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Occupy Wall Street – Police Brutality, Arrests, MSM blackout

Published time: September 26, 2011 21:22
Edited time: October 03, 2011 12:00

Spencer Platt / Getty Images / AFP

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As Occupy Wall Street demonstrations enter their second week, over 80 people were arrested over the weekend and police brutality surges on the streets.

­Many protesters say the mainstream media is undergoing a black-out since many corporate networks sleep in the same bed with Wall Street. RT's Anastasia Churkina reports.

Police brutality is running wild in New York – Americans dragged, punched and pepper sprayed.

“Women on the ground, screaming, crying, after getting assaulted brutally by police? Disgusting,” said blogger Alexander Higgins.

Over 80 people were arrested over the weekend at peaceful anti-Wall Street protests.

Among them is Eric – beaten up and held for 36 hours. The deep scars on his hands speak for themselves. The activist is shocked by the price Americans are paying for speaking out about injustice.

“The police response has been overly violent and brutal. They maced five women. They collected them in a net and then maced them. They weren’t even warned. The captain who maced them then ran away to avoid being filmed on camera,” said Eric to RT.

The Occupy Wall Street movement was launched to kick start America’s own Arab Spring.

“This is a historical moment. This is the beginning of the people’s revolution. This government is not working for the best interest of its people or this nation,” said protester Faith Laugier.

For now Occupy Wall Street remains a fringe movement with the anticipated 20,000 people yet to gather.

“It would be nice if it grew into something like what happened in Egypt. But that might be wishful thinking, because the people here are completely brainwashed,” said protester Juan Hernandez.

It took America’s mainstream media a week to catch up with the demonstrations. Protesters say some networks deny them coverage.

“CNN and FOX I am really disappointed in. Yesterday, the police responded with huge police brutality, and we were calling them constantly and they shut down their headquarters. And when we would mention Occupy Wall Street, they’d hung up on us," said organizer Lucas Vazquez.

Others say the outlets that are covering the Occupy Wall Street rallies, are not doing nearly enough.

“Whispers. A couple of things. People don’t want people to know what’s going on. Are you kidding? There’s been coverage, but it’s like “oh, bunch of people. Done. One article,” said one demonstrator.

Alternative news sources are the ones spreading the word far and wide.

“It’s actually expected that the mainstream media would not cover this type of movement. Why would they? They actually benefit from the system staying the way it is. I am not surprised there has been a complete blackout from the media,” said another protester.

Twitter and other social networking websites are bringing people out, as three years into a recession, Wall Street has still not been held accountable for  triggering  the common American’s worst nightmare.

“Wall Street has ripped off the American people to no end. Mortgage fraud, foreclosure, income disparity throughout this country is just off the hook. The main reason I am here is the corporate media blackout. The mainstream media blackout. You’re only getting news from alternative news sites,” said blogger Alexander Higgins.

One in six Americans are living below the poverty line.

“Unemployment is the highest it has been in a generation. People just can’t get a job. We have to send a message. A message that we are paying attention and we want things to change, we want the system to change,” was a common feeling voiced by one New Yorker.

But the system is far from ready to change – it is yet to start taking people’s outrage seriously.

While demonstrators marched the streets of the Financial District, bankers shamelessly toasted life with champagne right in their faces.

The US political and corporate elite embraces uprisings when they are far from American soil. But when similar events take place at home, the attitude of bankers, politicians, largely the media – and many Americans – is to turn a blind eye. While the Financial District erupts with brutality and outrage, the rest of New York goes about its business as usual.



"I think what we see right now is the embryo of a very broad fightback movement that may have the potential to grow into something larger," said activist and rapper Marcel Cartier to RT. "I hope it's the beginning of a revolution movement." Cartier added that he believes his fellow New Yorkers are definitely frustrated with the banks' mismanagement and said that those waging against war on Wall Street are much more powerful than the mainstream media makes them out to be.

"The greatest ammo to the ruling class," said Cartier, "is the fact that the masses of people don't yet realize that we are the driving force of this society."

"We can shut it down in a second,"

said Cartier.

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