If you’ve been downtown recently you will find yourself in the midst of a city of tents with a growing population of people participating in the nationwide, Occupy Wall Street movement.
After seeing the tent city for myself, and hearing what a group of the protestors had to say to visiting Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, I left wondering what exactly is the point of Occupy Wall Street, or in this case, Occupy Tucson?
While Arpaio draws controversy, and seemed to enjoy arguing, or agitating, the group of protestors, I stood there wondering what exactly they were mad it? Did Arpaio cause the problems on Wall Street? Aren’t the nation’s economic problems what the so-called 99 percent are taking on the homeless image for?
Were they mad at Arpaio because he caused it? Did Arpaio get away from his Wyatt Earp approach to law enforcement in order to cause a recession?
After doing some checking, I found one statement that says the protests are against social and economic inequality, high unemployment, greed, as well as corruption, and the undue influence of corporations – particularly those in the financial services sector.
Well, Tucson is a long way from Wall Street, and with such a broad range of issues to be mad at, it shows these dedicated protestors can stay in those tents forever, despite the mounting number of citations and high number of America’s population questioning if they are sending any kind of productive message whatsoever.
I’m all for freedom of speech, believe me, I disagree with plenty of things people have to say in today’s world, but I usually respect it. However, Occupy Tucson, Occupy Wall Street, or Occupy (insert city, town or county here) just doesn’t make any sense.
While Arpaio draws plenty of accusations with his approach to enforcing the law, I really got the feeling from the Occupy Tucson group that they were just bored, and wanted something or someone to do their “mic check,” routine on. Also, they loved the idea of having an audience, which was primarily just a small group of media there to watch.
Outside these tents, what appears to be a clothesline also has signs and messages pinned up. One of those was a piece of a cardboard box that said “Rosa Parks.” I’m sorry, but she stood up for her right to sit on a bus, and is an American icon. Your message, or reason for protesting, pales in comparison.
After returning from Arpaio’s press conference, I logged into Facebook, and quickly found Occupy Tucson is connected.
Of course the Facebook page was more dedicated to asking people for handouts than they were really explaining what they are fighting against here in Tucson.
They asked for kitchen items such as forks and spoons, they asked for washcloths, and so many other items that you use at home.
So, here is a suggestion, do the senseless protesting during the day or on weekends, and go home at night. Stop making our town look like we have a homeless problem. The actual homeless people worry us enough.
One of the protestors looked so bad I felt like giving them a hand out, or directing them to a nearby shelter.
Most of America is upset about the economy, most of America is upset that many of these banks still gave bonuses to the CEOs who caused the recession, and many of us are tired of the seemingly endless recession tunnel we appear to be in.
However, many of us still do our talking, or protesting if you will, the old fashion way. We get off our butts, we go to the polls and we vote. They aren’t all winners, but that’s what the next election is for.
Changes don’t happen from a message from a dirty person inside a tent, they come from voting, being good citizens and making a difference.