We are the 99%
By David Glenn Cox
Time has become a blur to me here; can it have only been seventy two hours? I’m tired and I’m eating only junk and I need a new set a feet. Day three has been filled with protest, the reason why we all came here. No more do we just sit in the plaza and wait for the world, today the world began waiting for us.
So much is going on here that it is hard to become affiliated with it all. I was in the streets marching to K Street when I heard about the pepper spraying of protestors at the National Air and Space Museum. I was marching on my way to the White House when Ralph Nader spoke to the crowd in the plaza.
It illustrates a clear point in the occupation; there is no clear or defined leadership structure that will be followed in this process. The first march in which I participated was organized by labor groups and the second was organized by Veterans for Peace. As we marched, we chanted; “We are the 99%, we are the 99%, we are the 99% and so are You!” The tourists snapped their curious photographs, as the tour buses slowed down to allow their passengers to watch.
We marched through the city canyons of concrete columns, bureaucracy and statues of long forgotten dead generals. As we marched the car horns sounded in support and people on the sidewalk gave us the thumbs up sign. “Occupy Wall Street, occupy K Street, occupy everything and never give it back!”
Only occasionally would I see on the sidewalk a face of the perturbed and bothered. Lost souls drinking coffee in the ward room of the Titanic, practicing their religion of conventional wisdom in the temple of Horatio Alger and certain that they would never be forced to swim for it. From their first-class superstructures we are divided in twain, those who believe that society still works and protects them and those who march in the streets.
I am so hoarse that even for a guy who talks too much, I am talked out. I walked back to Freedom Plaza from K Street with a guy named Hayden who had skipped high school to participate in the occupation. “I think you’ll learn more here today than you would in school anyway,” I advised.
He asked, “How can I go to college next year and pile up twenty or thirty thousand dollars in school loan debt without knowing if there will be a job for me?”
That is what I have learned here, about sore feet and raw stories, people in trouble and struggling to hold on, abandoned by their government but rescued by each other. We chanted as we marched, “This is what…democracy looks like! This is what…democracy looks like!”
“Wall Street got bailed out, we got sold out!”
“How do we fix the deficit? End the war, end the occupation, tax the rich!”
So I will begin again today, the mainstream media will tell you that we have no common goals but they are so wrong. In Freedom Plaza today are Democrats and Republicans, Socialists, Communists and Libertarians. Americans all and we want these wars to end. We want the era of fear based political terrorism and corporate Fascism to end.
We are Americans and I never felt more American in my life than when I stepped off the curb and marched through the streets of its Capitol. We are all ages, races and all political persuasions, we are thousands in the streets and millions in spirit and we are all one.
David Glenn Cox is a senior staff writer for The Leftist Review. He is currently in Washington D.C. taking part in the protest in Freedom Plaza