“The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church” —Tertullian
The Mayor Bloomberg-ordered NYPD raid of Occupy Wall Street‘s home base at Zuccotti Park earlier in the week only served to embolden and enliven what had been a sagging protest heading into colder winter days. On Wednesday’s “Day of Action,” which celebrated the two-month anniversary of the beginning of #OWS, small crowds grew into big crowds which grew into enormous crowds of protesters, all supporting the right of the movement to exist. Perhaps Mayor Bloomberg spilled the blood of #OWS too soon or too harshly — the regeneration was powerful and palpable.
The Day of Action culminated in a march across the Brooklyn Bridge — the chilling scene of an NYPD bottling and mass arrests at the beginning of the movement. An NYPD scanner estimated that more than 32,000 people marched across the bridge on Wednesday night.
Erik Paulsen recorded, edited and posted the final phase of the day:
And as the protesters marched into Brooklyn, some 32,000-plus were treated to a “bat signal” projection on the bland Verizon building in Lower Manhattan. It read:
Watch it here:
BoingBoing spoke with Mark Read, the #OWSer behind the “bat-signal,” about the projection.
NYPD officials say at least 240 people were arrested on Wednesday.
One of those arrested was retired Philadelphia Police captain Ray Lewis who marched with the 99 Percent in the morning. The New York Observer posted this shot of Lewis in flexi-cuffs:
One of the more tense moments of the day came just before 2 pm ET, when NYPD officers barricaded protesters in Zuccotti Park while they went after one particular OWS member.
The New York Times slideshow from the Day of Action is absolutely breathtaking:
The Times offers more on the arrest of this bloodied mess, a 20-year-old named Brandon Watts:
Mr. Watts went up to the officers, grabbed the barrier between him and them and began pushing and kicking it, shoving it against the officers. Mr. Watts grabbed a deputy inspector’s hat and ran back into the park. The officers ran after him. He resisted arrest, kicking officers, and when he was brought down, he struck his head, causing bleeding. He was taken to Bellevue Hospital Center, where he was treated but not admitted.
After a morning of marches and tense stand-offs with the NYPD, the protesters took the march toward Union Square from Zuccotti Park. Estimates are always tricky, but there were as few as a couple thousand and as many 5,000 people marching with the crowd before the big march across the bridge.
Tim Pool from We Are the Other 99, who has pretty much been streaming live without stopping since Monday night/Tuesday morning’s police raid, caught it all. He’s building to legend status:
Mayor Michael Bloomberg is trying his best to make sure New Yorkers and the world know the protesters are at fault for all the violence we’ve seen. “Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said that five of the protesters arrested on Thursday have been charged with felony assault and that seven police officers were injured,” the New York Times reported in its live blog.
More images from Wednesday’s “Day of Action”:
S’MORE #OWS STORIES TO KEEP YOU OCCUPIED:
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