Activism, Protests & Rights

Adam Kokesh and Occupy Washington DC

A couple videos have been uploaded to the internet which I find rather unnerving. These are videos taken of the General Assembly in the Occupy Washington DC movement.

First of all, I am a firm believer in gathering as many opinions and facts as possible before formulating any one conclusion, as well as making every attempt to keep my mind open to change or slightly alter my opinions as more data comes in.  An online friend of mine, who is a strong Ron Paul supporter, sent me these two videos.  Although I do not support Ron Paul nor the Republican party, I do have the utmost respect for my friend as he has listened to my views with an open mind and friendly attitude.  In return, I listen to him.  I may not agree, and he knows this, but there is a mutual respect gained.

When I watched these two videos, I found them to be rather unnerving.  I am a strong supporter of the Occupy Wall Street movement, and my opinions have not changed on this.  However, this does not mean I must agree 100% to all the actions and demands within the movement.  I feel that if those that support the movement do so with 100% agreement with all actions and demands, then we are following in the footsteps of our own bipartisanship government.  The Occupy Wall Street movement will best be served to learn, evolve and grow.  This having been said….

These two videos were filmed by Adam Kokesh.  If you are not familiar with him, Wikipedia has a very good description.  In brief, though, Adam is an outspoken activist, and can be labeled as radical from time to time.  He is a veteran of the Iraq War, but has received much media attention for his anti-war protests.  Adam is also a supporter of Ron Paul, and is the son of a Santa Fe venture capitalist.  He was also picked up by Russia Today for a short period of time doing a television show called “Adam vs. The Man.”  Personally, I have found Adam to be more radical than my taste allows, and most certainly do not agree with all his views and actions.

In setting my opinions of Adam aside, the footage of the Occupy Washington DC below bothers me.  Do understand, I have NO intent whatsoever to oppose this movement.  My goal is to learn, improve and evolve into a more functioning and successful movement.

The foundation of Occupy Wall Street is that there are no leaders… this is a movement of the people, by the people, and for the people.  The man in the white shirt in this video is clearly attempting to control their group and protest, almost to the point of being radical.  He is reactive rather than proactive, and honestly, just flat out rude, overly hyper-active, and close-minded to the extreme.  The group attempted to force their way into the Newseum – which is completely unacceptable and against the primary foundation of a peaceful protest.  No, fists are not swinging, windows are not being broken, but this is passive-aggressive, counter-productive behavior.  NOT the way to earn respect from both the 99%, who do not completely understand the situation in hand, nor the 1%.  In my personal participation, I have not witnessed this behavior within our own Occupy Albuquerque, and this man and some of this group should not reflect on the majority of Occupy Wall Street.  Simply, some of this behavior is childish.  I hope they become aware and change their attitude to a much more mature persona.


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In this second video, I agree with Adam 100% here.  He is attempting to video the General Assembly within a public area.  This movement is open to be televised – and, in fact, encouraged to be televised.  This is how we are to get the word and our message out to the public.  Since I joined our first protest here in Albuquerque on October 1st, I accepted and believe that if one does not want to be photographed or video-taped, then stay home and support the movement via the internet.  A physical presence is not mandatory for support.  The mass media did not do so to begin with, although this is changing, therefore it is up to us to carry the word and help educate the citizens… the 99%.

Additionally, I am simply not fond of the way this group operates… but they are free to coordinate and function as they wish.  But to me, it reminds me of the “Lord of the Flies” combined with the movie version of Pink Floyd’s “The Wall.”  And I do disagree completely with the one statement the man in the blue t-shirt makes that if “one person breaks the law, we do so together.”  Two reactions, and the first is very strong… What the hell are you doing breaking the law?  That is NOT what this protest is about!!!  And secondly, I believe each individual is fully responsible for their own actions.  If they wish to break the law, well, it’s all on them.  I am not going to get my ass in trouble for the irresponsibility of another.


