Occupy Wall Street Organizer: Protest Expands Despite Police Effort to “Silence” Demonstrators

Now in its fourth week, the Occupy Wall Street encampment has attracted thousands of demonstrators who continue to tackle the challenges of self-organizing and building a movement. As their numbers swell and the media debates who they are, the Democracy Now! team packed up our gear and headed to Zuccotti Park in Lower Manhattan to hear people speak for themselves. We first talk to Justin Wedes, an organizer with Occupy Wall Street. He describes how New York City police have arrested people for peacefully demonstrating and exerting their free speech rights. “The reaction has been—and I think the whole world sees it now—that every time that you try to silence peaceful protests, you just get an explosion of new support. And I think that’s what’s happened. And it really bares sort of naked the truth about who the NYPD serve and protect. And if that’s not the people… then we have a problem.”