Overheard on CNN.com: What exactly do the protesters want?
Police ticketed more than 700 "Occupy Wall Street" demonstrators crossing the Brooklyn Bridge on Saturday in New York.
October 3rd, 2011
07:28 PM ET

Overheard on CNN.com: What exactly do the protesters want?

The recent "Occupy Wall Street" protests have been a hot topic on CNN.com lately, and the stories about them have prompted a great deal of discussion among readers. Many readers engaged in very heated debates, while many others wondered what the demonstrations were really about.

Wall Street protests enter 3rd week, pick up steam

Some readers have applauded the efforts of the protesters:

carnac95 said, “I think this movement is AWESOME!  It's about time the left be heard. We are hard working Americans that believe in science, innovation, compassion and taking our country back from the far right that only want "each man for himself." We are ALL in this together!!!”

JesusLizard said, “We should all be protesting. Sick of CEOs with their $10 million golden parachutes as they leave corporations that fail to make a profit to go work for another.  Sick of the billions our government has thrown at the banksters.  And a $14 trillion debt is unacceptable! Take the protest to Washington!”

Jones3 said, “I LOVE the protesters.  This is what this Country is all about.  I applaud their courage. The nationwide protests in this Country have: given people Civil Rights, stopped the last stupid War we were pushed into (Vietnam) and caused many other good things to come.  What else can we do with such a messed up Government?”

Others have indicated uncertainty over what the protesters’ exact aims are:

goingsoon said, “What exactly is the goal of the protests?  "End corruption" is too vague.  I wonder how many of these protesters are just sitting in, getting arrested with no ability to define the outcome they seek.”

randaxe said, “I still don't understand the objectives. What do these guys want to happen? More taxes on the rich? More regulation? The purpose has to be clear enough to demand for a particular action versus just saying the economy sucks.”

One reader expressed his bewilderment with the protests, asserting that the protesters are essentially going nowhere by protesting the various issues at Wall Street:

ExLonghorn said, “This whole protest thing is baffling to me. American consumers are pushing for ever-lower prices, which push local companies out of business and which push corporations to move costs overseas.  Then everyone complains that there aren't enough jobs, and that incomes are stagnant or declining. Well, duh. That's how this whole thing works, folks. Either buy American, or get ready to compete with 2 billion people in Asia who are willing to work harder than you for a tenth of your income. If this protest is about fairness, I humbly submit to you that WASHINGTON is the place to protest."

Other readers attempted to better explain the protesters' cause:

Libertycall said, “We are for taxation fairness and financial discipline, but not while Wall Street disposes of our income and savings. It's not anarchy, strikes, disorder we're aiming for, because our economy is in a poor shape.  We want to educate people who think they do well only by comparison to starving, unemployed, and desperate. We are on a course of becoming a 2nd Greece, and we want to prevent it, while we still can.”

ddelrose said, "People are speaking up about their frustrations of living in a country that has outsourced their jobs, corporate profits being made off the backs of those that do work, affordable healthcare that is unattainable, a Wall Street that has forgotten about taking care of its investors and politicians that have sent us down the river for their own goals. It is time to speak up...and stand up to what is happening here in America. If we don't, this country will never survive."

soundoff (118 Responses)
  1. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    @ ANONYMOUS:
    "Wish" would be better used as a noun than as a pretentious verb, in the context of your message.
    "Want" would be good, and you don't have to scream in capital letters.

    October 4, 2011 at 7:55 am | Report abuse |
    • Livefreeordie

      Joey (Mr Monk) your being a bit OCD here. When people type from emotion, they seldom check correct spelling or punctuation. This does not mean they are illiterate.

      October 4, 2011 at 5:36 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Ernie

    If these people think we need an "Arab spring", they really should go live in a middle east country for awhile & they will see how good we have it in the USA even during a recession. If they would spend their energy trying to get a job or, better yet, create a job for themselves, they would not have time to worry about how much money someone else makes. What do they think our country would look like without Wall St. investment? Don't they know, that even with its corruption, our stock indurstry is the engine that drives our economy? This protest reminds me of common "insane" riots where people just go out & destroy their own neighborhood for no reason other than sure spite to their fellow man. Or, is it possible the whole show is being "put on" by the thugs that want to turn us into a commie nation? Maybe they should take a look at Greece & see what happens when everyone gets something for nothing, bankrupt country. But wait, we are already that, now the cry babies want to take the last dime from someone else.

    October 4, 2011 at 8:30 am | Report abuse |
    • Ernie Killer

      Ha, look at this moron, sitting there with his internet, preaching about how Americans should stop whining about recession.. You obviously haven't been hit by the recession. You should shut your mouth on the subject. Oh no that's right, your stupdity is important! We all have to know how stupid you really are... Good. Yes, we all understand that you are very very stupid and that's all well and dandy, but let's talk about something serious. And that is that the world has been flattened as of late. A process that has been trickling upon us the past few hundred years is finally reaching it's pinacle. Idiots like you who don't want to have to get off the couch and would rather use the remote, should really just shut up and go away. Crawl under a crevice and ride your so-called recession extremities out. Ride them out with your sweat dripping from your stern brow, past your cross-eyes from generations of deformed inbreeding, while your once-neighbours-turned-homeless people stare at you wondering if you're looking at them or if you're looking at paint dryh on cnn. Eating your doughnuts.. Prancing about the internet that you're going to give up doughnuts and become some kind of super hero, fighting all terrorists and all the other stereotypes of the American enemy. All talk, in hopes that you'll impress your supposed online girlfriend.. When in reality, your online girlfriend is an obese perverted man who likes sniffing bicycle seats and imagining what your face would look like as a mask.

