11 Things You Can Do to Help the 'Occupy Wall Street' Movement
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Editor's note: Today is the fifth day demonstrators have staged an "occupation" of Wall St. and other parts of lower Manhattan in protest of America's staggering economic inequality and the influence of big finance on our politics. As of Tuesday night, 16 people had been arrested. There are also reports that law enforcement has confiscated camera equipment. Below, writer Chaz Valenza describes 11 things you can do to help out the protesters.
These patriot occupiers are fighting for 99 percent of us. Those who are unemployed, uninsured, underemployed and totally insecure in the face of ever increasing social and financial inequities. They are standing up for those who cannot be there right now.
Here's the good news -- you can help, right now today -- no matter where you are.
1) Spread the word -- there's something going on. People have started a movement -- they're occupying Wall Street. Hundreds of people have been camped out in lower Manhattan for four days!
2) If you're in New York and can only spare a little time or money: bring American flags, cardboard, markers, water, etc. down to Liberty Park.
3) If you're in the New York area and have a day, a morning, an afternoon, go down there. The weather appears to be holding. Take the day off and just go. I know it sounds hard to believe but you will be heard. This is an open general assembly effort and you will get your say and be a real participant.
4) If you are a little ways from NYC, organize foursomes to go to NYC for the day. It will cost you the train/bus/car fare. Take nothing but some food and water and your body.
5) Too far to get to NYC? Sign this petition and I will read your name and comments in Liberty Park this week, I promise. Break Up Goldman Sachs Now!
6) Be subversive against the big money interests wherever you are and encourage others to do the same. Don't give the banksters 4 percent of every purchase you make with a credit or debit card -- use cash. See: UseCashMovement
7) Be subversive: max out your credit card on large ticket items and return them the next day. (This one is right out of the Saul Alinsky playbook.)
8) Move your money from a big bank to a credit union.
9) Picket a local branch of a bank. When the press asks you what the heck you think you're doing, tell them it's in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street.
10) Send food to the protesters in Liberty Park through a New York friend or go to the live stream chat for information on local eats that will take your order. (Yes, you'll have to use your credit card, big spender!)
11) Do you know anybody who knows anybody who knows a writer, a celebrity, etc. who will show their face at the protest? Get to them now.
Bonus Support Idea 12) Spread the word again, and repeat!
Chaz Valenza is a writer and small business owner in New Jersey.