Occupy Wall Street once again took to the streets of downtown Manhattan to celebrate the
first year anniversary of addressing the financial and social problems wrought in recent
times by certain banks and institutions riding the wild west all the way to their holes in
The people who gathered in huge numbers are the public faces of what many write off as a
movement without leadership, strategy or structure. And with all the rabble rousing,
what has it achieved?
We're still talking about it and somewhere, in the deep dark depths of OWS there are faces,
names, strategies, budgets, you name it.
The problems didn't happen overnight, solutions to such will not happen overnight.
The right to vote (men, women, blacks and whites), civil rights, women's rights, equal pay,
gay rights, religious freedom . . .
The right and duty to care. How hard does it have to be?
September 17th 2012 marks the first anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street Movement.
A variety of activities will take place in and around Wall St tomorrow.
I took these shots, a few the many, over the past twelve months. They are, with the exception
of the Syrian protesters, all centered in and around Zuccotti Park, aka Liberty Plaza, where all
sorts of people came together to protest, pray, sing, have a good time, rouse some rabble.
To arrest, be arrested and bailed out.
To fly flags of all colours.
To make friends, films and documentaries.
To make a change.
The only shots fired were those from cameras and all that burned were cigarettes and passions.
. . . . .
Are you confused by the recent Republican probing into women’s reproductive rights? I know I am. I am so confused I think sometimes I have bungee-jumped into a time warp where I am now back in the grim dark days of unwanted pregnancy, or fear of pregnancy. Nothing to do with me but everything to do with my mother.
Every Saturday afternoon, (a slight exaggeration but this is how it felt!) we would go to our local church for the ultimate mother daughter bonding experience – the sacrament of confession! My father and many brothers always managed to be elsewhere in the character building pursuit of sports while we engaged in the process of asking Father Parish to forgive our sins, a whole week’s worth! My sins “I was catty and unkind, I was disobedient and told fibs . . .” always merited a don’t do it again and say three Hail Mary’s which seemed fair enough to me. My mother however always seemed to be a little more troubled when she came out of the confessional. A woman with watery eyes at the best of times, which I later recognised as eyes of utter exhaustion, red rims framed her salty ponds. Her sin, I later learned, was in denying her husband his conjugal rights.
The love my mother and father had for each other was never in doubt, nor did we as children suffer the agonies of the unwanted. We were a Good Catholic Family, one amongst millions! And my parents contributed to the growing numbers. Forget the difficult pregnancies, the tortured labours and nervous breakdowns. We said rosaries, lit candles, said novenas and lived as best we could with a depressed mother thinking all the time how blessed and extra special we were because suffering was so up there on the cross with Christ and his beloved mother Mary!
In my fumblings of faith and confusion there was one fact about Jesus that stood out above all – he was an only child! Which wasn’t the Catholic way at all! Just ask GOP candidate Rick Santorum who waves his finger in a no, no, no about that C-Word . . . contraception!
Is this too much information? Or perhaps not enough? Links below for the curious!
This Saturday past, in recognition of International Women’s Day, a group gathered together to march from Union Square down to Liberty Plaza, aka Zuccotti Park.
Enough with the words, here are some photos – SOOC!
The march down Broadway . . .
The Pink Ladies on the March, something to see!
More observers . . .
Hmmm, love to know what these observers are thinking about the marchers coming towards them . . .
But hey, this is Soho, Saturday afternoon and the sun is shining and the crowds are out! What’s not to love!
We are family!
Thoughts in the air?
Welcome to Liberty Plaza / Zuccotti Park!
Miss Butterfly of Liberty Plaza!
This wonderful woman, with her smile and in her wheelchair, came in from Queens with sandwiches for the marchers . . .
Miss Butterfly with her summons – her wings obstructed the sidewalk, amongst other citations to do with skates etc
It was a rough day down in Zuccotti Park today, the roughest I have witnessed so far. For now, all I want to do is soak in a hot bath and hope my stiff neck settles.
It is indeed a thin line on the front line with riot police surging forward, protestors mounting a counter surge from behind, only a metal barricade separating me from the big arms of the police. (more…)
Police in riot gear raided Zuccotti park, site of the Occupy Wall St, in the early hours of this morning. They arrested over two hundred people, including a city councillor, in the successful effort to evict the public space of the protestors. Police took down the tents, seized sleeping bags, computer equipment and other personal goods along with the thoroughly catalogued library which is now stored in part at the sanitation department up on 56th St b/w 10th and 11th Sts.
Protestors returned to the site throughout the morning while riot police maintained a heavy presence both in the park which remained barricaded and off-limits to the public, and in the surrounding streets.
As of tonight camping in tents remains off bounds while the legal issue to do so remains in contest. The latest update comes from the East Village where several churches have opened their doors to provide protestors with overnight accommodation.
Opportunity . . . such a lovely open word, full of promise and possibility but so fleeting.
Here in New York the streets are full of opportunity and no more so than in the faces of the people who walk the streets. I say New York if only because it is where I happen to be at the moment, it could be any street, any face anywhere . . . but, the past month or so has seen the occupation of a space in New York, Zuccotti Park, and in this place people have come together from the various wherevers of home and place.
The soundtrack to this collection comes from the Drum Circle whereby an ever-changing cast beats the beat in an energetic rhythm of a tightly organised, tied to the tempo, improv combo of sound which somehow magically combines to become music.
For the woman in this photo, listening was not enough. She had to dance and dance she did. Beautifully, elegantly and with a style so obvious in her smile.
She took the opportunity to dance in the sunshine and, in doing so, she gave me the opportunity to capture her joy, pleasure and enthusiasm in being one person. Herself. Simple and lovely.
How possible is it for a crowd to change more than the traffic?
October 15, 2011, so many thousands marched to Times Square from the occupied Zuccotti Park in downtown New York. There are so many stories to be told from this day – the protestors, the police, the tourists, the shoppers, the observers. Everyone anywhere near the day’s events will have their own special take on what took place.
With the freedoms we enjoy and a voice inside every one of us surely we all have a wealth of possibility before us. Don’t we?
Here are some views from the late afternoon approach to Times Sq.
I was down at Zuccotti Park the other day, minding my own business as much as I can with my Canon camera when, turning to take a shot I came face to face, lens to lens, with a camera-man filming me. We laughed, he had a smile to die for, we made crowd small talk then he asked me if I minded being filmed and asked a few questions. This stopped me in my tracks. I am Miss Invisible, I am “what did you say your name was again . . . ?” I faffed around, made polite Greta Garbo excuses when he came up with the clincher that I could hardly object if I were so happy to be taking photographs of other people. Fair point, I thought, go ahead, confident that they will have the good enough taste to later press delete.
His partner, the interviewer, an elfin young girl who could have passed for a far prettier Justin Bieber look-a-like asked me what I was doing own there. I glibbed and cobbled together an answer of sorts with so much gibberish that I am mercifully unable to recall the messy few words that did fall from my mouth. I could see in her eyes that it was a wrap already but she was kind enough to smile and nod her head appropriately. It was over in no time. I made sure of that with my waffy talk of freedom and the democratic process.