On the tenth anniversary of the war in Afghanistan, thousands united at Freedom Plaza in Washington DC today, demanding that politicians take notice.
Organizer David Swanson said, “Our demands are tax the billionaires, tax the corporations and stop dumping discretionary spending into the war machine.”
Those demands are echoed in the hundreds of protesters that came from throughout the nation today – and some have very personal reasons for demonstrating.
“My son is about to be deployed for the fifth time," Pat Albizo told RT America. "We're just so sick and tired of this war, those of us that have loved ones in the military,” added Albizo.
Another demonstrator dressed as a “master hero” says he represents millions of young graduates, now jobless and shackled by college debt.
“The youngest generation of our brightest, youngest most passionate minds is facing a lifetime of indentured servitude,” he said.
From all corners of America, those embodying the message of the Occupy Wall Street movement are joining with the October 2011 cause to show their unrest with the corruption plaguing so many sectors of the American way of life. From ongoing wars to crime and corruption among the American elite, it's easy for these demonstrators to find faults with the current system.
Make-shift cardboard shelters peppering the park in DC symbolize the countless homes foreclosed during the economic downturn. Throughout DC, demonstrators begin their protests by starting an occupation today in skid-row style shacks and camping tents.
“This is to represent the millions and millions of homeowners around the United States who are now homeless,” said protestor Christina Mckenna.
Those that gathered today in DC say their message is clear: stop reckless spending on wars abroad and stop corporate corruption. That corruption, they say, profits at the expense of 99 percent of the population.And these protests, they add, will continue until their demands are met.
With the Occupy Wall Street protests sweeping across the nation, this demonstration in Washington DC could help to make their voices louder and clearer.
Protesters say this is just the beginning, and they plan to occupy DC indefinitely or until they see some real change.