Saturday, June 22, 2013

"Occupy" Brazil

 ("Brazil's Vinegar Uprising")

There were echoes of "Occupy Wall Street" resonating throughout this piece.  Not so long ago, in Zuccotti Park, and then around this country, protests erupted, challenging not only the 1% but, as it turned out, just about anything and everything.  In Brazil, we are told that the list of complaints ranged from police brutality to loud boom boxes.

"The people/united" reminded me so much of those first days, where the marches through the streets of downtown New York City included chants  of "this is what democracy looks like" and "we are the 99%". And the placards, both then and now can be either pointed and powerful, or merely seeking "the right to stay in one place."

"Occupy" is now mostly memory, its most interesting present tense regarding compensation for books improperly discarded as all remnants of the protest were removed from its original home in New York.

Ms. Barbara states that those in the streets of Brazil "have the right to be ineffective and foolish- we're still learning how to protest". In hindsight, I think that the movement in our country never really went beyond seeming, as least to many, ineffective and foolish.

For those in Brazil,  in the giddy early days, there are lessons to be learned and mistakes to be avoided if they are not to suffer the same fate as their American counterparts. To be all encompassing, to hear many diverse voices, may at first be exciting and interesting, but ultimately may sound like not much more than a lot of noise.

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