NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — You don’t have to live in New York to be fed up with Wall Street. Now, the “Occupy Wall Street” movement has found its way to Jersey City.
About 100 protesters gathered Thursday afternoon along the waterfront in the city’s financial sector outside Goldman Sachs offices.
Photo Gallery: Occupy Wall Street
Employees who were outside the building before Thursday’s protest began said they had been told not to comment.
1010 WINS’ Al Jones reports the message is spreading
Even though the turnout for the Jersey City protest was small — totaling about 100 people — protester Mike Primo said the message is the same.
“We’re protesting corporation control of our government. We want to take our government back, we want the corporations held accountable and we want them to pay their fair share,” Primo told 1010 WINS’ Al Jones.
Protestor Pat Meany wasn’t disappointed by the turnout, pointing out that demonstrations at Zuccotti Park started out with a few dozen people.
“We’re making a Tea Party look like just a couple of people squawking on a street corner,” Meany said.
What began three weeks ago in Zuccotti Park as a grass-roots protest against excesses on Wall Street has been gaining more and more nationwide attention in recent weeks.
“At first I didn’t believe that it was ever going to get this big, but it’s just the beginning of something bigger,” said Christopher Guerra of Newark.
The latest protests come after Wednesday’s large-scale event in Lower Manhattan, which featured clashes between police and protesters.
New video surfaced showing police clashing with protesters in a night of explosive emotions. The scuffle started after police say demonstrators began spilling over barricades.
With thousands of protesters chanting and yelling, police pressed up against barriers say they were forced to use pepper spray and batons to calm part of the frenzied crowds.
The video is inflammatory but police point out they are allowed to use batons and pepper spray for crowd control purposes. Police arrested 28 people, mostly for disorderly conduct.
Police Commissioner Ray Kelly also commented on the situation Thursday, telling reporters that protesters would be “met with force” if they targeted police officers.
WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb With Mayor Bloomberg
When it comes to Occupy Wall Street, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said this is a city that values people’s right to say what they want to say, but he had a warning.
“There just is a standard of conduct…a line you can’t cross,” said Bloomberg on Thursday.
He said you can’t charge police officers.
A reporter asked, “How concerned are you that the type of skirmishes that happened last night may escalate as this movement continues to grow?”
Bloomberg answered, “I don’t think that it will escalate and I think our police department conducted themselves the way they should. Every cop? I don’t know. There will always be somebody that’s got some piece of footage.”
As for if there is any way to resolve the protests, Bloomberg said, “There’s no leadership, one group that’s leading or whatever. What I can tell you is this is the place where you can protest.”
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