Zuccotti #OWS protesters voted to spend $3,000 from $150,000 fund of donations on power washers, gardening supplies, pro sanitation workers. (Tweet by @newyorkdailynews)
CHICAGO, October 14, 2011- The Occupy Wall Street masses have taken over New York’s Zuccotti park, formerly Liberty Park, that, while donated for the use of the City residents, is operated and financially managed by Brookfield Office Properties.
In the public use agreement Brookfield retains the right to control how the park is used, and the cost of it’s upkeep. Following 9/11, Brookfield spent eight-million dollars to repair and upgrade the park. It is cleaned, inspected, and maintained, including nightly maintenance, by Brookfield personnel.
That is until Occupy Wall Street moved in.
After nearly a month of protesting, Brookfield was supposed to clean and inspect the park today. They simply wanted to maintain their investment. Brookfield stated the protesters could return, but without the vestments of their encampment - the tents, and tarps and food preparation stations destroying the grass and generally making a mess.
But we have to remember, grass will grow back, sanitation issues are solved with port-a-potties and hand-sanitizer, city garbage trucks can collect trash and people are resourceful and they will ensure they have what they need - from generators to charge cell phones and computers to medical aid stations for the bumps and bruises.
When protesters were told they had to temporarily leave the park they refused, threatening a confrontation and forcing Brookfield to back down. According to the New York Times, Brookfield received a flurry of calls from elected officials leading to the change of heart.
Emboldened by the news that they would not be forced to vacate the park, some OWS protesters took to the Financial District’s streets, mostly peacefully marching toward City Hall, however in some cases, things eroded leading to the arrest of people after verbal and physical altercations with the NYC Police ensued.
Every argument has a counter argument, however, and at this point, one must question how much damage to public and personal property in NYC, Washington, Chicago, Seattle, Philadelphia and the other cities the OWS protests have been organized will be allowed. And then one must ask who will pay for the repair?
My guess is that in the end will be the tax payers. But then we, the taxpayers, pay for the sanitation, garbage collection, police protection and all those things that are concerning those in charge for every “Taste of..”, Jazz Festival, holiday parade or Arts in the Park event that takes place across America, whether we attend or not.
And the message of the OWS protests is important. Whether we are in the park, camping out, or working and paying for the cleanup via our taxes, aren’t we all just a little tired of it being so hard to find a job, have a savings account or pay the mortgage as our jobs are sent overseas and big banks and big business continue along the status quo?
Isn’t it time for a change?
What do you think?
If you wish to respond to this opinion, please email editor Jacquie Kubin, putting Guest Contribution in your subject line and including your name, address, verifiable email and phone number. Anonymous submissions will not be considred.
Not all submissions will be posted, but they will be read. The Communities retain the right to not post your article/opinion for any reason, edit for content or length any article/opinion submitted and by submitting your article/opinion you agree to the final determination of The Communities at WashingtonTimes.com.
This article is the copyrighted property of the writer and Communities @ WashingtonTimes.com. Written permission must be obtained before reprint in online or print media. REPRINTING TWTC CONTENT WITHOUT PERMISSION AND/OR PAYMENT IS THEFT AND PUNISHABLE BY LAW.