It started off in mid-September as a protest that lacked a cohesive message. The motley crowd camping in the maze of narrow streets that make up Lower Manhattan beckoned passersby, urging them to add their voice to a smorgasbord of diverse causes. At times the scene has resembled a carnival acted out to rhythmic drumbeats interspersed with battle cries about the “revolution” against Wall Street, a symbolic totem pole of the rich.
Weeks since they took their anger to the streets of New York, the protesters are drawing parallels with the Arab Spring. No one expects these protests to bring about a regime change in Washington, but the “Occupy Wall Street” protests have clearly ignited a firestorm of rage across the US. That anger is fuelled by a frustration over government bailouts for banks even as the Average Joe helplessly watches his job disappear. Protests have spread from New York to Boston, Los Angeles and Chicago. At the time of writing, plans were afoot for a demonstration in the shadow of the US Congress building in Washington DC.