"Occupy Miami" Invades Bayfront Park Tomorrow: 2003 FTAA Protest All Over Again?
|via Occupy Miami's Facebook|
"Occupy Miami" -- a protest against corporate greed modeled after the two-week sit-in currently clogging Wall Street in New York -- will take over Bayfront Park tomorrow.
But how will our soulless city respond? And will Miami Police bring out the storm troops like they did eight years ago?
According to its Facebook page, "Occupy Miami" protesters will meet at the Torch of Friendship tomorrow in Bayfront Park at 1:30 p.m. to rail against inequality and the corporate takeover of politics.
The movement is modeled after "Occupy Wall Street," which got national media attention last weekend when NYPD maced a group of female protesters:
The real question is how Miami PD will respond to the sight of perhaps thousands of protesters.
After all, Miami's finest went berserk during the 2003 protest against the Free Trade Area of the Americas. The shit was so heavy that we even released our own Protest Survival Guide.
But the cops didn't take our advice. Instead, police chief John Timoney deployed hundreds of SWAT troops who promptly used percussion grenades, tear gas, and rubber bullets. Hundreds of demonstrators were injured and about 230 were arrested.
The protest was a black eye for the Miami, which wasted $23 million in heavy-handed security measures only to have to pay nearly $500,000 ($160K from the city, $300K from the county) in compensation to 20 protesters.
Hopefully, we won't see anything like that tomorrow. Just Chacos, dreadlocks, and calls for justice.
UPDATE: Daniel Lopez, one of the protest's organizers, says he expects a couple hundred people tomorrow but expects the number to grow.
"The plan for bayfront is to meet in person and discuss the 'occupation'. The camp out will begin at a later date," Lopez says. "The police are a concern of mine but we are currently seeking the legal procedures to make this 100% legit. We are a peaceful, non violent moment."
Below, a poster for the protest: