But something strange happened. It just kept growing, not only in Wall Street but all around the country. Jeez, they're even planning to Occupy Huntington WV on Friday and actions are also planned for Morgantown and Wheeling. It's kind of interesting to see something pretty spontaneous erupting all over.
Nobody seems to be in charge. The fact that tons of younger people are getting involved, probably for the first time, is something you don't see every day.
This seems to be happening on a much bigger scale than the much touted right wing anti-health care reform bullying that helped put the Tea Party on the map at congressional town hall meetings in 2009.
A common criticism of these new actions is that they seem to take a (nonviolent) shotgun approach, meaning that they cover the map of issues rather than getting too specific. And from what I've seen, there's some validity to that. I tend to be pretty specific and focused about issues I've worked on. Still, it's interesting and exciting to see such a spontaneous series of actions raising economic justice issues.
It's still too soon to see whether this is a flash in the pan or the start of something big. You never can tell. Historically, a lot of big things start out small and messy. It doesn't happen very often, but it happens.
The American Friends Service Committee is encouraging staff and volunteers who have the inclination and the ability to take part in actions, provided these actions are nonviolent, that they target issues rather than specific individuals, and that they lift up the dignity of all individuals.
I'm reminded of a couple of verses from the New Testament book of Acts. The Rabbi Gamaliel, when asked about the nascent Christian movement urges a wait and see approach:
"if this plan or this undertaking is of human origin, it will fail; if it be of men, it will come to naught, but if it be of God, ye will not be able to overthrow it; lest perhaps ye be found even to fight against God."
I don't mean to drag God into this literally, but I like Gamaliel's point. This may fizzle out or it may have legs. We'll see. Messy or not, I'd like to see it run like hell.