Influenced by the protests in Cairo that led to the Egyptian revolution earlier this year, protests have spread from state to state in the USA in demonstration against social and economic inequality.
The movement which President Barack Obama describes as “giving frustration a voice” started in Zuccotti Park NY over a month ago and has now spread to over 70 cities. Taking all social networking sites by storm the occupation has been embraced by many impressionable social bodies such as Russell Simmons, Susan Sarandon, Kanye West and even ice cream moguls Ben and Jerry are scooping in support.
However, not all New Yorkers agree that capitalism is responsible for the economic crisis and believe that the blame lies within a weak political regime. Senior economic writer Steve Moore of the Wall Street journal told Fox news, “There’s frustration of the fact that Obama’s policies have not worked. Salt against capitalism is frightening, if we see a double dip recession then it will just get into a situation where people will turn violent and we’ve seen that happen in places like London and Greece. Capitalism is going to save America, capitalism is the way out of this.”
Freedom of speech is the right to express beliefs and ideas without unwarranted government restriction guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, so when we saw videos on you.tube of peaceful protestors being attacked it raised question to how true civil rights really are. Chelsea Monthly exclusively spoke to Stuart Gold from Brooklyn about the atmosphere he told us, “Yes there have been instances but there’s not an intense battle between the local authorities and members of the public. When you’re out here you feel like you’re a part of something important, it’s like a political festival.” His feeling about the movement stands as follows, “As long as we have capitalism there will always be inequalities. At a time where all the American people are pulling together to better our economy then shouldn’t those who are more able to do so (financially) help as much as they can? No one ever got rich by themselves and the response you’re seeing is a response to frustration.” When I reiterated Steve Moore’s belief that Obama’s political regime is to blame he responded by saying, “That’s nonsense. Blaming Obama is like blaming the doctor for the diagnosis.”
The feeling of aggravation of an unjust economic situation is clouding the West and we risk falling victim to this too. It was recently reported by Aidan Radnedge of the London Metro that Britain looses £18billion a year due to its richest companies hiding financial assets overseas. Whichever way you may be persuaded it’s evident that the financial crisis is reaching the point of needing a solution rather than remaining a situation of tolerance.
Words by Shairah Habib & Pics. by Stuart Gold