The Truth About Spending All Night And Day Protesting Wall Street

Julia La RocheClusterstock’s Julia La Roche at Occupy Wall Street

Photo: Business Insider

What I wrote about the Occupy Wall Street demonstrators last week infuriated a lot of people — and for an obvious reason too.So I decided to spend more time in their Zuccotti Park encampment, this time not on the periphery, but as an insider, to see what it’s really like. (I did not stay the entire night at Occupy Wall Street since it was raining and I live near the park.)

Af first glance, the Occupy Wall Streeters appear to be a disheveled rag-tag army of hippie civil disobedients that don’t really have a clear message.

But don’t let their appearance fool you. 

There are tons of highly educated people that understandably feel angry at big banks and the government. 

While the group’s message continues to remain vague, what’s clear now is they are starting to organise and they are definitely garnering attention.

In the evening, Occupy Wall Streeters convene for general assembly.

Occupy Wall Street doesn't have an official agenda, but they mostly express anti-corporate sentiments.

This lady joined in because she had her house foreclosed upon.

Occupy Wall Streeters are divided into different committees. They have a legal team and a medical team on site.

Occupy Wall Street has a food committee. They rely on food donations.

They've had tons of pizza donations with mostly vegetarian toppings from people calling in orders at Liberato's. It's really good.

The park sidewalks are peppered with cardboard signs mostly made of used pizza boxes.

There are dogs staying in the camp. Here's a kennel that's decorated for the billionaire Koch brothers.

There's been a lot of complaining about the lack of media coverage.

Film director Michael Moore stopped by and did a hit for MSNBC. He supports the movement and condemned the police response.

This girl told us her friends are wearing clown noses because police would be less likely to lash out at them.

There's a lot of music and dancing. Drums and tom-toms are the soundtrack to the protest.

They also had an impromptu talent show. This guy appeared to be the MC of the show.

Not everyone stays the night to camp out. A bunch of people did sleep in the rain though.

In the morning Occupy Wall Streeters had hot coffee and breakfast available.

Some try to get some extra sleep before the Opening Bell march.

Protestors have been going to McDonald's to use the facilities. Burger King reportedly hasn't been so welcoming.

They leave the Zuccotti Park to march for Opening Bell. They also march for the Closing Bell.

This sergeant warned those marching to stay on the sidewalks.

The march continued around the Financial District and into Tribeca.

Here's a shot of one of the protestors marching.

There's even a carpeted area with a futon and chairs that serves as a child centre during the day.

This is the media centre. It's powered by a generator and access to the media hub is limited.

There's a medical centre in the camp. There's also a legal team that counsels those who've been arrested.

Princeton University professor Dr. Cornel West joined the protestors.

WikiLeaks stopped by to show their support for the movement. They were asked to move their truck a few times though.

There were young children protesting too. This girl's mother said she wanted to expose her this sort of thing at a young age.

This woman's costume was extremely popular.

In the afternoon, the protestors did their Closing Bell march toward Battery Park during a thunderstorm.

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