By Kevin Aherne
Providence's chapter of the Occupy Movement was the latest of such groups to abandon their camps. Since October, Burnside Park had been home to dozens of tents and various make-shift shelters, serving as the homes for those protesting on behalf of the "99%. As in many cities, civic leaders had grown tired of the nuisance, and sought means to end the "occupation."
Rather than allowing themselves to be forcefully removed, Occupy Providence was able to negotiate with city officials, and left, contingent upon the opening of a new day-shelter in the Emmanuel House. Occupy members consider this a significant victory, as it shows how a united effort can bring change.
However, protesters in other cities have not fared as well. Arrests, injuries, and forceful evictions have been common in many of the Occupy cities. In Oakland, UC Davis, and Wall Street, police intervention spurned aggression, prompting public safety authorities to react with force, which often ended poorly for protesters.
These protests were an attempt to disrupt commerce and become a thorn in the side of those who hold the world's wealth. In fact, these protests seemed to be more of a nuisance and public safety threat than they were a strong message to the One Percenters. In some cases, the protesters were even fodder for mocking by the financial leaders (see twitter account: GSElevator).
So, WBOB audience, What are your thoughts? Has "Occupy!" been a worthwhile venture? Do you support or condemn their cause?
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