The Ferguson protesters have proven themselves to be destructive, violent, and completely uninterested in anything having to do with “justice.” Not only are they okay with this assessment—they’re completely proud of it.
In fact, they’re beginning to look an awful lot like another “justice movement” we got to know quite well a few years back.
Back in August, an enterprising writer over at Buzzfeed engaged in some solid journalism and noticed that the Ferguson protests—namely, the evolving encampments were beginning to look a little like the Occupy Wall Street protests:
As the marches in Ferguson grow smaller, this apparently semi-permanent encampment has echoes of Occupy Wall Street and other radical encampments who sought to claim and hold territory in 2011 and 2012.
“Why do we need a leader?” Alexander asked. “I’m saying everybody can be leaders.” The camp even has a few Occupy veterans who drifted in during the last week and are giving them pointers on how to deal with things like tear gas — a threat Alexander said is still present, especially as their numbers grow.
A couple of miles away in downtown Ferguson, across the street from the still-under-construction police station, another group is also digging in. Unlike the protesters on W Florissant, the gathering downtown is older and includes more women than men. Many of the demonstrators leave by the middle of the night, though someone is always out and always will be until they “get some answers,” according to organizer Angela Whitman.
“We come out when it’s storming and raining,” she said. “We don’t play around. We don’t care what the weather is. We’ll be out here as long as it takes.”
The atmosphere downtown is almost familial, with chairs and tables spread out across the street corner. Friday night, the group had prayers and competing chants between men and women, among other things.
In fact, Occupy is more interconnected with Ferguson than was immediately apparent when people started to organize.
The community organizers who turned Zuccotti Park in New York and McPherson Square in DC into public urinals back in 2011 didn’t just fade into the background once city officials scraped their filth off the sidewalk; they’ve been protesting Walmart (and plan to do so on Black Friday, just in case you were planning on standing in line for a $10 DVD player or something,) and more recently using their microphone to help promote uprisings not only in Ferguson, but all across the country. They’re providing an online home base, movement updates, resources for protesters, and help connecting to local protests like the ones we’ve seen in Portland, Dallas, and Washington, D.C.
They’re even participating in violent assaults on public officials.
So, violence. Assault. Destruction of property. What’s next? Occupy’s history isn’t really encouraging:
Occupy brought us filth, violence, rampant drug use, and rape and sexual assault—and the people of Ferguson deserve much better.DONATE
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