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We are the 99 percent letters

We are the 99 percent. We are getting kicked out of our homes. We are forced to choose between groceries and rent. We are denied quality medical care. We are suffering from environmental pollution. We are working long hours for little pay and no rights, if we’re working at all. We are getting nothing while the other 1 percent is getting everything. We are the 99 percent.

Brought to you by the people who occupy wall street. Why will YOU occupy?

I cannot afford to send my 4.0 GPA daughter to college, due to losing over $70K in the housing market collapse. I’m worth more dead.

I am the 99%

I am 20 years old and upwards of $275,000 in medical bills from this last year due to a condition I was born with.  I can’t get insurance because of a “pre-exising condition.”  I will die before America wakes up.  I am the 99%.

My parents put themselves into debt so I could get a fancy degree.  It cost over $100 grand, and I have no job prospects.

I am the 99%

Higher education is a bubble, run by the same kind of people who control our banks, our homes, our health.  My mother came to this country believing it was the only place where one’s hard work and education could allow you to transcend the bonds of race, gender, socioeconomic class.

I am about to receive my Ph.D. in a technical science from an Ivy League school.  I earned scholarships and worked two full-time jobs in college to get here.  I have worked on research and taught classes for six years on a stipend that would qualify me for welfare.  There are NO jobs waiting for me when I get my doctoral degree.  Despite working for the past six years, my university files graduate labor under a tax code that prevents me from applying for unemployment and that saves the university unforetold in tax breaks.  Because the school is a private institution, we graduate students are unable to unionize, despite the fact that we provide a significant amount of the teaching and research labor that makes this school $$.

EDUCATION IS NOT A PRIVILEGE but in this country it is held captive as such.

I went to graduate school believing that there might be some financial security afforded by a higher degree, and that with that security I could finally buy my mom her own house and take care of her.  Instead, I have wasted six years of my life and am about to enter a job market that will tell me that I am overeducated and overqualified.  I will no longer be able to help my mom pay for health insurance, and I will no longer have my own.  I pray for our good health because that’s pretty much all we will have left.

i am the 99%

5 people. Lost our home in 2008; now we live in the poorest part of a poor city across the country.

1 life threatening disease.
1 naturalized citizen with a part-time minimum wage job.
2 high school students who struggled with developmental and learning disabilities.
1 first generation college grad with 20k in debt, 2 part time minimum wage jobs, and depression/anxiety that has the power to take over my life without medication.

Some weeks we can’t afford groceries. We certainly can’t afford the gas to travel anywhere but work and back.


job. I am “living” with my mother again to get back on my feet.  So far, the best I can do is a part time retail job paying $8 an hour.

I am hearing impaired with cochlear implant. My cochlear implant warranty expired.  I do not have the money to renew it.  How can I work at my new minimum wage job when my implant is broken?  I need it to HEAR.

I am the 99%.

(and I owe so much money)

I am 32 and worked in customer service for over 15 years. Last job I was wrongfully fired and fought for and won my unemployment in 2009 from a well known corporation. I should have sued but didn’t because of my lack of faith in the justice system. My husband, since 2006, works for a union shop for little pay for over 15 years. If we waited to marry as planned I couldn’t afford to pay the medical bills. My husband and I can’t afford to go to college and our jobs were not flexible with scheduling unless you were in good with someone at the company. I can’t afford to pay for the physical therapy needed to treat my fybromyalgia. I have to choose between that, glasses I need or braces my son needs. I have a medical marijuana card for my chronic pain. I don’t agree with mainstream medicine but can’t afford a holistic doctor. I can’t get a job because I am “over qualified” and the jobs out there pay less than my unemployment. We are lucky we inherited a home and have my husband’s family living with us soon. They had to take money out of their 401K to pay for repairs on this house. We are lucky the house is big enough for all of us. Myself, my husband and his parents have all had to file bankruptcy. We went into debt fighting for joint custody and won of my step-daughter. Now we are in the process of fighting for full custody of my 14 yr old son, BECAUSE HE WANTS IT. I have been caught in a broken friend of the court system and have to defend myself for my natural approach to treating my pain. I’m a loving, caring mother, wife, sister and friend. I am the 99%.

