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It’s been over a month since the Occupy Wall Street Movement began. Like many others; despite my active involvement and overall support, OWS has both inspired and enraged me. It’s made me remember why I became an organizer. And it’s made me realize why sometimes, I want to quit.

A lot of us have reasons for feeling enraged. At my first GA, several young white men who identified themselves proudly as those who had been at Zuccotti Park since “Day One” shouted disagreements with a Black woman who voiced legal concerns about the risks of arrest for undocumented protestors.  The men used their self-proclaimed “veteran” status to silence and ridicule the legitimate concerns of some of the most economically disadvantaged and historically marginalized of the 99%–undocumented workers.

A few days later, on indigenous people’s day, a white man who identified himself as “one of the OWS organizers” physically and verbally attacked a female jaranera who was performing son jarocho music. Apparently, she was “standing on the flower bed.”

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Ernesto Aguilar of People of Color Organize told me: “Hubris–the notion that Occupy has somehow organically undone racial disparity, patriarchy and class divisions after six weeks of camp-outs–is a greater danger than anything external to Occupy. Most people came to this drive with a lifetime of white privilege taught to all races, and even the greatest general assembly ever isn’t going to break down those lessons overnight.”

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99faces99signs:

Lori
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Xan Joi travels the country in her truck setting-up workshops on OWS and racism within the movement.

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Sunday Recap: 11/13/11—11/20/11

Max Keiser & Roseanne Barr Discuss Occupy Wall Street and Banksters [video]

Occupy Maine Day 1: Why Are You Here? [video]

Occupy Augusta, Maine Day 8: Why Are You Here? [video]

Occupy Bangor 11.12.11: Why Are You Here? [video]

"Radio Host Mocks Occupy Wall Street Rape Victims" by Britni Danielle for Clutch Magazine

"Why Homelessness Is Becoming an Occupy Wall Street Issue" by Barbara Ehrenreich for The Nation

"Occupy Wall Street: The Most Important Thing in the World Now" by Naomi Klein for The Nation

"Mamas of Color and Their Kids Tell Greedy Banks: It’s Time to Share" by Julianne Hing for Colorlines

Occupy California 11.9.11: Part 1 (police brutality) [video]

"Why Facebook’s ‘Occupy a Vagina’ Event Is Not Okay" by Stephanie Rogers for Bitch Flicks

"An Amended and Updated Announcement About a Day of Women’s Action—November 25" from Occupy Patriarchy

"Occupy Wall Street: Meditations in the Dark" by Francesca Lia Block for Occupy Writers

The Climactic Minutes of Last Night’s Occupy Raid: 11.15.11 [video]

Occupy Asheville—Meet Lindsey Miguelez from The Woman Politic [video]

Woman Speaking at OWS General Assembly [transcript]

Woman Speaking at OWS General Assembly [transcript]

"Quitting the MSM Over OWS" from Sarah’s Tumblr (Sometimes Grumblr)

"Women Own 1% of the World’s Property—Occupy That" by Soraya Chemaly for the Huffington Post

"Occupy Wall Street: How About We Occupy Rape Culture?" by Coco Papy for Persephone Magazine

"Feminism and Occupy Wall Street" by Meghan Murphy for The F Word [podcast]

Revised/Updated: “Beyond Safer Spaces to FREE SPACE (for Women)” for Occupy Patriarchy

"Steps" by Jen Hirt for Occupy Writers

"The American Fall" by Cara Hoffman for Occupy Writers

Occupy Auckland: Marama Speaks for Maori Women [video]

"But We Included a Woman" by Lucinda Marshall for Occupy Patriarchy

"The Wealth of a Nation Starts in a Woman’s Womb" by Valerie Young for Voices of Partnership

Brave Occupy Wall Street Protester Speaks Out [video]

"Women: The Invisible Poor" by Leslie Bennetts for The Daily Beast

"Racism/Classism/Sexism at Occupy Wall Street" by tipsywit (via Tumblr)

"Are We Bonobos or Chimpanzees? Evolution and Occupy Wall Street" by Melanie Butler for PinkTank

"Women and the Occupation—2/3rds of the Working Hours, 10% of the Income" by ellinorianne for Daily Kos

"Pink Slip Big Banks" by Rae for PinkTank


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Racism/Classism/Sexism at Occupy Wall Street

tipsywit:

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(Source: desmondtutuvevo)

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I’ve begun to wonder how much we can facilitate our way out of these established gender roles, and really how much facilitation can erase the feelings of being marginalized once it has already happened. I see people who still feel hurt and upset even though very concrete things have been put in place to help them have an opportunity to be heard.  Are they going to need more time to see that we are trying, or will they always feel slighted? 

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I came away from this experience feeling unsupported, disrespected, maligned and even more oppressed. There is no real regard for oppressed black people there and many of these people are there at Occupy Wall Street for the novelty of it. They have no idea that this stance they are taking is dealing with very real problems that we as black people face every day. This is not a parade or a party or a game for us and if we are there, we are there because it is very serious for us and standing up to these companies and oppressive forces is about standing up for our lives. We don’t have rich white parents and communities to run home to after the whole thing ends. We don’t have safety nets like they do. The unemployment crisis in the black community is far more of a crisis for the people of our community than it is for them.