A look at Occupy movements in three states
An Occupy Wall Street protester dressed as Santa Claus walks at New York's Zuccotti Park on Wednesday.
November 3rd, 2011
11:19 PM ET

A look at Occupy movements in three states

It's been almost two months since the Occupy Wall Street protest began in New York. The movement spread to cities across the country, with many having different issues and challenges.

Many Occupy protesters generally assert, among other things, that the nation's wealthiest 1% holds inordinate sway over the remaining 99% of the population. CNN Radio reported from a few different states to get a pulse on the movement.

Click the audio player to hear the report:


The Occupy Wall Street encampment in New York’s Zuccotti Park has taken on an air of permanency since a storm pelted protesters with sleet, snow and rain a few days ago. Tents are not only tolerated by police now, they cover the public plaza from one end to the other. Protesters say they are there for the long haul.

“Our goal at this point is just to stay here. And as long as we continue to exist ... we continue to be a movement rather than just a flash in the pan,” Jeffrey Brewer said as he took part in a discussion about diversity at an area of the park demonstrators call the Think Tank.

While the park is the public face of Occupy Wall Street, problem-solving is largely taking place off-site. Working groups tackling various issues meet in nearby public atriums and restaurants daily.

“We’ve got a lot of work to do,” said Rick DeVoe, who has been staying at the park for more than a month.

“What most people are not aware of, is all the work that’s being done constantly,” DeVoe said. “I’m a resident occupier, been here since Day 9, and work 10-, 12-, 16-hour days. And I don’t think that people realize that, that we have dozens of working groups.”

While some are discussing ways to reform the system from within, others, including DeVoe, want alternatives to a system that they see corrupted by big business.

To people outside the movement who assert that Occupy protesters haven't put forward specific goals, protester Tim Weldon said: “What kind of social change ever happened in 48 days? I mean just think about it. Just read history.”

No confrontations between police and protesters have taken place in New York in recent days. Both sides seem to be tolerating each other for the time being.


A few hundred Occupy protesters in Oakland, California, took over a vacant building on Wednesday night. Police ordered them to vacate, and demonstrators set fires and hurled bricks, bottles and firecrackers at the officers.

One hundred were arrested. The violence followed a day in which an estimated 7,000 protesters peacefully participated in a general strike.

In Los Angeles, Occupy committees are defining a list of national demands. Two of the demands being considered are breaking up banks in the manner that Congress broke up AT&T in 1984.

A second demand is balancing representation in Congress. One of the committee's complaints is that only the rich get elected, and that members of Congress represent only the nation's wealthiest 1%.


Dozens of protesters marched to a Wells Fargo bank building in Atlanta this week, protesting now-familiar tropes like income inequality, bank bailouts and CEO bonuses. But another issue looms large in the city.

"As far as I'm concerned, the homeless are welcome here," said Latron Price. "They are the people who have really gotten the brunt of an unfair system."

Homeless people have joined the ranks of the Occupy protesters in cities around the country. In Atlanta, the movement itself is somewhat homeless after police cleared protesters' downtown base camp, Woodruff Park.

Protesters have temporarily moved into a homeless shelter. The protesters vowed to "retake" Woodruff Park this weekend.

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soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. loupgarous

    If there's a "national roundup" of Occupy members going on now, all I can say is "about f-ing time."

    November 7, 2011 at 8:56 am | Report abuse |
  2. loupgarous

    @newsjunkie: For every American in sympathy with Occupy protesters, I can promise you there are a hundred of us who are disgusted at their infantile, arrogant tactics – and enraged that anyone is seriously paying attention to them. We're also upset that Van Jones, the kook ex-con who Obama tried to slip in on us as Green Jobs Czar, is one of the main drivers of Occupy – it tells us that this "spontaneous protest" is just another way the most corrupt White House since the Grant administration is trying to concentrate more and more power into its own hands. The "demands" of Occupy protesters should be printed on 2-ply toilet paper, rolled up, and put to their appropriate use. Who are THEY to dictiate to the rest of the "99 percent"? We're still a democracy here, not a mobocracy.

    November 7, 2011 at 9:14 am | Report abuse |
    • DoNotWorry

      Maybe so, maybe no. I know a good number of people who support the Occupy movement, and two who do not. Just sayin. Who are Occupy to dictate an end to corporate-government corruption? Good citizens. We have never had a democracy in this country, although it is now technologically feasible. We once had a democractic Republic, which is now a shadow front for an oligarchy... rule by a few. The people are well aware of it whether you appreciate that or not.

      November 28, 2011 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
  3. DoNotWorry

    National roundup of citizens protesting government corruption is likely to increase the support for the protest. Oppression generally does that, it shows the true face of oppression to the people. We'd still be paying taxes to England if the King hadn't set in troops. Something to consider for fools who love corporate-government corruption and hate citizens who protest against it.

    November 28, 2011 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
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