You know, come to think of it, it has been a while since we thought to ourselves, “Wow, those Occupy kids are kind of crazy.” And not like, Zombie March crazy, or even over-zealous hippie crazy. We’re talking full-on “proving The New York Post right about the mentally ill overtaking Zuccotti Park” kind of crazy.
Maybe it’s because, almost one year after OWS became a media sensation, the news cycle has moved on to bigger stories, like the upcoming presidential election, or how sad Robert Pattinson is feeling today. But just because they aren’t as visible doesn’t mean that members of Occupy have disappeared, or given up the fight and gone home to their parents’ houses to try to look for a job. A small(er) but vocal minority are still out there, railing against perceived injustices by the establishment against the 99 percent, in any form that might take. Like, say, the American Psychiatric Association.
Occupy Wall Street
You can still see traces of the Occupy Wall Street encampment that once stood in Zuccotti Park—a contingent of police officers by the plaza’s entrance and an NYPD watchtower standing guard on Zuccotti’s
northern edge. However, the protesters who made this park their home before being evicted by the police last November are largely gone and the news trucks that formerly stationed themselves outside have departed in favor of a Chabad Mitzvah Tank.
On a recent afternoon at Zuccotti, The Observer encountered handful of tourists and businessmen on lunch breaks but there was nary a demonstrator in sight. At nearby Federal Hall, there were about 11 Occupiers holding signs and sitting on the steps. On the street below, workers were seemingly oblivious to the Occupiers in their midst.
“You’re a Republican?” a suited man asked his friend as they briskly passed by. “Good man!”
Seven months into the movement, the Wall Street that protesters are ostensibly trying to occupy has become inured to the spectacle of carnivalesque protests, demonstrators sleeping on sidewalks and mass arrests. And it seems the rest of the city has too. The protesters are in danger of becoming just another discordant note in the daily din that New Yorkers are so adept at tuning out, like panhandlers, street performers, sidewalk preachers and the other distractions of urban life.