Occupy Movement Meets Tallahassee

“The people united will never be defeated!” shouted the nearly 150 protestors.
The “Occupy Wall Street” movement made its way to the steps of the Old Capitol renaming itself “Occupy Tallahassee” this weekend. Tallahasseeans young and old were on the lawn protesting what they call corporate greed.
Occupy Tallahassee’s website said they want to take ” down the corporate beast.”
Richard Noble brought his wife to the Capitol to join the protests. Noble felt it was important drive the hour and a half from St. George Island to be part of this movement. It was time, he said, to join the fight instead of watching through a television “while drinking a beer.”
“Most of this isn’t going to change my life; it’s going to change your life,” said Noble. “I think it’s more of a stance to get recognition to the people who have robbed this country, and many of the middle class of their life savings.”
Even Tallahassee’s representative in the Florida House, Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda, joined the protesting. She got one of the protester’s loud speakers and started chanting with the people.
“We need to hear from you,” Rehwinkel Vasilinda said to the crowd. “You get the government you deserve.”
The crowd took a minute or so to realize who she was, but once they did, they formed a circle listening to her every word.
“When you’re out here working, and you’re out here telling us what you need and what you want, supporting us—the ones that you think are good for you, let us know!” she said. “And if you don’t like what we’re doing, let us know that too.”
Noble felt like one of the best ideas he heard all day was having politicians wear vests and jackets like NASCAR drivers.
“They ought to wear jackets with pins of whoever donated to them on there, so that way we all know who they’re really representing,” said Noble.
This was part of the group’s main message. The groups website said “political corruption has left us disenfranchised and unrepresented.”
The 99 percent represents just that, the bottom majority of American wealth.
“Corporate greed has struck deeply into our lives, ravaging our land,air and water, while destroying vital local and global economies,” said Occupy Tallahassee’s website. “So we are for people over profit, for democracy over plutocracy, for the bright future over the dark past and for every other great feeling of justice. With compassion in our hearts, we gather here today.”
According to the New York Times, in order to be part of the top 1 percent of wealth in America, a household must see $506,553 in cash income each year. Times writer Catherine Rampell said the income curve is especially steep at the high end, ” meaning that people just a few tenths of a percentile point above that make much, much more.”
“The 99 percent, that makes so much sense to me,” Rehwinkel Vasilinda told TV20. “This is the rest of the country that hasn’t been served. I’ve been waiting to see something like this, so I wanted to be out here to be part of it.”
Protestors brought mostly homemade signs, one of which read “To Wall Street: Disorganized Protest beats organized crime.”
Some signs were seemingly distributed by a mass group because so many had the same sign. One said “We are the 99 percent; we are too big to fail.”
Another referenced the 1976 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer movie, Network, which famously coined the phrase, “I’m mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!”


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