      October 4, 2011 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
    • liberty call

      For those scathing the protesters with name calling or puerile interpretations of reality. We live in the year 2011, have lived under extreme capitalism, seen where the lack of accountability and Wall Street mingling into law-making leads to, we saw failed communism and Arab despotism. In contrast, we have the examples of countries where people have a chance to live decent lives, and are motivated to work hard and save $$ because they trust their banking and laws, their police force and news casters.

      October 4, 2011 at 5:44 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    I read Ernie's 8:30 AM post again to find the doughnut section, so perhaps he gave up that delicacy while I was not around last month, or for this past Lent.
    Although I empathize with every unemployed person who actually wants to work, I think that everyone, including Ernie Killer, would profit by considering what Ernie said at 8:30.
    I don't know Ernie, but I agree with his opinion on the addressed aspects of our extremely complex economic problems.
    @ Ernie:
    I don't eat any doughnuts.

    October 4, 2011 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
  4. moon13

    what these guys want is a simple life: a job, a place to live and food on the table! Many so-called "corporation America" have been outsourcing to other countries instead of hiring our own! shame on them! Our government is too busy bailing out the banks and giant corporations, what about we little peoples' credit card/mortage/college etc.. loans! – And these CEOs are still making millions (plus bonusssss)!

    October 4, 2011 at 2:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • JRS ONE

      Where are the "little people" going to get credit/mortgages/college loans if the banks go under? The zombie slacker mob? It was the little people that couldn't pay back their debt that caused this in the first place. I do not feel sorry for someone who lost a home they couldn't afford in the first place.

      October 8, 2011 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Zeya

    Good for those who are able to protest, I wish I could 😀

    October 4, 2011 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Amy

      amen 🙂

      October 4, 2011 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dana Williams

      Don't we all?

      October 4, 2011 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Benjamen Fraschitti

    I wholy agree, my girlfriend and I are out there every day with them in our minds and hearts. Go USA!

    October 4, 2011 at 2:43 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Benjamen Fraschitti

    oops, still new to this website, i wanted my earlier comment as areply to your comment Zeya, but anyway 😉

    October 4, 2011 at 2:45 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    There are writers here who complain about outsourcing, CEO salaries, and bonuses.
    These writers are sometimes unable to spell, construct a sentence, or even begin a paragraph with a capital letter.
    If you can't write a sentence or spell, you cannot expect anybody to hire you to do anything better than raking leaves.

    October 4, 2011 at 3:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • KCon

      If our country spent more money and effort improving our public schools and keeping further education affordable, maybe you would see improved spelling among the masses. Don't worry. Now, with student loans and unemployment the way they are, you could probably get an English major with a degree to to rake your lawn.

      October 5, 2011 at 9:16 am | Report abuse |
  9. Ken Keeton

    My hopes and wishes go out to the protestors. I wish I had the ability to join the protests... maybe if some come to my city.

    October 4, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    @ Ken Keeton, 3:37:
    If you want a secure economic foundation for your life, go to the trouble to learn
    the difference between "your" and "you're."
    In your sentence, you meant "you're."

    October 4, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • libertycall

      you might read too deep into details and loose access to the big picture (i purposely din not capitalize –> solidarity with those sometimes posting from mobiles and who try not be sidetracked from the important issues by distractions.) we don't put down people, if we criticize we direct our thoughts on facts, and refrain from cheap personal attacks.

      October 4, 2011 at 7:21 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    I hire (and fire) people.
    I wouldn't hire anybody who was unable to write a short comment in correct English.
    Most of the people I hire also know several other languages.

    October 4, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Report abuse |
  12. gman999

    What do they want? Why, a job on Wall Street.

    October 4, 2011 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    BTW, if someone came to my house to apply for a job raking leaves, and I realized that he could not write or speak correctly in SOME language, I would be unlikely to hire him to rake my leaves, since he had not applied himself in school and therefore probably had not learned to think. Those who can't think may destroy something of value without any intention of doing so.
    Before you complain about not being hired to work, ask yourself what you can do and what your work is worth to an employer.

    October 4, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    @ Livefreeordie:
    I disagree strongly.
    I am a professional pianist. To do my job, I have to play with intense emotion and project that emotion. Almost invariably, I play the right notes.
    One can have it all.

    October 4, 2011 at 5:50 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    @ LFOD:
    You did the same your/you're thing.
    Try, "you're being a bit OCD..."
    That's correct English.
    I hope you're not a psychiatrist or a psychologist, although with today's schools, one never knows.
    No mental health professional would make a "sight" diagnosis of OCD.

    October 4, 2011 at 6:18 pm | Report abuse |
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