Published on October 5th, 2011 | by Mace & Crown Administrator1
WALL STREET PROTESTS SPREAD TO NORFOLK
Written By: Derek Page, Staff Writer
In a recent response to the “Occupy Wall Street” protests in New York City’s Liberty Square, a swath of cities have joined in on the cause setting up movements all over the country. Even a number of international occupations have risen in countries such as Germany, Canada, Finland, and Australia.
The “Occupy Wall Street” demonstrations have inspired a concerted effort around the nation to speak out against the financial and political system and to bring a stop to the role corporations and their money play in our nation’s political system and the injustices they impose. This movement in whole seeks to bring a voice to the people in which the corrupt of this country have tried to silence. Recently, a small number of people in Norfolk decided they have had enough as well, and have joined in with the movement.
“Occupy Norfolk” began with James McPherson, a 24 year-old Chesapeake resident and Old Dominion graduate. “It started the other night as I was watching the protests in NYC and wishing that I could go. Instead, I decided we should bring it here.” McPherson says he wishes to avoid candidates, ideologies, and political parties in order to send a message that everyone can get behind.
He states his key components of the change are democracy, transparency, oversight, and consensus. “What you see in these movements all across the nation and here in Norfolk is that people are scared, anxious and frustrated. People are also beginning to realize that a handful of the American population, or the entire world for that matter, are benefitting from the current system of affairs. “We are fighting to remove their influence from politics, curb their power in the financial sector, and restore democracy and transparency to America,” says McPherson.
The Norfolk based occupation began in haste, but is quickly building up speed. The group is still working out the logistics (shelter, food, location, and itineraries) for their occupation set to begin on Thursday, Oct. 6 at 9a.m. The organization is working on things such as how the group will make decisions, what principles, demands, and grievances will be at the forefront of the protest, how to delegate tasks, and how to manage meeting sites.
The group is adamant in their views and goals and wants feverously for their message to be heard. The event will feature live music and artistic demonstrations, testimonies, marches, and presentations of data and relevant information. “We will participate in distributing voter registration material and attempt to make people aware of how they can begin to enact change,” said McPherson.
Most importantly, the group asserts that this movement attempts to bring change through peaceful protest and through the exercising of their first amendment rights, being freedom of speech and the right to general assembly.
“Occupy Norfolk” is a peaceful and non-violent movement that seeks to link itself to protesters on Wall Street and other major cities. 99 percent of America, regardless of race, color, creed, religion, sex, ability, or any qualifier could benefit from a better deal,” says McPherson.
This deal includes reform of the financial sector, ending foreign occupations and American imperialism and putting jobs in the hands of everyday people and securing their homes, and ensuring the American people can elect their own representatives without their politicians being purchased by corporations. The group can be found on Facebook and Twitter under Occupy Norfolk and is currently in the process of constructing their own website (www.occupynorfolk.com). If you express an interest in the cause it is very much encouraged to participate. Every single person can make a difference.