Posts Tagged “Occupy DC”
Washington, D.C. is a “city of protests.”
That’s how former Washington Post photographer and two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lucian Perkins, a featured artist in the Goethe-Institut’s new exhibit, Facing Democracy, portrays the District in her series of photographs of the Occupy D.C. movement. On Monday evening, Jan. 28, the Goethe-Institut hosted a reception for Perkins and two other artists, Danny Wilcox Frazier and Jenny Graf Sheppard, who documented the Occupy Movement and the civil unrest in the United States.
Perkins considers protests an “important part of who we are as Americans” and set out to capture images of the Occupy D.C. movement and anti-war protesters. The walls of the exhibit are hung with images of confrontations between protestors and the U.S. Park Police, tents protestors temporarily lived in, and anti-war demonstrators. Although many of the photographs feature animated protestors and policemen, a particularly striking image is of a reserved woman sitting alone in the street with all of her belongings. About 20 of Perkins’s photographs are featured at the gallery.
One of the walls of the exhibit featured a video from Baltimore-based artist Jenny Graf Sheppard. Entitled Site Specific and Everywhere, the piece is a 15-minute loop of images that have influenced the Occupy Movement. Graf Sheppard’s body of work demonstrates the role New Media has played in shaping various political and social movements, including Occupy D.C.
Danny Wilcox Frazier contributed Foreclosures in Detroit, having spent the last six years documenting people grappling with the economic crisis that has devastated rural communities in his home state of Iowa.
Facing Democracy is on display until Feb. 24, and the exhibition is part of the larger “Mapping Democracy” Event Series that focuses on the possible changes and future of democracy. As a part of the series, the Goethe-Institut is screening documentary films on the theme of political power across Greece, the United States, and Germany. Tickets for the films are $4.75 for students.
The Goethe-Institut is located at 812 Seventh St. NW, about two blocks from the Gallery Place-Chinatown Metro Stop.
Photo: Lucian Perkins/Goethe-Institut Washington
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As Hoyas wrapped up their fall semester classes yesterday, hundreds of Occupy protestors from across the country converged on K Street NW for “Day of Action: Occupiers Unite”, which targeted the lobbying industry. One protester who was arrested, a 75-year old Methodist minister from Tennessee, told the Washington Post, “K Street is the place to be if you’re going to stop the moneybags who are corrupting our government.” Snarling traffic, the protestors blocked streets in the K Street area for much of the day.
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Photos: Lucia He
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Are they serious? makes a comparison I can’t particularly disagree with:
Admirable post from JA, but there is no point in being thoughtful and constructive at this point. Waste of time. Neighbors will stake our most extreme position possible and then refuse to retreat. They are like congressional republicans.
C.H. responds to some Occupy D.C. haters in the comments section:
Some of these comments make me ashamed to be a Georgetown student. Many of you are proof of that our country’s leaders and (unfortunately) future leaders are totally morally bankrupt. Work hard! Get that internship! But whatever you do, don’t think about all those poor and unemployed people protesting around you.
And UNDERGOD is ready to tango with our new editor:
ONE NATION ABOVE UNDERGOD.
I AM YOUR NEW VOX-TROLLING UNDERLORD.
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After a story ran earlier this week in The Hoya about Georgetown’s conspicuous absence from the Occupy DC protest (which prompted a certain American University student to accuse us all of being 1%-ers), apparently the Occupiers have decided to take the action to us. It has been announced that later today, at about 2:30 p.m., the McPherson Square gang will be marching from their place of outdoor residence to the Key Bridge, in an event entitled “Action: Get on the Bridge!”
According to Occupy DC‘s website, the event, which is being billed as a “Labor-Community-Occupy Day of Action,” is in solidarity with OurDC, a not-for-profit organization aimed at bringing jobs into the District. The website’s description of the event cites the Key Bridge, the structural flaws of which were also the premise for a recent speech by President Obama, as “a vivid example of the many roads, schools and other infrastructure sites in need of repair.”
The D.C. Occupiers won’t be alone in their Key Bridge protests. Occupy NOVA, the Northern Virginia contingent of the Occupy movement which has recently started hanging out in Welburn Square, are also planning on marching to the bridge tomorrow afternoon, meeting their D.C. kindred spirits for the protest.
Vox would like to point out that, while hoards of protesters parading across the District and Northern Virginia will surely make quite the statement, the Occupy Wall Street people are currently en route from the now-empty Zucotti Park all the way to the District.
Photo from Georgetown Law.
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Last Thursday, Peter Nesbitt (SFS ’12) planned his own movement at McPherson Square: handing out job applications to Occupy DC protesters.
“Tired of whining protesters?,” Nesbitt wrote on the Facebook event, which was postponed. ”Thursday at noon at the McPherson Square campsite of the Occupy DC crowd, lets hand out job applications, college applications, and military recruitment info. Lets make the 1% a little bit bigger. Pick up job apps at local restaurants and stores on your way.”
“I think myself and most Americans empathize with the frustration with the economy and political system,” Nesbitt said of the protesters in a Christian Post article. “If I can help someone to make a better career or life decision, then I feel that I have made the world a slightly better place.”
27-year-old Nesbitt joined the army after high school to pay for college, and now he is trying to help protesters help themselves. “Working and getting education are more effective than protesting and camping out,” Nesbitt said. “Both increase opportunity and mobility while providing dignity and empowerment.”
The event last Thursday was cancelled to allow more people to participate at a later date.
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Late Friday afternoon, a group of about 15 students met on Copley Lawn to discuss their involvement in the ongoing Occupy D.C. movement. Although the conversation was framed around how the group could galvanize interest at Georgetown for the march on McPherson Square this coming Friday, attendees also touched on the broader implications of the movement.
The facilitator of the discussion was Gina Bull (SFS ’12), who made it very clear that she was only serving to keep things organized because the Occupy movement is non-hierarchical. Attendees deferred to each other when they wanted to speak, and “sparkled” (picture spirit fingers) when they agreed with something.
The student march on Friday will start at 3:00 p.m. with a briefing on the route. A group of Georgetown students will be gathering earlier at Healy Gates and leaving for the rally at 2:00 p.m.
The Occupy movement has frequently been criticized for its lack of a clear message, but to the attendees of the meeting, this ambiguity needs to be maintained. To them, the 99% is a diverse population united by discontent.
“We don’t have a powerpoint,” one participant put it.
The participants may have been united by discontent, but were discontent about different things. To one, the massive debt that students were graduating with—only to then face unemployment or under-employment—is unacceptable. To another, it was the 2008 financial crisis and the policies that led up to it that brought her to Copley Lawn. Yet another identified as being born into the 1%, and she knew it was the privilege of her background that gave her a head start in life.
Moving forward, the group decided to have a board in Red Square this Wednesday for students write on, explaining why they are the 99%.
The full realease about the march is published after the break.
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