Snark: to annoy or irritate

"Snark" has been in English language dictionaries since at least 1906, and Lewis Carroll used the word to describe a mythological animal in his poem, The Hunting of the Snark (1874). Most recently, the word has come to characterize snappish, sarcastic, or mean-spirited comments or actions directed at those who annoy or irritate us.

At first, this blog was just going be a place to gripe, but because it's more satisfying to take action than it is to merely complain, now most of the posts/reposts suggest ways to get involved in solving problems.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Why Not Jail Wall Street Corporatists?

A message from CREDO Action:Take action!
Despite clear evidence of fraud, not a single banker has gone to jail for crimes that led to the financial meltdown.1 But over 1,000 protesters have been arrested in the inspiring Occupy Wall Street protest in New York City.
Thousands marched in New York City and across the country Wednesday in solidarity with Occupy Wall Street. But we must ensure that now the October 5 marches are over, the police do not resume their campaign of violence and intimidation aimed at breaking up the Wall Street protests just as they begin to gain traction and build momentum.
The very existence of Occupy Wall Street could be endangered by strongarm NYPD tactics aimed at intimidating protesters and ending their three-week stand against the big Wall Street banks.
At 8pm last night, the nightsticks came out once again and a high-ranking police "white shirt" was caught on video using his baton to beat protesters. A local television news crew that was caught up in the violence was both beaten and pepper sprayed. And a police officer was caught on video saying he hoped his nightstick would get a "workout."2
Many of the rank and file "blue shirts" of the NYPD have shown great poise, respect, and even moments of solidarity with the protesters. After all, they are members of the 99 percent of Americans who have been victimized by Wall Street.
However, NYPD leadership has used brutal techniques to break up the protests. In an incident last week, a police officer attacked nonviolent protesters with pepper spray. There are multiple videos of the attack on four women protesters who did nothing to provoke the officer's action. The New York Times reported that the officer in question "looked as if he were spraying cockroaches."3
The officer involved in that attack was not a rank and file cop. He was a deputy inspector with supervisory responsibilities for the police action. What's more, he has a history of violating the civil rights of protesters and is currently facing legal action for accusations of wrongful arrest and civil rights violations at the 2004 Republican National Convention demonstrations.4
There have been other incidents of police abuse. But documented attacks on protesters by high-ranking NYPD officers demonstrate that these incidents aren't simply the collateral damage of a tense and confusing situation. The police are roughing up protesters in an attempt to break up the Occupy Wall Street protest.
We have heard from our friends on the ground that the most important thing people can do who cannot come down and support the protests in person is to ensure that the Mayor and the Police Commissioner do not drive them out of the park which is serving as the base for Occupy Wall Street protests.
It's important that the Mayor and Police Commissioner know that the eyes of people across the country are on them, and that we consider it an attack on democracy and not just an individual protester when the NYPD systematically uses intimidation and violence with the intent of suppressing the ongoing protests.
Becky Bond, Political Director
CREDO Action from Working Assets
1. "Why Isn't Wall Street in Jail?," Matt Taibbi, Rolling Stone, 2-16-2011.
2. "Video: NYPD White Shirt Uses Baton To Beat Occupy Wall Street Protesters," Gothamist, 10-5-2011.
3. "A Spray Like a Punch in the Face," Jim Dwyer, The New York Times, 09-27-2011.
4. "NYPD Pepper-Sprayer Hit Fellow Officer With Friendly Fire, Has Prior Protest Complaint,"Joe Coscarelli, New York Magazine, 05-12-2011

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