01 October 2011

'Banks got bailed out, we got sold out' on Central Avenue

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.—The Occupy Burque (Albuquerque) action that started at the US Bank office along Central Avenue today drew 200-300 activists, mostly young and culturally diverse, about 2 p.m. The assembly walked along Central to the UNM main campus; chants included “Banks got bailed out, we got sold out.” The group sometimes occupied a bus line, more often the entire lane without incident or police interference, then reversed field and moved east toward Washington Street. Today's demonstration was scheduled until 5 p.m.

A day later (Oct. 2), three additional observations I find encouraging. The action appeared to be organized exclusively through Facebook and to a lesser degree Twitter, allowing organizers to bypass the conventional news media, which is often unresponsive, especially to advance coverage. Second, while most of the people taking part during the 90 minutes or so that I was there appeared to be under the age of 30, persons of all ages participated, including many veteran organizers, who seemed content with having younger activists at the helm. Finally, there were several gestures of support and little opposition or hostility expressed by pedestrians and passers-by.

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