Hunter, your blog was pretty cool. I liked your use of rhetoric, especially all of the quotes from politicians. They were the best strategy you had. I like how you gave background information in the beginning, and your argument points were strong. I was convinced. I didn’t have much of an opinion on the Occupy Movement, but after reading your blog, I have more of an opinion. I believe that it is flawed, and the members of the movement did not think out their tactics in the best way they could have. I also enjoyed your pictures you added at the bottom of the blog. The meme was hilarious, and I think it really appealed to your audience and helped to prove your points. The other picture was funny, and it helped lighten the mood of the blog, and create a good atmosphere. Overall, I enjoyed your blog, and you used great rhetorical strategies to get your points across.
This post is informative but I can’t seem to find your position. I did like the Newt meme though.
I think your information is really good, and the way you present it really draws in the audience. That is something you did really well is that you made it hard for the people to take there eyes away from the page. One thing that you could do better is that you need a little bit more information about the whole topic and then support it. I also think more pictures would do your blog some good, but the ones you have are good.
Public Argument Final Draft
Audience: Progressives and Democrats who have bought into the hype of the Occupy Movement.
In the US, statistics have been collected that prove, from 1979-2007 the highest-income making one percent of the population saw their after-tax income increase by 277%. In stark contrast, 60% of the population in the middle class, incomes increased less than 40% (CBO). Many people in the middle and lower classes were laid off due to the recent economic recession, further fueling the feeling for a need for change among the middle and lower classes. In Zuccotti Park on September 17th, 2011, protestors gathered, protested, and accused the wealthy one percent of the US population of greediness and having more priority in terms of economic fairness. These protests became day to day occurrences here, coining the term, the Occupy Wall Street Protest. When the protests began showing up in other communities around the US, it evolved into the Occupy Movement. With the timely occurrence of the movement, so close to the presidential election, politicians have shown to take notice to the movement. Many politicians have widely varying beliefs about the ethicalness and the legitimacy of the Occupy Movement. For instance, Republicans such as Newt Gingrich, the politician that said, “Go get a job, right after you take a bath” , in absolutely no way support the movement (Street). On the other side of the political spectrum, there are Democrats who routinely show support for the issues brought up by the movement, but never explicitly claim to support the movement. President Obama is one such example. In a speech to Osawatomie, Kan, Democratic President Obama addresses the crowd and says, “Today, thanks to loopholes and shelters, a quarter of all millionaires now pay lower tax rates than millions of you, millions of middle-class families. Some billionaires have a tax rate as low as one percent” (United States). The fact that politicians like Obama will not explicitly express support for the movement speaks to the questionable nature of the Occupy Movement. The Occupy Movement does not represent a progressive movement with the core values many Americans have sought for in a social cause. This is because: the Occupy Movement’s protests are aimed at the wrong people, their agenda is corrupted and the protestors are not unified, and the protestors frequently break the law.
The political and cumulative goal of the Occupy Movement is not completely clear due to the numerous protestors whom put their own spin on the goal, but the most zoomed out scope of their purpose comes down to a combination of three goals. These goals are: to gain as much media coverage as possible, to assign blame to the richest one percent of the population and accuse them with greed, and to cause political change that will cause the government to hit the wealthy one percent with much higher taxes by achieving the two previously listed goals. These premises become evident as one looks at the actions demonstrated by Occupy Movement protestors at protests and also as an avid protestor exclaimed, “…we have an Occupy Chicago, an Occupy L.A., an Occupy Milwaukee, an Occupy Atlanta, an Occupy Tampa. I mean, it’s just—it’s crazy. We have international support from Spain, Greece, Egypt, Tunisia” (Burke). This direct quote shows that at the most fundamental level, protestors obviously want to gain as much support and coverage as possible. This is crucial in the development of the movement; however, unfortunately the protests on Wall Street are inherently directly aimed at the corporate leaders of Wall Street, instead of the politicians in Washington D.C. that may actually be able to help their cause to bear fruit. Furthermore, their third goal is only half-way addressed, solely by the sheer massiveness of the movement; any political unrest caused by the movement only exists through extensive media coverage, because the movement did not focus its energy on Washington D.C. Clearly, the Wall Street protests did not effectively target politicians effectively enough, as no hard political action has been taken to address the protestors’ requests and because many movement encampments across the nation have been shut down by police.
