As the Occupy Wall Street movement enters its third week, similar occupations are popping up all over the country, including here in D.C. At McPherson Square, located just a couple blocks from the White House on K Street, an occupation which began Oct. 1 appears to be growing stronger.
Yesterday evening, the Occupy DC group marched on the headquarters of Koch Industries, whose owners, Charles and David Koch, are major backers of the Tea Party. The protesters cited a recent report by Bloomberg Markets which details the company’s use of bribes in order to obtain foreign contracts.
“Koch Industries exerts a lot of influence on our and many foreign governments. They have been involved in selling millions of dollars of petrochemical equipment to Iran. They are the epitome of malicious involvement of predatory corporations in OUR political system,” noted the group’s website, OccupyDC.org.
Monday morning, a half dozen group members gathered outside a nearby Bank of America, which led to the branch being closed down, the activists report. That evening, the group protested outside the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), which critics say assists corporations in secretly writing anti-consumer and anti-environmental legislation that is then used by legislators across the country.
Thursday, D.C. is likely to experience its second occupation. In conjunction with Oct. 6, which marks the end of the first decade of the U.S. war on Afghanistan, a mass demonstration is being held at Freedom Plaza, where organizers then plan on camping out.
Among those who will be at Freedom Plaza tomorrow is Carrie Stone, a 56-year-old grandmother who is expected to complete her 200-mile walk from West Virginia to D.C. early this afternoon. Stone said of her almost-completed walk along the C&O railroad, “I met lots of people along the way. I didn’t meet a single person who opposed what I was doing or who even criticized it. I just said [to them], “I am the 99 percent and so are you.”
(Watch the Bruce DePuyt interview with Pete Tucker which begins at 45:05)