Santa Claus at Occupy Wall Street? by Ian Wilder
Let's not have Christmas. Let's have an occupation.
I will tell you what made me think of that plan. I was reading about peaceful protesters being arrested in Cleveland last night. Occupy Cleveland has been trying to work with the police and get permits and permissions. But, the Mayor of Cleveland is acting like the protests would interfere with winter holiday festivities.
A clip at Cleveland.com states, "Mayor Frank Jackson's administration did not renew Occupy Cleveland's permits because, city officials said, the Downtown Cleveland Alliance had already been given permits until January to install Christmas lighting and displays and hold holiday events on Public Square."
What do we need Christmas lights for, when thousands of people in America are being kicked out of their homes due to the mortgage crisis? Why should we have Chanuka and Christmas and Kwanzaa feasts, when most of America is tightening their belts? How can we sing hopeful songs, when our whole government is corrupted by corporate influence, so that there is little hope for our children and our democracy?
Maybe I will sing a few Christmas carols with my family. Perhaps I will reflect a bit on the spirit of unity and the changing of the year. But, I don't want gift cards and presents. I don't need holiday lights on Main Street. And, I certainly don't need Mayors kicking people out of the park for me.
Let the protesters stay. Let every occupier stay where they are and sleep where they are. I don't want a corporate Christmas. I want to occupy Christmas.
Be glad that someone is brave enough to stand up to Wall Street, the megabanks, and the corporations who have caused our country's economic injustices and financial hardships. Join your local occupation. If you can't be there, watch over them on the Live Streams, on Twitter, and in the news. Make donations to the occupations. Urge police and politicians to respect our Constitution and be compassionate to people who work for justice. And, do it all in the Christmas spirit.