Thursday, October 6, 2011

Occupy Wall Street spreads to Philadelphia, 250 at City Hall

A scene from the Occupy Philadelphia rally outside City Hall, Oct. 6, 2011.
Occupy Wall Street-style protesters swarmed Philadelphia City Hall Thursday with messages of anger and hope.
An estimated 250 people amassed on the 15th Street side, holding banners, picket signs and props.
Teresa Shoatz of West Philadelphia held a poster-board sign saying, “Jail bankers for fraud.”
“I’ve been out here for an hour, and I’ll be out here till whenever,” Shoatz said. “I’m here about the issues of education, unions, the Philadelphia School District. We’re spending more money on prisons than schools.”
It was one of many rallies taking place around the country. The demonstrations started in New York City after an activist group that publishes the magazine Adbusters called for action, inspired by the Arab Spring protests in Egypt. Twitter, Facebook and other social media have helped organize the rallies on short notice.
On Thursday in Philadelphia, protesters invoked vehicles passing by to honk horns — and drivers from cars, tour buses and even a police car responded.
Carol Levy, a Lansdale, Pa., resident, asked passers-by to “come join us.”
“I’m concerned about corporations’ unfettered access to our finances,” Levy said.
A woman who identified herself as Alex from Philadelphia held a sign that said, “I was wrongfully terminated.”
“I need a job,” said Alex, who said she was a leasing consultant at a property management firm but was let go without cause. “I intend to find a salaried position that will pay living expenses — rent, clothes, food, medical, education.”

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