF OFFICE! Thank you.
The big point many callers seem to be missing is the idea of Civil Disobedience. The whole idea is to cause a disturbance in order to get attention for your cause. If you camp out in Floyd Bennett Field and don't bother anyone, NO ONE will pay attention to you.
You're SUPPOSED to cause a non-violent inconvenience, and break the law, and be prepared to be arrested.
Zuccotti Park was supposed to eventually be cleared out, so the next phase can begin.
I feel Bloomberg acted cowardly. To treat these people this way and to disrupt them at the time he did was just terrible. If he wanted them out of there he should have prevented them from living there in the first place. Why wait so long??? Why allow more and more people to move there??? I do not blame NYPD either. They are doing what they are told. However, they shouldn't have done so so forcefully.
i'm a native new yorker, born in queens, raised in brooklyn. i've spent over two weeks in and out of the park, both with and without a tent. i've seen all different aspects of this movement and as powerful as occupying the park is, or has been, i believe that the focus shouldn't be to create a permanent fixture in the park, but rather a temporary one, to use the park as a starting off point to reach out to people, the community and tourists in the area.
i can't tell anyone how to go about changing the world but i do know that we need to start somewhere, and we have.
Who cares about the rights of the people who live there. The people who live there are the people they are protesting. Burn down the joint.
I'm not sure whether I agree with OWS, or even know what they're all about. And I'm not sure whether or not they should have to leave that park. But what I am sure about is that I think it is disgusting how the NYPD have handled themselves. Their response has been totally disproportionate - I think using riot gear and guns like it is a war zone is outrageous, and really sets the wrong tone.
You have the right to Protest,but Dont move into the area you decide to protest in.I thought all parks closed at night.
Forest Park in Queens. So much space and once a hippie hangout in the seventies.
CHAIR PLAYER from Queens
I find the rationalizations of those who "agree with the protestors" but not with their choice of locale--- hypocritical.
What if Dr King had followed "all the rules". Or the brave souls at the luncheonette ??
Laws that infringe on the right to protest are unAmerican. And they NEED to be ignored
I agree with the decision.tents should not be allowed in public areas..homeless people are not allowed so Niether should these protesters...enough is enough, this protest is going nowhere fast..half of them protest corporate greed but the same people that helps corporations gain money.
Thomas from Brooklyn
Make no mistake Occupy wall street protesters were ambushed by choice of the Mayor who admitted that the city of new york had not been officially served with any legal document prior to ordering the police to ambush the OWS people, therefore the right of freedom of speech was violated. History is clear that social changes have never happened without incidents. I believe the judge was wrong and did not apply nor enforce the constitutional rights.
The eviction at Zuchotti Park reveals that NY is actually a police state. Are we paying tax dollars to fund police abuse of citizens?
Where's the Courtesy, Professionalism and Respect? The NYPD is doing the bidding of the politicians and the rich, not upholding our constitutional right to assemble, protest and have a free press. The larger issue here is the way our laws and regulations were corrupted to funnel billions to the rich - for all those multi billion dollar thieves, where are the police in riot gear to confiscate their ill-got belongings?
I don't understand why people think these protestors have a right to set up camp in a public area for months. Homeless people are not permitted to do this, why should protesters be allowed to? I heard live radio commentary today, from a protester, that the police did in fact approach the park with bullhorns and gave people warnings to get their belongings and leave prior to going in and forcing them to go. The people that had their belongings removed were the ones that refused to follow the instruction of police. As far as the time of night, when else would be good? You cannot have this melee going on during business hours, or with children on the street! Give these poor police officers a break! Personally, I thank them for their patience during this. I certainly could not go on for hours with people yelling and gesturing in My face, who could!
Thank you NYPD! I am tired of my commute being disrupted, and filth. Thank you FDNY for removing potentially explosive devices (generators). Thank you EMS for removing the mentally ill to hospitals.
Staten Island (Lower Manhattan Worker)
TYPICAL BLOOMBERG USING OUR TAX DOLLARS TO PROTECT HIS PRECIOUS MANHATTAN.
I have tried calling you but cannot get through. I am one of the lawyers that represented the protesters in court today. You just showed me speaking on one of your clips. Your host incorrectly said that this is a private park. It is not, which is why the protesters have First Amendment rights there.
The party's over! Have your voices heard without camping out where I walk! Try an MBA and getba job at a community based organization helping the masses. Kudos Mayor Bloomberg!
Unfortunately, the Court got it right: . . . the occupiers had not "demonstrated that the rules adopted by the owners of the property... are not reasonable time, place, and manner restrictions permitted under the First Amendment" In other words they can "visit" there (public forum status) but they cannot "live" there (loitering). Their eviction was contrary to court order and Judge Stillman had to issue an order only hours after he made the ruling. I hope this is read tonight on the air to let the protestors know how proud I am of all those amazing Americans who love their country and countrymen so much that they are "doing" something about it. When a government has broken loose from its chains of a Constitution to the point where the "establishment of justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare and secure the blessing of liberty" are no longer visible to American people, they not only have a right but a "duty" to seek redress or even to remove such a government where their rights are no longer recognized. God bless our patriots of Wall Street.
What nerve Mayor Bloomberg has, to actually Quote the first Amendment. He is a hypocrite. When he was voted in, he stepped all over the First Amendment, regarding the smoking law by enhancing our existing laws that gave everyone their rights in restaurants smoking sections etc. He did not run on this subject, yet it was one of the first things he used his power to put in place. Then putting a ridiculous law on the books about smoking out doors etc. Pushing threw his reelection by not going to the people.
How we should live according to Bloomberg. I cannot stand this guy.
He is a real --------------/you know what. sincerely, JQ Citizen 10
Typical Bloomberg, I guess he didn't want to get shown up by the Mayor in Oakland. It's good to see how quickly they can mobilize the police and sanitation when the rich tenants in Manhattan are affected by a problem. How are they doing with all the rapes, robberies, and murders going on all over the city in the mostly poor and middle class neighborhoods? And let's hope the Mayor and his regime can act this quickly next time there is a snow storm, there are still trees littering the streets in the Bronx where I live from a few weeks ago. Guess we don't rate as important because it's just Blacks and Hispanics that live here.
Please get rid of these People. Their "Occupying" will accomplish nothing..I say The Mayor should take final action and have Them expelled for good
The police do not protect citizens, they protect capitalists who own property. It was a good statement for the protesters to occupy what should be a public space but instead is privately owned by a capitalist.
The protesters are courageous and aware of what's going on. Everyone else is either afraid of losing their jobs working for capitalists wrongly thinking that one day they will be a capitalist, or they are unconscious mesmerised by consumer goods.
Paul, Upper East Side