Yes, I am a very, very small part of Occupy OKC: went to the GA meeting Friday, spent half an hour at the Occupy OKC campsite in Kerr Park last night, will spend about that much time there tonight, maybe more, and have organized a steampunk tea party there for Sunday). As I said, very small.
When I go back tonight, I will bring cash to donate so they can extend the permit.
This is not civil disobedience. Occupy Wall Street, Occupy America, Occupy (insert name of city) is not about civil disobedience. It's a protest, true, but not one that requires breaking laws. Every Occupy group I know of has secured permits and are using public lands. Public lands, you know: the lands we the people own.
We are protesting many things. Everyone has an issue near and dear to their heart that they are protesting.
For some, it's about careers and living wages. Not minimum wage jobs where the employees are treated like paper cups to be used, discarded, and replaced; but jobs where the employer has some loyalty to the employee and wants to retain them for their skills and knowledge and wants to pay them for that skill and knowledge.
Others want to remove personhood from corporations and to demand accountability.
Still others want politicians to stop ruining our country with their incessant wars - war on poverty (what, poor people don't have enough problems without becoming a military target?), war on drugs (what, addicts don't have enough problems already that we have to add to them by attacking them?), war on fat (what, people above the 25th percentile in weight don't deserve to live?), war on women (what, women don't deserve adequate health care?), war on unemployed (what, people who lost jobs due to the downturn in the economy are suddenly the enemy?), and other such bogus wars.
Others want the budget balanced and if that means higher taxes for a while and a more equitable distribution of the wealth, so be it.
Others want respect.
And so on.
It's truly a grassroots phenomenon. There are no leaders. There are no media sponsors. There are no wealthy corporations funding speeches.
It's a bunch of people who want our government to exert some control over out-of-control big businesses and an unblocking of the dam that's withholding all that "trickle down" goodness.
I can't spend a lot of time on site at Occupy OKC because I have a full time job and other commitments, but I can make time to be there for a while, and I can donate to pay for the permits.
I've organized a small steampunk tea party for Sunday afternoon. We're bring iced tea (it's supposed to be warm and sunny) and cookies to share with everybody. We're dressing in steampunk to remind people of how life was back in Victorian times, before unions, before workers' rights, before workplace safety laws, before minimum wages, before child labor laws - and also to remind people of the best of the Victorian times - the suffragettes, the institutions of unions and fair laws, manners, kindness, and tea.
Since I am also organizing an OctopodiCon Tea on Saturday to advertise OctopodiCon 2012 and share steampunked Victorian Halloween activities, we will ask if any of them would also like to attend the Occupy Tea Party. Those who do will be encouraged to make signs:
I (insert graphic flag heart) America.
We are the Right, Left, Hippies, Libertarians, Independents, Greens, Blacks, Tea Party, Socialists, Whites, Germans, Native Americans, Japanese, Koreans, Hispanics, Indians, Scottish, Steampunks, Men, Women, Disabled, - we are Americans, fighting for America.
We are listening and amplifying the message: FOR the people, BY the people, OF the people.
They aren't "Benefits" OR "Entitlements", they are Deferred Wages.
Tea is an attitude - an American one of civility and equality.
Without People, there are no Profits.
The top 1% are like Kudzu, devouring America at an astonishing speed to the detriment of everything else.
And to bring tea and treats to Kerr Park Sunday around 1:30 - 2:00 in the afternoon.