Occupy's New 'Enemy': the Police
In an online discussion this week, Natasha Lennard, Salon’s reporter covering the Occupy Wall Street movement, clearly spelled out what she believes will be the prime “enemy” for the Occupy movement this spring: the police.
The online chat was previewed on Breitbart.com.
Lennard, a former New York Times reporter who was arrested on the Brooklyn Bridge during a mass protest back in October 2011, discussed what she perceives to be police “repression” against Occupiers who recently attempted illegal civil obedience in direct actions designed to take over property, such as retaking Zuccotti Park in New York City.
Responding to a question from the audience about identifying “enemies”, Ms. Lennard replies that, while she didn’t believe that the neo-left, “Chicago school” tactic of identifying enemies was the optimal one for the movement, she did say that “racism and patriarchy” were enemies and then referred to the police as “an emerging enemy.”
Ms. Lennard’s statement seems to echo the beliefs of many in the Occupy movement. When the movement began back in the fall of 2011, many said “the police are part of the 99%.” However, the general antipathy towards law enforcement shared by many in the movement and anarchist leaders, combined with the press-garnering effectiveness of direct conflict and aggravation of police officers, soon eroded any possible feelings of solidarity.
Now that the legal resistance against the Occupy movement has stiffened, look for increasing hard-line conflict.