Occupy Wall Street Winds Down
“Many of the early participants in the large assemblies in New York last summer, which organized to Occupy Wall Street on Sept. 17, never wanted to build a movement per se,” Salon’s Natasha Lennard wrote recently. “‘Occupy’ was a tactic, a banner under which to create public spaces and forums and to intervene in the assumption that politics is just about voting or supporting candidates or campaigns.”
She added, “Personally, I’d love to say goodbye to the banner of ‘Occupy.’ “
Those are noteworthy remarks coming from Lennard, who was hired to be Salon’s Occupy Wall Street correspondent in a nod to the movement’s pervasive influence not only in leftist American politics but also within the political discussion in general.
Over the past year, polls have recorded an increase in public awareness about the growing gap between rich and poor and the popularization of Occupy terms such as “the 1%.”
But the numbers also show a measurable decrease in interest in the Occupy movement since October, when socialists found themselves rubbing up against anarchists on one shoulder and liberals disappointed with President Obama on the other.
In the fall, when the movement was arguably at its height before police shut down the encampment at Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan, Twitter users referenced the movement 20 to 60 times a minute; now, Occupy sees about five references per minute, according to Reuters.