Recently I visited Occupy Providence. I am not going to be place in this Tough Guise box; I will admit I was rather scared. I was afraid of the unknown that would be down at Occupy. Before this visit I knew nothing about Occupy. I knew they were fight for something but I was unaware of what.
When I arrived on the Occupy campus located in Burnside Park I was surprised to find how dead it was on a Wednesday afternoon around 3. It looked as if it had been deserted. All I could do was look around at all the tents and just all the stuff everywhere. It was as if I had taken a trip back a few decades, it was a surreal moment really. I took a few pictures of the camp. I finally found more people near what seem to look like an information booth. I walked over hesitant to what I might discover.
I arrived at the booth and there stood a friendly woman who introduced herself as Mariah. I asked her the big question first: What is Occupy? She told me it was a “movement to enact social change.” I asked what I guess was an even bigger question: Why are you here? She told me that the middle class is disappearing. She has told me how she had a child and she was worried for her generation; OUR generation. She said things were “unjust” in our society and if “things aren’t fixed” then it will only only get worst. She ensures me thought that “good things are going on down there.”
We got to talking more but she had to take her dog for a walk. I then talked to a girl by the name of “Ping Pong.” She told me Occupy was a “wake up call,” that “things need to change” in our economics. She told me she was from Occupy Boston and once that settled up there she decided to come here to help the good fight.
Mariah came back and continued to tell me what Occupy was to her. She said,” it is relevant everytime you talk about it.” That even though people don’t think that they are helping they are by talking about it. It is about stirring a commotion and wanting change. She talked about how she felt “her rights were being taken away” by the government, and that this was a land created, “by the people, for the people, and now it’s a business.”
I got to know a little more about Mariah. She is a woman in her late thirty’s. She has one kid who is the complete opposite of her, but her child still wants to fight in the Occupy movement too. Mariah does not live in the tents every night. She has a apartment where she lives and goes to Occupy about every day. She has a tent set up just in case though.
Mariah had just points to back up what she was saying. She talked about how organic food is expensive, but the government wants us to live healthy lifestyles, we want to live healthy lifestyles, so why can the rich afford this, but a middle class citizen must get a fast food hamburger for a buck. She talked about “Just Cause” a law passed in MA. This law would keep foreclosed families in their houses if they are unable to pay rent anywhere else, so they do not become homeless. Also she says, “movement =forever.” We must remember that we must always fight for this. There is “no end.” “LOOK AT EVERYTHING.
I told Mariah I had to go because I was legit going to die from being frozen to death. Before I left she gave me her twitter. She is always retweeting things that are happening at Occupy in Providence and across the US. She thanked me for coming down and I told her I really enjoyed her telling me about this movement. I will hopfully visit soon to see how things are down there. To these people this is camp is a family; people who understand what they are fighting for, and fight with them for a better cause.