Georgia WAND in the Atlanta Journal Constitution “Occupy Atlanta joins Friday protest, brings movement South”
By Bo Emerson
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Thursday, October 6, 2011
The Occupy Wall Street phenomenon, a movement that has spread from Lower Manhattan to at least 21 cities around the U.S., reaches Atlanta on Friday night during a loosely organized meeting at Woodruff Park downtown.
Calling itself Occupy Atlanta, the local organization will hold an assembly at the park, though an organizer says not to expect bullhorns or chanted slogans. The meeting, said Tim Franzen, is intended to seek a consensus among local members about future plans for social action.
Members of the local group are piggybacking their get-together onto another protest at the park planned by the Georgia Peace and Justice Coalition to mark the 10th anniversary of the war in Afghanistan.
That all-day "Peace Camp" will begin at 8 a.m. Friday morning and will include speakers, workshops and musical performances. A collection of anti-war and faith-based organizations will be represented, including the American Friends Service Committee, the Presbyterian Peacemaking Partnership, the Georgia chapter of Women's Action for New Directions and Iraq Veterans Against the War, according to coordinator Kevin Moran.
Franzen said the Occupy Atlanta representatives plan to hold their assembly at the end of the day, as the planned events are winding down. But while Occupy Atlanta and the Georgia Peace and Justice Coalition share goals, the two groups apparently haven't shared their planning calendars. "These are not coordinated events," said Moran. "They are not hooked up with us."
The peace coalition's goal is to draw attention to the economic costs of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, said Moran. Occupy Atlanta has broader concerns, said Franzen, including opposition to education budget cuts, support of universal health care and outrage over the execution of Troy Davis. "This movement is about reclaiming America from the corporations that have control of the government," said Franzen.
Moran and Franzen expect "hundreds" of people at the events.