L.A. Times Laments Occupy Protests' Lasting Impact: Restrictions on Protesters

In what appears to be the latest homage to the moribund if not completely defunct Occupy movement, Los Angeles Times writer Frank Shyong chronicled the lasting impact of the movement in a December 7 article, gushing that in its heyday it had “enjoyed widespread popularity, and politicians responded with resolutions of support.” 

Shyong lamented, however, that “as demonstrations wore on and public sentiment shifted, cities got tougher with protesters.” Oddly enough, Shyong failed to note a huge factor in the shifting public sentiment: Occupy camps were plagued with violent crimes, including rape. What's more, on at least one occasion, a child was left abandoned in one of the squalid squatters' camps.

Instead, Shyong focused on the emergence of new ordinances in numerous cities across the nation making it increasingly difficult for future Occupy-style groups to protest.  The primary example was New York City's Zuccotti Park, which, when protesters were allowed to return they faced, “a long list of park rules that changed daily.”  According to the article, New York City police refused to permit entry to the park, “based on violations such as possessing food, musical instruments and yoga mats.”

Nowhere in the article did Mr. Shyong mention the extreme acts of violence that incurred at Occupy protests across the country including a rash of sexual assaults and rapes in Baltimore and New York.  Instead, the Times mentioned how in July, Los Angeles police arrested Occupy protestors drawing on the street with chalk during an Art Walk event on suspicion of vandalism, with the author complaining that, “ though the drawings were about as permanent as sand castles on a beach.”

Shyong lamented the negative impact new regulations on protestors will have on the homeless, saying that people living on the streets will “suffer long after the last Occupy tent comes down.” 

Shyong failed to consider the fact that urban parks are designed for casual recreation and financed by taxpayers for that purpose. Turning an urban park designed for a leisurely stroll and the occasional picnic into a squatters' campground is fundamentally selfish on the part of the protesters. Only briefly was their any mention of the prohibition against camping in parks in Los Angeles, but an exception was made specifically for Occupy Los Angeles, which lasted eight weeks.  Occupy camps quickly became unusable by the general public and posed health and safety hazards to the communities around them, what with increased vermin and disease thanks to the squalid conditions.

Of course, Shyong completely ignored that side of the story.

Jeffrey Meyer
Jeffrey Meyer
Jeffrey Meyer is a News Analyst at the Media Research Center.