Occupy Wall Street – faces of the revolution
To shed more truth on the real people behind the movement, RT found out the personal stories of the protesters.
They have been accused of not having a unified message, but maybe because they are drawn from all walks of life, brought together by anger and frustration at the direction of their country. Day or night, rain or shine, it’s the personal stories of these protesters that have kept them out on the streets, three weeks into the demonstrations. The deeper into the occupation, the deeper the wounds.
Leonard Tekaat came all the way from California, leaving behind a 97-year-old mother. The retired home financing specialist worries about the future generation.
“I am sad because of all the misery that’s been created from a policy that I’ve been trying to change for 40 years. It’s just ridiculous how they destroyed the lower-class people. It isn’t necessary. I have enough money to survive my lifetime, so I don’t have a problem, but it’s my great grandkids, my grandkids. They can’t make it. It’s just too hard for them to make it,” said the 67 year old.
These protesters have largely been presented by the media as hippy anarchist teens. But one marching 89-year-old retired teacher would beg to differ.
“Wall Street? Oh my god! What they do to the American people, to our system! Completely corrupt! Completely responsible for the mess, the recession that we have,” said Dominick Zollo.
Video art student Leia MonDragon is here with her 3-year-old daughter Uma.
“I want to bring my daughter because I want her to get an idea of what it is to be politically active,” said Leia.
She says protesters issues with the system may differ, but if you’re fed up – this is where you need to be.
“Their issues all come down to one thing in the end. When the wealth is concentrated into the hands of a few, it’s very difficult to get any new laws passed for any kind of issue that is in the interest of the 99 percent, that’s just the economic reality,” explained the woman.
Pennsylvania couple Dawn and Mathias add some rose pedals to their outdoor beds to stay cosy, topped off by an American flag.
“I left my home, I left my job,” said Mathias.
“I left my family, I left my job, because I think this is a very, very important cause, this is a true revolution that’s going on, and I need to be a part of it. I have a lot to offer,” said Dawn.
It’s not just passion, but knowledge that’s led them to protest. The couple’s friend Anna spends her time researching the global and American financial system. She drove 20 hours to get to Wall Street from Iowa.
“It’s a bottomless hole, that there is so much corruption. To quote a famous film, 'We’re mad as hell, and we’re not going to take it anymore,'" said the filmmaker.
Anna found out about the protests a week into the action. “At that moment it dawned on me that mass media is not covering it at all,” she said.
Two weeks later, the media has paid some attention, but as the demonstrators are presented as young slackers, those who are ready for real change are growing more diverse by the day.