After nearly a month of activity, nearly 100 protesters filled downtown Sacramento’s Cesar Chavez Park this past Saturday to voice their opposition to Wall Street and the two big-business parties that support it.
In recent days, protest participants have faced an increasing number of prominent Democratic Party politicians cynically pronouncing their support for the popular movement. Many protesters, however, are determined to fight back against attempts by the Democratic Party and their backers in the AFL-CIO to co-opt the movement.
A San Francisco resident who asked to be identified by his nickname, Apple, voiced his concerns about the Democrats and President Obama. “Obama supporting Occupy [Wall Street] is a farce,” he said. “He’s getting money from the 1 percent. Democrats are tied to the corporations that caused the crash. I heard that [Massachusetts Democratic Congressman] Barney Frank recently came out to support the movement. Well guess what? Earlier that day, he had lunch with the bankers!
“It’s truly disgusting that inequality is so rampant. Seeing the devastation of the crisis, the attacks on youth, on public space. It’s deplorable. The people who believe that capitalism works are wrong. Need proof? Look at the world.”
Seventy Occupy Sacramento protesters have been arrested so far and it is unclear whether the city attorney will press charges. But despite the predictions of many local pundits, the protest has yet to die down.
Linda, a Citrus Heights resident and health care worker, was at Cesar Chavez Park for the first time on Saturday afternoon. “I’m tired of big corporations getting away with whatever they want to do without any repercussions,” she said. “But when it comes to us, it’s a different story. I’m paying $600 a month for health care and I make $1,000 a month as a health care worker. I’d like a bailout.
“I lost respect for what my government stands for. I don’t agree with any of them because they’re all for themselves. It’s very disheartening.”
Linda also voiced her frustration with Barack Obama’s multibillion-dollar giveaway to private health care companies through the poorly named Affordable Care Act of 2010: “I still can’t get insurance because I have a medical condition. Health care reform hasn’t changed a thing for me. It’s made things worse! We need free health care for all.”