OWS Releases Footage of 'Peaceful' Protest That is Anything But [Video]

owspeaceful OWS Releases Footage of 'Peaceful' Protest That is Anything But [Video]

A "peaceful" protest?

With the weather getting colder and news outlets packing up and moving on to different stories, it’s now up to Occupy Wall Street’s own media team to start sending out videos of their violent arrests. But can we trust what we’re seeing?

As we mentioned earlier, last night saw at least 10 protesters arrested in their march towards Union Square, where they were met by police in riot gear and orange netting. This video was sent around this morning by Vlad Teichberg, a member of General Assembly/OWS’ media team, with the subject line “Graphic Footage of NYPD police attacking #occupywallst protestors solidarity march.”

We’ve discussed OWS’s image problem before, but the release of this video just about sums is up. In it, the protesters don’t seem peaceful at all: after one of their members is forced to the ground and arrested (around the 4:10 mark) you can see a young man in a hoodie screaming directly into a police officer’s face, “Who do you serve? Who do you protect?” while the N.Y.P.D. does its best to ignore him.

 

The video has also been highly edited to slow down the portions where the cops attack a protester, but remain at normal speed (and in fact focuses the lens away from) the moments where irate crowd members actually push police officers who are trying to force them back on the sidewalk. According to other outlets, the protesters weren’t just screaming slogans either: ABC news reports the “goading” calls of people screaming “No justice, dirty pigs, cops come here,” possibly in an attempt to get arrested themselves. They also pushed through the orange netting and cut through the ropes the police had set up to barricade protesters from the street.

If anything, the video works against OWS: if it was supposed to garner any sympathy towards the cause and bring awareness to the violence in Oakland on Tuesday–when a police/protester clash lead to several people being severely injured (one of whom, Iraq war veteran and U.S. Marine Scott Olsen, recieved a fractured skull during the fray)–it failed on several levels. It’s highly edited and not “raw footage,” and thus makes itself as open to criticism as any Fox video. It also doesn’t make the protesters themselves look very good: instead of showing the police blindly attacking peaceful protesters, what we see here is an angry mob trying to push through a wall of cops in riot gear who, for the most part, refuse to take the bait.

Comments

  1. Witness says:

    I was walking home and witnessed the arrest that starts at about 1:00.  The crowd was, in fact, peaceful.  As best I could tell, the cops threw that kid down because he was crossing the street.  And as the video shows, they repeatedly beat him while he was restrained, facedown.

    Frankly, it was pretty appalling, and I’m surprised and impressed that the marchers remained as cool as they did.

    It sounds like you weren’t there.  But you’ve badly mischaracterized what I witnessed, so for me, this calls into question the credibility of your reporting.

    For what it’s worth, I was not part of the march, but happened to be on Mercer street when they came by.

  2. LP_oscar says:

    I Completely disagree with the argument from the writer, 

          “it failed on several levels. It’s highly edited and not “raw footage,” and thus
          makes itself as open to criticism as any Fox video. It also doesn’t make the 
          protesters themselves look very good: instead of showing the police blindly 
          attacking peaceful protesters, what we see here is an angry mob trying to push    
          through a wall of cops in riot gear who, for the most part, refuse to take the bait.”THIS is in fact raw footage, the dismissive remark on the use of slow motion to further focus on the acts of aggression committed by the NYPD does not dilute what one considers “raw” in this video. There are no sound bites, no commentary, and the video is for the most part Un-edited. (albeit I comprehend Mr. Grant’s misperception of what slow motion, in this situation, allows the viewer to see more clearly)And as far as the use of quotes taken from the situation, what would you prefer Mr. Grant docile restraint? He’s making this out to look like it had a Slipknot song juxtaposed to the video. No. Mr. Grant. No. 

  3. Justice Born says:

    The anger, frustration and taunting is the response to the police actions/presence.  I will agree that amongst the 99% are antagonists, anarchist and some that are out for drama.  These people do not represent the core of the movement, yet the actions of a few are being used to discredit the greater message.  The anger directed at the police is due to the fact that they are there to prevent the American People from assembling and protesting our currupted government.  How can our government spend trillions on spreading Democracy over seas…encouraging other nations to speak out against their government/leaders and turn around and attempt to silence the American people.  Any attempt to do so will lead to blood shed.  History has proven over and over that the will of the people will overcome any attempt to stop it.  “Liberty or Death” -there is nothing radical about fighting, getting arrested, beaten, tortured or killed for ones country.  The government/police are on the wrong side of history on this one.

  4. jhog says:

    Drew Grant??? The footage is slowed down so you CAN see the cops BEATING the protestor! Did you not see the cops pull him up by his jacket then drop him on his face??????? 

    Did you see any protestors fighting cops violently???? NO.

    What’s amazing is the restraint the protestors demonstrated despite the violence of the cops.

    Have you thought of moving to N. Korea where your political bent might be more accepted by the powers that be?

  5. Akiefer says:

    I think you’ve overreached in taking your audience to be a bunch of idiots, and proved yourself an idiot instead. Anyone who watches that video can see that the level of violence on the part of the cops is unjustified. If you disagree for ideological reasons, who cares.