Mainstream Media Continues to Disappoint
By Aliana Bazara
Overall, May Day was a success! Our numbers were strong throughout the day, we fed tons of people with breakfast, lunch, and dinner, (200 served at breakfast), we had music and dancing, community conversations, and 3 marches.
Reflecting on the vandalism: Arguably, what hurt us the most was not the property destruction itself, but the mainstream media sensationalizing it. Our entire event (breakfast, lunch, speakout, music, and marches included) lasted 9 hours. The property destruction lasted 20 minutes. Yet the focus of the 10:00 news and the cover of The Seattle Times was the destruction.
It comes as no surprise that there was vandalism on May Day. It happened all across the country. Historically, that precedent has already been set. What is surprising is that there was so little of it. It was done and over within 20 minutes, and failed to resurface again for the rest of the day.
What is equally surprising is the lack of police intervention while the vandalism was taking place. No immediate actions were taken, nor were any immediate arrests made by SPD, despite the acts being committed in broad daylight with hundreds of people around. I realize SPD’s desire to be cautious due to recent misconduct allegations against them but they still have a duty to protect. Instead, what I noticed was a curious lack of police intervention during the minutes when vandalism erupted.
I have come to accept that this movement attracts all types of people- including those that throw rocks and break windows. The fringe element was there on Tuesday, but that’s all it was- a fringe element. A small fraction of people creating havoc for a small fraction of the day.
I wish there was some way we could get the general public to see past the mainstream news, whose only purpose these days seems to be to instill fear in people and sell commercials. I wish they could see the level of commitment, passion, and love for the world and one another, that is present within Occupy.