|Way to keep things classy, Phoenix occupiers.|
"Legalize Marijuana. Gov. Brewer Has Alzheimers (sic). Lying Whore."
That's what was written on the protest sign that welcomed us to the "Occupy Phoenix" demonstration in downtown Phoenix this afternoon -- and at least that sign was spelled correctly (almost).
There were hippies, teachers, communists, anarchists, stoners, militant black guys, people dressed as cows, people dressed as cops, people with guns, and they all have one thing in common: They're mad as hell, and they're not gonna take it anymore.
What Phoenix's occupiers are mad about varies, depending on whom you ask.
According to Darren Lansing, who was interviewed while shirtless and blowing bubbles, his gripe's with politicians.
"[We've got to] get the money out of the hands of the politicians and back to the public," he tells New Times.
When asked how he plans to do it, Lansing says, "We're doing it right now, man."
Apparently, blowing bubbles is the key to redistributing wealth. Who knew?
On the steps of the old Phoenix City Hall, on the east end of Cesar Chavaz Plaza, speakers screeched through a P.A. system to the 1,000-plus crowd, and at one point, protested corporate greed by asking the crowd to show off their best "jazz hands," which they did.
With everyone pissed off at someone or something, the overall theme of the demonstration was the following: money -- someone's got it, and the occupiers want it. Their plan to get it (aside from hanging out in large urban areas) appears nonexistent.
Police presence was everywhere. Aside from rows of cops that lined the north and south ends of the plaza, plainclothes Phoenix detectives walked amongst the crowd. Although, we didn't see them hassling anyone other than two occupiers with guns on their hips trying to post a giant sign saying "Obama and Bush are War Criminals" on a fence along the west side of the plaza.
"[The police] are ready with their gas masks and everything else," one occupier, who only wished to be identified as "Star," tells New Times.
We didn't see a single gas mask.
With the exception of a militant African-American gentleman, who was screaming in the face of a Hispanic man, the crowd was relatively tame.
Tomorrow, Phoenix police will update us about any mayhem that went down after we left the demonstration. Check back for details. Meantime, enjoy some photos we snapped of the occupiers below.
|That's supposed to say "politician."|
|That's supposed to say "interest."|
|Whatever that means...|
|Just in case the pistols jam.|
|"Fuck the corporate world, bitch." Class, class, class.|
|Our personal favorite.|
|Bovine against corporate greed.|