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Will S17 Reawaken The

Occupy Movement?

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Current Occupy supporters hope S17 events on Sept. 17 will re-ignite enthusiasm for promoting human need over corporate greed as is depicted in this image from Oct. 15, in Phoenix, Ariz.
One Year After Occupation In Zuccotti Park Began, Activities Once Again Are Planned Throughout The World, Including Phoenix

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By John Guzzon
Modern Times Magazine

Sept. 14, 2012 — Last fall, a fire swept the nation, bringing together thousands of Americans who felt their voices were being drowned out by corporate greed and political corruption.

That fire was ignited by a few who decided to occupy Zuccotti Park, a New York City landmark a stone’s throw from Wall Street, on Sept. 17. By Oct. 15, 2011, there were hundreds of kindred Occupy movements across the country and thousands across the globe. But as fall turned to winter, the movement stalled. By spring, there were only a handful of Occupy movements that hadn’t imploded.

A year after the group assembled in Zuccotti Park, however, the Occupy movement is seeking a resurgence this fall, as hundreds of anniversary commemorations are planned throughout the country for Sept. 17 and beyond, including a march and rally at Cesar Chavez Plaza, 201 W. Washington St., Phoenix.

Several hundred are expected at the Phoenix celebration Sept. 17, which will begin at 3:30 p.m. and continue past 7 p.m. The march will stop at several downtown Phoenix landmarks.

“September 17th is the 1-Year Anniversary of the Occupy Wall Street Movement! Join us in Phoenix for S17,” according to Occupy Phoenix. “We don't all have to agree on everything. That's why democracy is fantastic. If you agree that what Wall Street, corporations, corrupted politicians and the 1% are doing right now is wrong, then join us on September 17th!”

Occupy Phoenix is also hoping to restart the local movement with one-year anniversary events commemorating the Oct. 15, 2011 gathering at Cesar Chavez Plaza that drew several thousand people.

A kickoff concert is scheduled for Friday night, Oct. 12, at Aside of Heart, 901 N. 5th Street, Phoenix, beginning at 7 p.m. Bands include The Palms, O'Henry, Sigma, Matt Dunn, the Bathless Bastards, Joe Specs, Rough Tough Dynamite, Vprolific, Some Magical Animal, Fatigo & More. V Masks, Occupy this Album and Occupy flag and stickers will be handed out.

Other activities are planned for the rest of the weekend and for Monday, Oct. 15 although details have yet to be finalized.

For more information, visit the Phoenix S17 Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/events/242840392504347/

Nationally, the center of the Occupy Universe on Sept. 17 will be in New York. At 7 a.m. Sept. 17, thousands are expected to surround the New York Stock Exchange and then scatter to selected intersections and push ecologically sound corporate and governmental policies around Bowling Green Park.

“...we will surround the 1% in a whirling “hurricane” of bodies and call for an end to fossil fuels, for an end to the corporate occupation of the planet, and for the beginning of a just and renewable future. Reverend Billy will emcee and we’ll have some great speakers to rise out of our swirling march. As we circle New York’s first public park, the 99% will remind the 1% that the Commons belong to us all,” according to Occupy Wall Street.

Activities are also planned all day at Zuccotti Park.

For more information, visit http://interoccupy.net/s17nyc/calendar/

Some in the Occupy movement have also targeted Sept. 17 as the beginning of a battle against genetically modified organisms, or GMOs. The process of genetically modifying a food is to raise plants or animals that have had their DNA altered in order to obtain a more desired result for those who grow and sell it. The most controversial of which are crops modified to create their own “pesticide” to discourage certain bugs.

The process of creating a GMO is much like the explanation video of how they made the dinosaurs in Jurassic Park, except that scientists take out unwanted genetic material and substitute other genetic material to solve a production issue.

As a result, the Occupy Monsanto sub-network of the Occupy movement is planning protests for the week of Sept. 17 to 21 throughout the world. Notable locations are St. Louis, home of the Monsanto Corporation, California, where voters will decide if they will label GMOs in November and Argentina, Canada, Germany, India, Philippines, and other countries.

An interactive map with times, dates and locations of the 60 or more protests can be found at http://occupy-monsanto.com/genetic-crimes-unit/

Occupy Monsanto hit the ground running Wednesday when they shut down Monsanto’s Oxnard, Calif. seed distribution facility for about 6 hours.

According to Occupy Monsanto, the Genetics Crime Unit occupied all three shipping and receiving entrances to the facility using, “flashy theatrics including a car with a giant "fish-corn" on top of it and a 6-foot high jail cell complete with someone dressed up like the CEO Hugh Grant of Monsanto inside.”

Eventually, police arrived and nine activists were taken into custody.

"The reason I am occupying Monsanto and willing to put myself at risk of arrest is because Monsanto has genetically engineered food crops to contain novel untested compounds that result in more weed killer sprayed on our food, without informing consumers. Unlike most industrialized countries including every country in Europe, Japan and even China, in America right now there are no labels on our food informing us whether we are eating GMOs or not. We have a right to opt out of this experiment: it's not up to chemical companies what I feed myself and my family.  Monsanto has bought and sold both parties and has handpicked henchmen at FDA and USDA making sure we are kept in the dark. Monsanto is also currently fighting the California Prop 37 GMO labeling initiative that would give consumers the right to know if they are eating GMO foods," said GCU member Ariel Vegosen.

GMOs will be discussed at the Occupy Phoenix march and rally at Cesar Chavez Plaza Sept. 17.

Occupy Monsanto supporters will be meeting in Tucson near the University of Arizona and 4th Ave., Tucson at 3 p.m.

Phoenix supporters will also hold a Silent Bio-hazard Vigil Sept. 19 in front of McDonald's, 223 N. 7th Ave., Phoenix, beginning at 5 p.m.  For more information on this event, visit http://www.facebook.com/events/191877824277848/

John Guzzon is editor of Modern Times Magazine.
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