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Now, after I have voiced my negative opinions toward the actions seen in these videos, I must strongly re-iterate… I SUPPORT OCCUPY WALL STREET!  I only hope that these people become aware that their actions are being seen in a negative manner – not necessarily by all, but by many – learn and improve upon in order to help gain support and move this protest forward.

This may also be an attempt of those who join in the movement feigning support in order to “Mock and Undermine” it, which is another topic altogether now beginning to rear it’s ugly head…

We are the 99%!!!!
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Post-publishing afterthought:  These actions are really bothering me – they are so unlike what I have experienced and seen on the internet with the Occupy movement.  I have to wonder…. and absolutely NO implication here…. would Adam have gone as far as to create all this?  After all, he did lose his RT show and kind of in limbo at the moment.  Hmmmm…   He is pretty radical……..

 

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8 replies »

  1. Oh my! I hadn’t seen these videos. Thank you for bringing them to my attention. I would also like to say that you have written a very eloquent piece on what is are incredibly touchy subjects within the Occupy Movement… namely, remaining leaderless, deciding by consensus, and remaining completely peaceful without harassing non-participants and breaking the law. This movement is about “Civil Disobedience”, not willful law breaking in order to make our point.

    In addition, the issue of being photographed within a public place is also very important. I fully agree if one does not want to be photographed, do not attend. The independent media is the only way fair and impartial reporting of these events will be relayed to the public.

    As a fellow supporter of the Occupy Wall Street and Occupy Albuquerque movements, I agree with all you have stated here. I thank you for writing about this so well.

    • Thanks, Rose. Something just isn’t sitting right with me about this group. I’m not sure they’re the main core of the Occupy in DC, or some off-shoot… or actors altogether. They are just not fitting with the rest of the movement, and the other Occ DC I’ve seen online. Although, I did see video where they entered one of the Smithsonians. If I was in the museum with my family or friends, I wouldn’t want to be interrupted by any group or protest whether I’m for or against it. The message can be carried just as well – even better – outside the doors. Give respect and respect will be gained. These actions do not diminish my support, but we all need to learn from them and move forward.

  2. Thank you for expressing what I am still trying to put into words myself. I am all for peaceful, law abiding demonstrations that we have the right to engage in. Our household holds discussions on these current events pretty much on a daily basis now. I am trying to teach my teenager that great things can be accomplished with positive behavior and open communication. He has witnessed first hand radical behavior that led to quick negative consequences. I hope that in the process and progression of these demonstrations that he gets to witness positive results from productive behaviors.

  3. In response to your afterthought, It does not appear orchestrated. In fact orchestrated or provocateur stagings could not come across realistically, in my experience, for as long as they did, or as absurd as these kids came across. Not that provocateurs don’t appear absurd. They do, which is what makes them so obvious and gives it away. … No, the absurdities here seemed entirely natural. Yep, just a natural combination of ignorance with belligerence, which is fruit of plenty, on many college campuses, which is where it appears these lowbrow, semiliterate, slobs came from.

  4. I agree with you that Adam is on the radical end. Too radical for me, too. Just the getting in people’s faces and disrupting conventions is too much for me.

  5. Adam is saying and doing what most gutless change seekers would like to, but can’t.If more people had the guts to do what he is doing then perhaps the current situation in the USA would be quite different.Intellectual masturbation will not in the final equation halt the march to dictatorship.I respect Adam because he acts on his convictions.Th elites have their agenda and timetables all worked out and you need to disturb this by making the system show it’s hand at the wrong place and at the wrong time so that more people can be awakened.Make the system react to you!Sabotage them, confront them, oppose them and defeat them.

  6. Adam is saying and doing what most gutless change seekers would like to, but can’t.If more people had the guts to do what he is doing then perhaps the current situation in the USA would be quite different.Intellectual masturbation will not in the final equation halt the march to dictatorship.I respect Adam because he acts on his convictions.Th elites have their agenda and timetables all worked out and you need to disturb this by making the system show it’s hand at the wrong place and at the wrong time so that more people can be awakened.Make the system react to you!Sabotage them, confront them, oppose them and defeat them.

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