As with so many things in America that may start out in a peaceful manner, it seems that eventually it is ruined by immoral thugs that care more about creating havoc than the groups cause. In the case of the Occupy movement, crime and violence is making more headlines than the initial cause.
In San Francisco, a female Occupier came out of a crowd and cut a police officer’s hand while he was trying to keep Occupiers out of a busy intersections used by trains as well as cars. The officer was looking out for the safety of the protesters and is repaid with being assaulted.
Another police officer at the same location had an Occupier come out of the crowd, grab the officer’s radio and took off running. When the officer gave chase, someone else from the Occupy group shoved the officer to the ground, tore his uniform and cut his face.
In Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love, a female protester was raped in her tent by a male protester that had come from another state to join the protest.
Occupy protesters in Oakland broke into vacant warehouses, busted windows of downtown businesses, wrote graffiti on business fronts and set numerous fires.
Theft, assault, harassment of business owners and rape have been reported in many of the Occupy camps around the country. In New York the number of incidences is approaching 200.
In many cities that have been infested with the Occupy plague, business owners near the encampments have seen a drastic drop in business. In New York, businesses surrounding Zuccotti Park have lost nearly half a million dollars. One restaurant owner said that his customers use to by their lunch to eat in the park, but since the park was taken over, those customers have quit coming.
I’m all for protecting someone’s right to protest peacefully. It’s a right granted by the First Amendment which says,
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Note that it specifies peaceably assemble. When the Occupy groups turn to violence and crime, they are in violation of the First Amendment and have given up their right to gather and protest. That’s when it’s time for the proper authorities to move in and disband the mob. Those that refuse to leave should be arrested. The camps need to be removed and cleaned up and allow the local business owners to exercise their right to earn an honest living.