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Topics Homepage> The Occupy Movement does more good than harm. > CON side

The Occupy Movement does more good than harm.


1st--Gary Johnson, the former governor of New Mexico, stated, "The system is corrupt. There is no other way to describe it, and it's time we faced that simple truth. And maybe instead of dismissing or trying to manipulate the Occupiers to partisan advantage, we should all just go join them. All we need to agree about is that the status quo sucks."

2nd--"These young people of Occupy Wall Street have my total support. I have walked among them and listened. I support, with my actions, their contention that something smells of corruption in America when the few who give large sums of money to politicians receive special favors in return, while the average citizen is foreclosed-on and forgotten. They are asking questions about injustice, and special-interest control, and institutional corruption that need to be asked, that must be asked in a nation headed in the wrong direction," stated Buddy Roemer, the former governor of Louisiana.

Occupy Movement -- the protests occurring only in the United States in which protesters are "occupying" the streets of some of the most busy places
More good than harm - we are not trying to say that the occupy movement does no harm at all, but rather that the good done by the occupy movement outweighs the harm

1. Assertion: The Occupy Movement is disruptive.

Evidence: On September 17, 1,000 protesters marched through the streets. By September 19, 7 people were already arrested. On September 24, at least 80 arrests were made for blocking the traffic or more disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. On October 1, 700 arrests were made because they marched across the Brooklyn Bridge, causing the traffic to be blocked. Also, one night, 200 protesters tried to storm barricades blocking them from Wall Street and the Stock Exchange. Several hundreds protesters were arrested across the U.S., mostly for refusing to obey police orders to leave public areas. In Chicago, there were 175 arrests; in Arizona, almost 100; and in New York City, more than 70, including at least 40 in Times Square. On November 2, protesters in Oakland shut down the Port of Oakland, which is the fifth busiest port in the nation. Around 30 people were arrested.

2. Assertion: The Occupy Movement is violent, which causes loss of revenue.

Reasoning/Evidence: Many of the protesters fight with the police, trash stores, build barricades, and start fires. These protesters are violent, and people are injured because of their attacks. The Occupy Movement has caused cities to spend thousands of dollars. While they simply continue to occupy locations, they are costing us millions of dollars. The protests are out of control and are causing countries all over the world to waste millions of dollars because of the damage made by these protesters. The money could have gone towards creating more jobs, or preventing many more foreclosures. The Occupy Movement needs to stop.

On November 2, a masked protester smashed a window at a Wells Fargo Bank branch. In Rome, masked and hooded militants wearing makeshift body armor, in black bloc fashion, participated in the protests centered in St. John Lateran Square and committed numerous violent acts. They threw Molotov cocktails and other homemade explosives, burnt and blew up cars, burnt buildings, and smashed property such as ATMs and shop windows. The Roman Catholic church Santi Marcellino e Pietro al Laterano received extensive damage, including a statue of the Virgin Mary being thrown into the street and destroyed. Several unexploded petrol bombs were found on streets by Italian police. At least 135 people were injured, included 105 police officers, several of whom were left in critical condition. Almost 20 people had to be arrested because of the violence. The Rome example from the previous point caused over 1,000,000 euros of damage, which is equivalent to 1.3 million dollars.] Much worse, cities across the United States have spent at least 13 million dollars because of the Occupy Movement. In Los Angeles, the property damage to a park, including destroyed sprinklers, has been $200,000. In Oakland, the city had to spend more than $2.4 million because of the protests. In New York City, the police department has spent $7 million in overtime on the protests. In Atlanta, the city spent nearly $652,000 on protests. Also, the example of the Oakland port being shut down caused a loss of revenue. It is the fifth busiest port in the nation.

3. Assertion: There is no clear goal or future to the movement, an important aspect of any protest.

Reasoning/Evidence: All protests need a goal. If there is no clear goal, why do we need the extra disruption and violence? They are causing more troubles than they are trying to fix! Are they protesting the 99%, corrupt America, or for more jobs? There have been many other effective protests in the past but they all had a clear motive. For example, during the Vietnam War, the students were protesting to get the soldiers home. It worked well because it had a clear goal. Another example is the American Revolution. The colonists in North America were frustrated with the unfair rulings of the British government and protested using both words an actions. Their goal was to get out of the grasp of the British government. More examples include the American Labor Movement, the Women's Rights Movement, and the Civil Rights Movement. They have talked about adding new amendments, changing laws and altering political procedures. These actions all involve changes that are not well thought out and are not a long-term solution. The Occupy Protests lack a future direction and legitimate proposed solutions.