As most everyone has heard by now, the NYPD conducted a raid on the protestors in Zuccotti Park late last night and early this morning. As the New York Times has reported it was “almost a military-style operation,” involving hundreds of police officers. Nearly 200 people were arrested.
This morning around 11 I headed to the triangle where Canal St., Sixth Ave., and Varick St. intersect, which had become the de facto home to the protestors (along with Foley Square) after they were removed in the middle of the night. In the morning, a temporary restraining order was granted on behalf of the protestors to allow them back into the park, but now it seems the lawyers for the protestors are appearing in a court hearing to determine the outcome.
I marched along with around 250 people from the triangle in Tribeca, east on Canal, and down to Broadway to Zuccotti Park. We stopped traffic on Broadway and were only pushed off the streets near Reade St. by dozens of police officers on foot and on motorbikes. We marched on the sidewalks until we reached Zuccotti Park where we were still not allowed into the park.
Lawyers for Brookfield Properties (the owners of the public Zuccotti Park) and lawyers for the protestors are in a hearing right now with Judge Michael Stallman to determine whether the protestors will be allowed back in with their tents and sleeping bags. For the moment a mass of protestors (I’d say 500-600) are outside the police barricades around the park while the police officers are inside the park.
Reverend Billy was an active participant in the protests and told people to tweet and get their friends down here to join in. “And tell them to bring long johns,” he said. “The Tombs are 200 feet below Centre St. and they’re cold,” referring to the historic New York City jail. He was anticipating a lot of arrests over the course of the afternoon and evening,
Thursday is a scheduled mass day of action to shut down Wall Street, beginning on Wall St. at 7 am. I think today’s crack down by Mayor Bloomberg and the NYPD will only intensify the protests and unify protestors further. I’m very disappointed in Bloomy’s handling of the situation and covert crackdown in the middle of the night.