A bit after 10 p.m. on Saturday night in occupied Liberty Plaza, there was a celebration around the media tables. Photocopied facsimiles of Sunday’s New York Daily News were being passed around and photographed. After having held the plaza with hundreds of protesters at any given time for a week, and having kept the blocks surrounding the Stock Exchange barricaded by police all the while, the protest was finally getting serious news coverage.
“The Daily News!” I heard someone say on the plaza. “It’s because this is a sustained occupation.”
Exclaimed one of those doing media relations, “We’ve already won!”
Just a few hours earlier, it seemed certain that a full-on police dispersal would come that night. Contingency plans were being discussed by the protesters’ General Assembly. But now the Daily News cover and the presence of TV vans seemed like guardian angels, ensuring that they’d make it until morning.
So what occasioned the media’s sudden interest? To what do these protesters, who purport to represent “the 99 percent” of Americans disenfranchised by a corrupt corporate and political elite, owe these headlines?
Police violence, of course.