FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Call It a Revolution

by MISSY BEATTIE

Snarling riot cops evicted protestors and raided Zuccotti Park Tuesday morning, two months after Occupy Wall Street (OWS) was launched in lower Manhattan.  Spin-off groups across the country were shut down as well.

Just minutes after I wrote the above paragraph, my son called from NYC to update that activists, amassing again, are being arrested.  Several hundred demonstrators are marching through the financial district to block traffic.  “Who do you serve?  Who do you protect?”  These questions are directed at the arresting officers.

This past week, I’ve viewed videos of policemen, stomping their official authority across the necks and backs of members of the 99 percent who’ve gathered to demand change with focus on lack of jobs, social inequality, injustice, the taxpayer bailed-out bankers responsible for crashing the economy, and the failure to hold corporate criminals accountable.  Meanwhile, protestors are being cuffed (as I write) and pepper sprayed by a paramilitary-like police force.

Criminal, too, is the destruction of libraries at occupation areas, an act almost as unthinkable as the loss of human rights.  Books are venerated, the compilation of ideas, an author’s vision, life map, revelations, inked to paper, like lyrics swirling to music, records of the past, present, what could and/or shouldn’t be.

Just hours before morning on Tuesday, police descended to machete freedom of speech and the right to assemble.  Let’s make this less visible, the mayors must have said during conference calls. Like George Bush, they instructed their serfs to act in the absence of light— so Bushian and reminiscent of a president’s directive that dead soldiers would arrive to shattered families only at night.

What Americans can’t see, they, most likely, will not acknowledge.   George Bush prevented photographs of returning war dead. Barack Obama learned from the experts and is, now, the master of universal subterfuge.

Good morning, Australia.  Please welcome the US Marines.  This is a policy shift to counter China’s power.  You Aussies will be grateful.  We will call this a partnership that’s, um, similar to a coalition.   Of the coerced.  Imagine you are ten years old, hands against the wall, and the United States of America is, as Obama says, “…here to stay.” Disregard the slapping sound.  This is horseplay.  The bases are yours, not ours.   The US is with you in a constructive role to protect oil and minerals.  This will not hurt.  And don’t complain to anyone or Mommy and Daddy might be assassinated.

It’s just that we are “winding down” wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and the horses require other ranges to roam.  The Empire rides, hard and fast.

Forgive the detour.  I wandered from my intent to examine the mayoral edict to rid the 99 percent of its voice and accede to the 1 percent.  And to emphasize that these smaller political fish miscalculated the repercussions of their order.

The battle for justice didn’t end this past week when local politicians allowed acts of violence not unlike the violations we condemn in countries we bomb to spread “democracy.”  Witness to this is inspiring increased action.  Protests are mounting.  Activists are strategizing.  This movement isn’t going to whimper.  We are watching the aftermath of a decision that underscores the viability of OWS.  This is not a one-act drama.

More:  I just returned from Occupy Baltimore where we assembled at the Howard Street Bridge.  “This is what democracy looks like,” we shouted, along with “jobs not cuts.”

The crowd, numbering well over 200 participants, has grown since my last visit to the occupation zone. In solidarity with protestors at raided sites, we stood on the busy corner during rush hour.

We must choose our targets wisely.  How about the buildings in midtown Manhattan where the morning talk shows broadcast inanities such as how to bake the perfect turkey?

The times are imperfect. Perilous, really.  Actions, small and large, demand maximum impact.  Again, this is not a one-act drama.  People are angry.  And they will not acquiesce to big business, as usual.  I think we can call this a revolution.

Missy Beattie lives in Baltimore, Maryland.  She can be reached at: missybeat@gmail.com.

Missy Beattie has written for National Public Radio and Nashville Life Magazine. She was an instructor of memoirs writing at Johns Hopkins’ Osher Lifelong Learning Institute in BaltimoreEmail: missybeat@gmail.com

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

February 22, 2017
Mike Whitney
Liberals Beware: Lie Down With Dogs, Get Up With Fleas
John Grant
On Killers and Bullshitters*
Peter Linebaugh
Catherine Despard, Abolitionist
Patrick Cockburn
The Bitter Battle for Mosul
Ted Rall
Sue the Bastards? It’s Harder Than You Think
Yoav Litvin
The Emergence of the Just Jew
Kim Scipes
Strategic Thinking and Organizing Resistance
Norman Pollack
Mar-a-Lago, Ideological Refuge: Berchtesgaden, II
Fred Donner
Nixon and the Chennault Affair: From Vietnam to Watergate
Carl Kandutsch
Podesta vs. Trump
Ike Nahem
To the Memory of Malcolm X: Fifty Years After His Assassination
Jesse Jackson
Trump’s Tough Talk Won’t Fix Chicago
Paul Donnelly
Betsy DeVos and the War on Public Education
Ebony Slaughter-Johnson
The End of an Alliance for Police Reform
Richard Lawless
Wall Street Demanded the Nuclear Option and the Congress Delivered
Liaquat Ali Khan
Yes, Real Donald Trump is a Muslim!
Ryan LaMothe
“Fire” and Free Speech
CounterPunch News Service
Bloody Buffalo Billboards
February 21, 2017
Sharmini Peries - Michael Hudson
Finance as Warfare: the IMF Lent to Greece Knowing It Could Never Pay Back Debt
CJ Hopkins
Goose-stepping Our Way Toward Pink Revolution
John Wight
Firestarter: the Unwelcome Return of Tony Blair
Roger Harris
Lenin Wins: Pink Tide Surges in Ecuador…For Now
Shepherd Bliss
Japanese American Internment Remembered, as Trump Rounds Up Immigrants
Boris Kagarlitsky
Trump and the Contradictions of Capitalism
Robert Fisk
The Perils of Trump Addiction
Deepak Tripathi
Theresa May: Walking the Kingdom Down a Dark Alley
Sarah Anderson
To Save Main Street, Tax Wall Street
Howard Lisnoff
Those Who Plan and Enjoy Murder
Franklin Lamb
The Life and Death Struggle of the Children of Syria
Binoy Kampmark
A Tale of Two Realities: Trump and Israel
Kim C. Domenico
Body and Soul: Becoming Men & Women in a Post-Gender Age
Mel Gurtov
Trump, Europe, and Chaos
Stephen Cooper
Steinbeck’s Road Map For Resisting Donald Trump
February 20, 2017
Bruce E. Levine
Humiliation Porn: Trump’s Gift to His Faithful…and Now the Blowback
Melvin Goodman
“Wag the Dog,” Revisited
Robert Hunziker
Fukushima: a Lurking Global Catastrophe?
David Smith-Ferri
Resistance and Resolve in Russia: Memorial HRC
Kenneth Surin
Global India?
Norman Pollack
Fascistization Crashing Down: Driving the Cleaver into Social Welfare
Patrick Cockburn
Trump v. the Media: a Fight to the Death
Susan Babbitt
Shooting Arrows at Heaven: Why is There Debate About Battle Imagery in Health?
Matt Peppe
New York Times Openly Promotes Formal Apartheid Regime By Israel
David Swanson
Understanding Robert E. Lee Supporters
Michael Brenner
The Narcissism of Donald Trump
Martin Billheimer
Capital of Pain
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail