Occupy Wall Street is Back—What Happens Next?

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Occupy Wall Street is Back—What Happens Next? Occupy Wall Street is Back—What Happens Next?

Occupy Wall Street is Back—What Happens Next?

by Nona Willis Aronowitz

May 6, 2012

Immortal Technique, one of the acts that performed at New York City's Union Square yesterday as part of the May Day protests, had some choice words about the comeback of the 99 percent: "When people say we're back, we say we never left."

This was genuinely a comeback. Unfortunately, the message was more muddled than ever. Now we had Trayvon Martin, the memory of last season's police brutality, immigration and the imminence of the election added to the tally of issues. Yesterday's festivities also had that uncomfortable tinge of class privilege the movement has always been plagued with—the people there were the ones who could afford to ditch work and school. (To their credit, some performers gave pointed shoutouts to the people who weren't able to play hooky.) Perhaps that's why it had such a college-y, Coachella feel, and why the crowd swelled and got more diverse when the clock struck five. But during the day, I felt just as indignant as I did when I first witnessed the around-the-clock activism of Zuccotti Park. Because of this, there wasn't much urgency. It felt like a day to cheer and march and get mildly angry.

Photos by Sadye Vassil
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