THE Occupy movement has had a bad press for being too posh.
Occupy Wall Street is about poor little rich kids.
Occupy London Stock Exchange has far too many well-dressed people in its encampment at St Paul’s. Among their numbers, the Daily Mail felt obliged to tell us, are a poet, an extra from Downton Abbey, and quite a few mothers.
In London tomorrow there is Occupy Half Term at which families are invited to spend the school holidays occupying, attending workshops, and practising direct democracy. It has been organised by a “a mum with a mortgage who is sympathetic to Occupy London”. Mums with a Mortgage could be just the middle-class reinforcement the protest movement needs.
It is easy for elements of the media to scorn action by anarchists, hippies, looney left-wingers, and young people with tattoos and metal facial adornments. These elements will ignore Mums with a Mortgage at their peril.
The recession affects people of all classes, with the possible exception of rich tax-dodgers, bankers on bonuses and politicians on expenses. Let there be a diversity of action groups.
Members of Women in Jaeger Skirts Against Poverty could easily get the 66 bus from Clarkston into Glasgow and show solidarity with the 50 or so tent dwellers currently occupying George Square. They will be able to join forces with other potential movements such as Coffee Drinkers Against Globalisation But Who Still Occasionally Pop into Starbucks. Or as it’s known for short, the Skinny Latté Front.
The fact that some people still have disposable income and like shopping or getting together with friends over a small lunch does not invalidate their right to protest. They should be careful, however, with slogans they chant. Try to avoid: “What do we want? Help for the needy not the greedy! When do want it? Preferably before people go on their ski holiday in Klosters but definitely in time for the Christmas break!”
I have set up my own working-class phalanx of dissent called Men in Bunnets Who Have Had It Up to Here. We are allied to Wee Wummin Wi Shopping Bags Who Don’t Know What the World Is Coming To.
I hope, in the cold nights of occupation ahead, there’s plenty of hot soup, tea and scones.
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