Just days after stating that he’ll allow the Wall Street protesters to stay indefinitely, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced that the NYPD will come to Zuccotti Park to kick out the 99%.
“The bottom line is – people want to express themselves. And as long as they obey the laws, we’ll allow them to,” Bloomberg told the Wall Street Journal on Monday. “If they break the laws, then, we’re going to do what we’re supposed to do: enforce the laws.”
Bloomberg’s remarks seem gracious, but really, the permission wasn’t his to give.
According to Gothamist, Det. Rick Lee, a community affairs officer at lower Manhattan’s 1st Precinct, explained the situation to locals at Community Board 1′s Financial District Committee meeting. “A representative for Brookfield would go into the park and say, ‘You’re in violation of the rules of the park. You have to leave.’ If they don’t leave, they’re trespassing. Then the police would get involved.”
So, rather than respect the movement and the protester’s First Amendment rights, the park owners suddenly announced that they would need to vacate the park for cleaning by 7 am tomorrow or risk arrest. They also issued “new rules” to the Occupiers:
Although he’s hiding behind private owner “rules” about cleanliness, Bloomberg’s tactic is obvious and has been used to break up many protests in the past. The need to clean the park is nothing more than a ruse to get the protesters to leave permanently, because as the rules clearly state, Occupiers will only be allowed back in if they obey rules that include: no “lying down” and no use of “tarps or sleeping bags or other covering.
It’s essential that the public show it’s support for the Occupy Wall Street protesters and remind the City of New York that the 99% has a right to assemble in Zuchotti park. The rest of the world is watching, and if Occupiers are evicted, mayors of other cities will likely follow suit.
1. Call 311 and tell Bloomberg to support the right to assemble and to not interfere with #OWS. If you are calling from outside NY use this number 212-NEW-YORK.
2. If you can, go to the NYC #OWS on FRIDAY AT 6AM to defend the occupation from eviction.
3. Call Brookfield, the park’s owners and tell them to stop the eviction of Zuccotti Park:
Brookfield CEO Richard Clark: +1-212-417-7063
Brookfield US headquarters: +1-212-417-7000
4. Help Care2 gather as many signatures as possible on the petition below.