I ‘m a hard-working, college educated Generation X Father of two.  I am lucky to have a full-time job but when you correct for inflation my pay is less than my parents in the 1970’s. Now younger people in Generation Y can’t find work that will pay them enough to survive.  Multi-national corporations have prospered in the past 40 years.  They have unfair advantage in our society, no allegiance to the United States, no social responsibility, and no limit to their greed.  I fear for the future economic well being of my kids and my country.  I am the 99 percent.

i am a 19 year old student with 18 credit hours and 2 part time jobs. i am over 4000 dollars in debt but my paychecks are just enough to get me to school and back. next year my plan was to attend a 4 year college and get my bfa, but now i am afraid that without a co-signer i will have no shot at a loan and even if i can get a loan i am afraid that i will leave college with no future and a crippling debt. as a family we are losing our home. my mother lost her job and hasnt been able to find one. we are all living paycheck to paycheck. the stress is taking physical tolls on all of us but i still consider myself one of the lucky ones

we are angry, we are stressed, we are so fucking tired

we are the 99%

I’m 15 y/o and gay. My parents moved us to California for a better life, I was bullied and in the HOSPITAL for being GAY.

We are in Cali now but my mom and dad work 60+ hours a week.

My family is gone

My family is the 99%

I’d never been unemployed, until the company I worked for tanked a month ago. Up until then, I was living paycheck to paycheck, sharing a small apartment with my elderly, unemployed mother, making just enough to pay rent, grocery bills and medical insurance.

Now we have no jobs, no savings, no health care and no furniture in our apartment; we sold almost everything we had to pay for food and rent. We both have extensive medical problems and are wondering how we’re going to pay for the medications we need to keep functioning.

I don’t want sympathy, or handouts. I want a job, affordable rent and the restoration of the “American Dream.”

I AM THE 99%!!!

I have a master’s degree from a top university and $75,000 in student loan debt. I have applied to jobs all over the country but I can’t even get an interview. My mom lost her job in 2010 and hasn’t been able to find anything since. I don’t know what we will do when her unemployment runs out. I’ve given up all hope in having a future.

I am the 99%!

I’m 41 years old and wanted to be a teacher. Bachelor’s degree, 3.95 GPA, couldn’t afford more student loans. 100k in student loan debt, 15k in credit card debt. In 2011, I hope to make $8,000 a year. I’m lucky in that I run a small shop in a state where progressive policies have provided some (if limited) options for people with no health insurance. Can’t afford to hire anyone around here though, so I work 7 days a week, 12 to 14 hours a day with no holidays and no sick days. I’ve been working approximately 90 hours a week, 52 weeks a year since 2006. I’m grateful to have a job at all. If business is good, I can make up to $20 a day (roughly $1.50 an hour). If business is bad, I don’t get paid. Since I can’t afford an apartment, I live illegally at work. Friends are kind enough to help out with leftover food when they can. Will likely never be able to afford marriage, childred, house, but maybe a used car someday! I’m neither irresponsible, nor lazy, nor foolish. I’m just the 99%.

How can I repay my debts and save for the future when all of my wages from my $9-an-hour food service job go towards disgustingly high rent, outrageously inflated taxes, and out-of-pocket medical expenses? No insurance. No help from anyone. No future unless I sacrifice my dignity in the present. Should I go back to school and take out more debt on the off-chance that things will get better? I can’t even move back home because I don’t have one anymore. I am the 99% and I’m enraged.

They call it the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe in it.

I am 39 years old, and I receive disability because I was born with a Peripheral Neurological disorder called Charcot Marie Tooth Syndrome.  I didn’t always receive SSD…I went to college and earned a dual Masters in Special Education and Literacy, because I wanted to help children with disabilities succeed.  After college I worked my butt off for 7 years as a teacher, until my body could no longer keep up.  I had to declare bankruptcy, and give up an occupation I put 15 years into, all because of an injury that took 30 seconds to occur.  I thought college and a career was what I was supposed to do…for the past few years I have questioned that decision.  Now I work 20 hours a week as a secretary because that is all my body can handle, and there are many days it can’t even handle that.  I have no retirement or pension, and have no idea what my future holds.  SSD doesn’t cover my rent and other expenses, though I know I am lucky to have it at all.  the small income I make doesn’t even come close to covering my medical costs, though I know how fortunate I am to even have a job.  I am one of the lucky ones.  I have parents who love me, and if it wasn’t for them I don’t know where I would be.  It used to be my dream to help disabled children face the obstacles I have faced.  My current dream is to be self sufficient, so my parents don’t have to worry anymore.  I am the 99 percent.


Original source on tumblr with more letters posted, click here.



  1. Love your blog. Your photos and words capture the anger and the anguish that people are feeling around the country.

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