#OWS 2.0

Zuccotti Park, 11/16/11: Alejandro holds a flag with the image of Benjamin Franklin's woodcut ("Join, or Die") from May 9, 1754. "I'm reclaiming the rattlesnake as a symbol of American independence from the Tea Party."

After yesterday’s 1:00 am upheaval, protesters are back in Michael Bloomberg’s new and improved Zuccotti Park (all-nighters, upright, ok; sleepovers, a little lie down, not so much).  And although today in the steady rain, the occupiers’ numbers were quite diminished, the movement which celebrates its second (month) anniversary tomorrow (with a day of action) is now much more than the prime piece of the lower Manhattan real estate that it had called home.  OWS has burst through the barricades, exploding beyond one privately-owned park, to occupy sites throughout the country, cyberspace and our national discourse.

Tuesday morning the protesters tried to occupy Duarte Square, a vacant and enclosed lot at Canal Street and Sixth Avenue.  But Trinity Church, one of New York’s largest landowners, denied access saying, “We didn’t invite the protesters in.”  But even a lease from Trinity is no guarantee of longevity on its property.  In 1980 Film Forum renovated a garage on Watts Street.  Nine years later, Trinity took a wrecking ball to the twin cinemas–and the 30-year lease–replacing it with an office tower.

Duarte Square 11/15/11: John, shooting video through the enclosure surrounding the lot (as other protesters climb the wall to see tents being set up), said, "We're being called unAmerican, so I'm literally wrapping myself in the flag."

But maybe Mayor Bloomberg does know an illegal occupation when he sees one–he’s illegally occupying City Hall.  After the voters of New York twice approved referenda limiting the mayor and members of the City Council to two four-year terms, he undid the will of the people to run and win a third term.  The campaign’s tab: $108, 371,685.01.

Zuccotti Park, 10/15/11: Before it was reopened to protesters, Walter, who fought in Vietnam, looked at the cops and private security guards inside, behind the barricades and said, "I like the real estate reversal. The cops can have the park and we can take the rest of Manhattan."

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