On September 17th, 2011 thousands of protestors marched on Wall street. Their demands were as diverse as their constituents, including everything from banning the death penalty to ending poverty. What seems to be missing from this rather dedicated action is any serious mainstream media coverage.
But you wouldn’t know much about any of this from the corporate media–outlets that seem much more interested in protests of the Tea Party variety.
The anti-corporate protests have been lightly covered in the hometown New York Times: One piece (9/18/11) largely about how the police blocked access to Wall Street, and one photo (9/22/11) with the caption “Wall Street Protest Whirls On.”
The protests have been treated with brief mentions on CNN, like this one from host Wolf Blitzer (9/19/11): “Protests here in New York on Wall Street entering a third day. Should New Yorkers be worried at all about what’s going on?”
From the ABC, CBS and NBC network news, we could find nothing at all in the Nexis news database.
But I thought the media was librul!!??
Well, what have we not seen from this lack of coverage? I guess some police are pepper spraying peaceful protesters. And according to Raw Story, some more unfortunate behavior on behalf of the police,
If the media is not covering the protests that gives police license to take more liberties. It also delegitimizes some really legitimate grievances.
You can say what you will about protests that are not strategic or focused and those are legitimate critiques–but the fundamental power of protesting when all other avenues have failed us is important to any semblance of democracy we might have, whether it be a strategic single issue protest or a faceless unanimous mass uprising. If protesters aren’t listened to, represented or covered, we have all but lost our voice.
We all know if Wall street was occupied by the Tea Party it would be on every evening news program in the country. And why is that? A reader diary at Firedoglake susses out the hypocrisy,
Dick Cheney’s daughter was allowed to shut down one of the busiest traffic aggregators in lower Manhattan. She was allowed to erect her outdoor theater stage right in front of the main door to the federal courthouse–where she was protesting against holding the KSM trial in federal court. She was given her full measure of symbolism and First Amendment expression
Well, of course she was. She’s Dick Cheney’s daughter.
Contrast that with the Occupy Wall Street protests. There, the NYPD is denying the protestors the right to use blue tarps to cover themselves when it’s pouring rain. Movable orange fencing is being used to corral people. And unarmed and non violent protestors are being maced, punched and dragged.
The NYPD is not allowing the protest to actually happen anywhere near Wall Street itself, denying the protestors their symbolic expression.
Point taken. make sure you let people know what is going down on Wall street and check out these pictures if you don’t believe it is as bad as they are saying it is.