Thursday, November 17, 2011

Occupy Wall Street Student Rally At Union Square Park

Ows Occupy Colleges Student Protest

Student Strike. As it has been since the 19th century, Union Square Park's historic pavilion located on the northern end of the park was once again the backdrop for social protest movement. Occupy Wall Street visited the park again on Thursday afternoon where thousands gathered.

The Union Square Partnership (BID) is pushing for a restaurant to be built in the pavilion which would severely limit the historical use of the pavilion for these purposes. (Photo: Via gothamist)


"The first wave of marchers arrived right around 2:55 p.m. from the corner of Union Square East and 14th Street," wrote Samantha Kimmey on Faster Times.

" They marched up the square and eventually met another wave coming from the west side. The chants will be familiar to anyone who has been following the Occupy coverage: “Banks got bailed out, we got sold out!” and “Show me what democracy looks like, this is what democracy looks like!” were chanted in unison by the crowd, sometimes fading slightly before being chanted again even more emphatically.

At the top of Union Square, one of the organizers started out by calling out various universities and colleges in the city and asking the crowd to shout for their school. NYU got the loudest response, various other institutions seemed to have a respectable presence, and apparently Union Square was a bit too far from Morningside Heights for anyone from Columbia to make it.

Students, both undergraduate and graduate, took to the people’s mic and shared their stories. The speakers came from Cooper Union, the New School, CUNY, NYU, Brooklyn College and Julliard. One of the most powerful aspects of the whole gathering, in my mind, was that the people’s mic required everyone in the crowd to repeat the speakers words, which always seemed to start with an identification: “My name is Ben,” “My name is Bobby,” “My name is Emma” – which, when you hear echoed five times, reinforces the collective ideal behind the entire 99% project.

More than a thousand students from universities across the city mobilized mid-afternoon Thursday at the north end of Union Square. This was part of a national day of ‘solidarity’ and action in support of the Occupy Wall Street movement that saw its symbolic residence at Zuccotti Park removed by a surprise NYPD raid on Tuesday. (Photo: Harry Lee)

The park's historic pavilion once again played an important role. (Photo: Harry Lee)

Pavilion backdrop.

A large crowd has amassed at Union Square for today's Occupy Wall Street demonstration, and celebrities walk among them! Well, one anyway. Gawker points us to this photo of Dark Knight Rises star Anne Hathaway, holding a sign and looking mad. (And cute!) What does her sign say? Blackboards Not Bullets. (On the back is Never Trust Millionaires—especially Italian ones.)

The group of demonstrators, which includes college students who walked out of class today, plan to march down to Foley Square for a rally. Other protesters are taking their message to the subways in an attempt to persuade commuters to join them at Foley Square.

Union Square Park north. Thousands of people gathered in the City's most historical location for social protest. By nightfall thousands of people including union members and community activists moved further south and began filling up another Parks Department property, Foley Square, in a solidarity rally.

Read More:

Faster Times - November 18, 2011 - By Samantha Kimm

NYU Local - November 18, 2011 - By Harry Lee

Huffington Post - November 17, 2011 - By Amanda M. Fairbanks

gothamist - November 17, 2011 - By John Del Signore and James Thilman

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