2011: A Year in Revolt

from Occupy Wall Street

 

2011 will be remembered as a year of revolution, the beginning of the end for an unsustainable global system based on poverty, oppression, and violence. In dozens of countries across the Arab world, people rose up against broken economies and oppressive regimes, toppling dictators and inspiring the world to action. Popular rejection of austerity measures and attacks on worker’s rights brought millions to the streets in Greece, Iceland, Spain, Portugal, Italy, the UK, Chile, Wisconsin and elsewhere.

By midsummer, murmurs of “occupying Wall Street” were stirring online, and on July 14th, we registered the domain occupywallst.org and began organizing. The first New York City General Assembly was held August 2nd and the Occupation of Liberty Square began on September 17th.

Fueled by anger at the growing disparities between rich and poor, frustrated by government policies that benefit a tiny elite at the expense of the majority, and tired of the establishment’s failure to address fundamental economic inequalities, OWS offered a new solution. We built a People’s Kitchen to feed thousands, opened a People’s Library, created safer spaces, and provided free shelter, bedding, medical care, and other necessities to anyone who needed them. While cynics demanded we elect leaders and make demands on politicians, we were busy creating alternatives to those very institutions. “A revolution has been set in motion, and we cannot be stopped.”

[read the whole article for the retrospective]

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