Thousands Rally to Defend Occupy Movement

Occupy Boston crowd on Atlantic Ave

They came by bus from New York and DC. They carpooled from Providence and flew in from Chicago. They drove from Worcester, New Hampshire, Vermont and Maine. Last night, demonstrating how clearly Occupy Boston’s message has been heard and understood, two thousand people traveled from near and far to defend Dewey Square. They painted signs and spoke in General Assembly. They chanted and sang, “Which Side Are You On?” six times, at least, as a brass brand blew steam into the frozen December night. They rallied at midnight, making circles two deep around tents, as the Veterans for Peace stood guard, white flags snapping in the wind. They dressed as bankers so that bankers might be arrested for once. And when the news came that no raid was coming, no eviction imminent, they danced in the streets to celebrate.

The longest continuous occupation in America continues.

Two weeks ago, a federal judge blocked a settlement between the Securities and Exchange Commission and Citigroup, saying that he could not be sure that it was “fair, adequate, or in the public interest.” Last week, on the same day that Occupy Boston appeared in court, the District Attorney announced she was suing the banks for fraudulent foreclosure practices. Commentators across the political spectrum are thinking anew about unemployment and pensions. A blocked settlement, a lawsuit, a renewed conversation – these are not our goals, but it is not too much to call them symptoms of our success, surface indications of a fundamental change we are building. We are not surprised. We have learned over the past ten weeks just how powerful the people can be. We have come together across vast differences of experience, brought face to face by the belief that our collective capacity is greater than has been shown, that democracy is not exhausted by stale puppetry sponsored by finance, and that we can do better. And now, last night only most recently, we are united by the concrete knowledge that not only can we do better, we are. We are winning.

The banks and their enablers in government present no serious claim on reason or right. Theirs is an entrenched interest secured by ill-gotten influence. One can certainly defend banking, but no one can defend these banks. This is why we march by day but they come for us by night. Why they arrest the press while we would seek it. Why it is, most importantly, that we grow stronger while they weaken. Threatened with eviction, we are beset by allies and friends. Unproductive wealth struggles to justify its inefficiency, and deceit grows helpless before a truth that has found its people. All across the world, the occupy movement has started a conversation about what is right and what is wrong about our economic systems and our governments. We hope you’ll join us throughout the day and then tonight for GA as we continue to converse together and speak out in Dewey Square.