The next self-crippling defect of the Occupy Movement is the fact that the protestors are not unified on a single stance on who or what to address when protesting economic fairness. The movement’s general failure to come together to produce a clear driving force is exemplified by one protestor as he talks about the unity of the protestors and recants, “There are bigger and bigger schisms. Not at the general assembly, but around… I hate to say I’m a purist, but I don’t want Obama’s endorsement, I don’t want his word” (McVeigh). It is truly shocking to see a protestor deny help from President Obama, possibly the most crucial advocate that the movement could ever receive. To make matters worse, protestors starting pressing their own anti-Semitic agendas on the protests, an action that ruined the image of the movement for much of the public eye. In a video of a Wall Street protest, Americans truly see the vial nature of the few anti-Semitic protestors as they chant, “Jews control Wall Street”, “You’re a bum Jew!”, “The small Jewish ethnic population is controlling this country, they have a firm grip on American media, finances…”(Hate). This only further speaks to the politically and ethically scattered motivations of the movement protestors.
The final and perhaps most commonly occurring theme in the movement that really trashes the image of the Occupy Movement is the tendency to resort lawlessness; including violence and public displays defecation that some protestors have demonstrated. These acts show the protestors’ arrogant disregard for the basic rules of decency required to conduct peaceful assembly in America. One scary prospect of protestor violence arose when protestor and Twitter user “Smackema1” tweeted, “We won’t make a difference if we don’t kill a cop or 2” (NewsCore). Another disturbing act committed by one protestor seen in this picture shows the vulgar nature of a protestor attempting to defecate on a police car.(Image below on Blog Wall) (Jeremiah)
The Occupy Movement does not represent a progressive movement with the core values many Americans have sought for in a social cause. This is because: the Occupy Movement’s protests are aimed at the wrong people, their agenda is corrupted and the protestors are not unified, and the protestors frequently break the law. We as Americans must hold ourselves to the crucial values and ethics that set us apart from the rest of the world, the same values laid down by the past generations of great men and women that made this country work.
- Burke, Mike. “Inside Occupy Wall Street: A Tour of Activist Encampment at the Heart of Growing Protest.” Democracy Now! 30 Sept. 2012. Web. 23 Mar. 2012.
2. “Congressional Budget Office.” CBO. Web. 21 Mar. 2012. <http://www.cbo.gov/publication/42729>.
3. Hate at Occupy Wall Street. Youtube. Web. 23 Apr. 2012. <http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=NIlRQCPJcew#!>.
4. Jeremiah, Stefan. Wake Up America. Digital image. Web. 23 Apr. 2012. <http://wwwwakeupamericans-spree.blogspot.com/2011/10/occupy-wall-street-occupier-defecates.html>.
5. McVeigh, Karen. “Wall Street Protesters Divided over Occupy Movement’s Demands.” The Guardian. Guardian News and Media, 18 Oct. 2011. Web. 24 Apr. 2012. <http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/oct/19/occupy-wall-street-protesters-divided>.
6. NewsCore. “New York Police Probe ‘kill a Cop’ Tweet Linked to ‘Occupy Wall Street’ Protests.” Fox News. FOX News Network, 19 Mar. 2012. Web. 20 Mar. 2012.
7. Street:, Reactions To Occupy Wall. “Newt Gingrich On Occupy Wall Street: Protesters Should ‘Get A Job’ And ‘Take A Bath’ (VIDEO).” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 19 Nov. 2011. Web. 21 Mar. 2012.
8. United States. White House. Office of the Press Secretary. The White House. 6 Dec. 2011. Web. 27 Mar. 2012. <http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/12/06/remarks-president-economy-osawatomie-kansas>.