I was in Austin this week for the inaugural SxSW Eco conference. Luckily, this happened to coincide with the first official day of the Occupy Austin demonstration. So after the closing presentation, I grabbed some friends and headed down to see what the occupation looked like.
As we rounded the corner from West 2nd Street, I heard the demonstration before I saw it. At the time it wasn’t the sound of chanting or angry speeches, it was something else. A joyful noise. Still, my friends and I spotted snipers monitoring the crowd from the rooftops of the banking and government buildings nearby. A silent reminder that the 1% are worried, and watching.
To see more of the faces, signs, and messages I found while at Occupy Austin, keep clicking.
A view of the crowd as we first approached Occupy Austin.
Demonstrating the corporate greed that keeps America at war and leads to the death of innocent men, women, and children around the world.
Many signs advocated “Fair Trade, Not Free Trade”
“Hundreds of thousands join Occupy Wall Street to stop it ‘drowning our children in national debt’ by ending wars of aggression” – October2011.org
Despite mainstream media’s best efforts to typecast Occupiers as communists, welfare moochers, idiots and†paid protesters, the people I saw were mothers, fathers, soldiers, students, disabled persons, teachers, artists, business people, and yes, Dr. Seuss fans.
One of the greatest signs of an inclusive movement. There are wealthy Americans who agree with the 99% and want to do their part to rebuild out country.
Occupy Wall Street isn’t about lynching business owners because they’re successful. It’s about taking the reins of political power away from profit-driven interests, and reinstating the people as the most important element of the political process.
Read more about the Occupy Wall Street Movement:
All images via Flickr – meadow03