Thoughts of a Wall St. occupier

With the occupation of Wall St now in its third week, occupier Yotam Marom shares his thoughts

October 10, 2011 · 3 min read

 Thousands of people have worked and fought for it, have given it their time, their bodies, their ideas, their blood. People have used their bodies as shields, sent letters of solidarity, marched, slept out, donated, tweeted, and more. There are thousands more still who have not been with us, whether because of geographical reasons or because they are busy struggling elsewhere.

 I have been involved, in some way, with the occupation on Wall Street since the first planning meeting a number of months ago, and I have been out there almost every day since the occupation actually began, though mostly keeping quiet and working on the sidelines – often critically. I have participated in assemblies and working groups, done outreach to community organizations, pushed demands, been to dozens of meetings, gone hoarse from chanting about the banks, been bruised by metal police batons while marching for Troy Davis, and had about a million incredible conversations – at the occupation at Liberty Plaza itself, in other political contexts around New York, and even in jail with the 87 friends I made during the mass arrests of September 24th. I am not an authority, and others have struggled and sacrificed much more than I, but I have learned a lot; enough, I think, to begin sharing some of it.

 The struggle is still very much underway; those of us who can, who have that privilege, should be out in the streets, so now might not be the time for the most thorough analysis. It is, however, important for occupiers to be writing in our own words – to reach out to the many around the world who want to be a part of this in some way, to offer our own analyses (infinitely more powerful than those provided by pundits from far away), and to counter the media black-out we are experiencing. Though the press is now somewhat intrigued by us, and alarmed by police brutality, it still has very little to say about the actual content and processes of this occupation: the spontaneous working groups that emerge to deal with any issue that comes up, the remarkable de-centralization, the actions we have carried out in solidarity with labor struggles around the city, the public education taking place at the occupation, or the incredible display of direct democracy practiced in the camp.

Read the full piece  at Z-net

 


Shukri Abdi and the urgent need for anti-racist education

The Shukri Abdi case is a painful reminder that UK schools are not safe for everyone. We need an explicitly anti-racist curriculum, argues Remi Joseph-Salisbury

Locked out during lockdown

Already dealing with the effects of the hostile environment in education, Sanaz Raji explains the new challenges facing international students during the pandemic

Should the left care about blockchain technology?

Despite its utopian promises of digital democracy, Thomas Redshaw argues socialists should be wary of embracing blockchain technology


Review – Regicide or Revolution? What petitioners wanted, September 1648 – February 1649 by Nora Carlin

Norah Carlin's analysis of the Levellers' petitions reaffirms the radical nature of the English revolution, argues John Rees.

50 years of gay liberation

Sam Stroud looks back at the UK’s first ever LGBTQ+ demonstration and explains its significance for liberation struggles today

Red Pepper interviews Momentum’s NCG

Join us on Friday 27 November from 5pm as we talk to Momentum NCG members Sonali Bhattacharyya and Deborah Hermanns about what's next for the left