Protesters Briefly Face Off With Cops During Zuccotti Park Thanksgiving

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Hundreds of protesters and dozens of cops faced off briefly on Thursday afternoon at Zuccotti Park after cops told a group of protesters to stop drumming.

“Why don’t you stop being cops for Thanksgiving?” yelled one protester.

“Why don’t you arrest the drummers in the Thanksgiving parade?” hollered another.

A van rolled up with more officers, but they hung back. The protesters, part of anti-Wall Street movement that has gripped a nation consumed by economic despair, held an impromptu forum and decided to call off the drumming.

The noisy standoff ended, and the protesters returned to their meal digging into turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce as the Occupy Wall Street camp in lower Manhattan celebrated Thanksgiving.

About 500 demonstrators lined up in Zuccotti Park at a rack loaded with meals, served in plastic trays wrapped with brown paper.

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Monica Miller reports

Freddy Snair, of Staten Island, said he’s thankful this holiday for his new Occupy Wall Street family and the dozens of volunteers who have donated food and their time.

“You know I want to thank those people over there because they’re so nice here at Occupy Wall Street even though the movement is not here anymore, the people are still here with their hearts and I respect that,” Snair said.

“So many people have given up so much to come and be a part of the movement because there is really that much dire need for community,” said Megan Hayes, a chef and organizer with the Occupy Wall Street Kitchen in New York. “We decided to take this holiday opportunity to provide just that — community.”

She said some 3,000 meals were distributed.

The movement’s slogan, “We are the 99,” refers to the growing wealth gap between the wealthiest 1 percent of Americans and the remaining 99.

The movement was triggered by the high rate of unemployment and foreclosures, as well as the growing perception that big banks and corporations are not paying their fair share of taxes, yet are taking in huge bonuses while most Americans have seen their incomes drop.

Volunteer Haywood Carey of Chapel Hill, N.C., says restaurants and individual donors prepared the meals.

As the crowd ate, a bongo player and a guitarist played the spiritual “Let it Shine.”

Carey called the celebration a sign of Americans’ shared values, despite the nation’s mixed opinions about the Occupy movement.

He says the “things that bind us together” are greater than the “things that divide.”

Another pair of protesters also brought their instruments and performed cheerful songs for their fellow volunteers.

“The music brings people together and it raises their spirits,” Paul Stein said. “Certainly, we need it all year round, but on Thanksgiving Day, we especially need it today.”

Kent Johnson, 65, a lawyer from Oklahoma City, came by to see the protest while visiting his daughter in Manhattan. He brought a pumpkin pie and an apple pie to donate.

“We wanted to come down and support the Occupy people for Thanksgiving,” Johnson said. “Somebody finally needs to blow the whistle and call attention to the way things work in this country.”

Demonstrators say they are protesting corporate greed and the concentration of wealth in the upper 1 percent of the population.

On Thursday, protester Chris Coon wandered the park in a Santa Claus suit carrying a list of “naughty” people that included former President George W. Bush, former Vice President Dick Cheney and New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

“Bank of America foreclosed on the North Pole, then I flew here in my sleigh and the NYPD towed my sleigh,” said Coon’s “Santa.” “So now I’m here in Zuccotti Park protesting the 1 percent.”

Some said Thursday’s meal was a sign that the Zuccotti Park protesters were there to stay despite the new restrictions on their demonstration.

“The community building that has happened here is central to why this movement has been able to keep up the momentum,” said Nancy Ordover, 45, who works for a nonprofit group. “I think this may be one of those meaningful community moments for many people.”

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • Todd Rundgren

    The official “Occupy Wall Street” theme song…

  • Meme Meyagi

    what is done about 7 million mooslime terrorists living in usa?

  • Todd Rundgren

    “I don’t wanna work. I wanna bang on the drum all day.”

  • Schlomo the Banker Weinsteinbaum

    Someone make these people go away. They’re trying blow the whistle on us.
    GREED is good. Sucking the American people dry is our way of life.

  • Keith G

    What restaurants donated food for thanksgiving to OWS?? I want to know so I don’t ever go to those restaurants ever.

    • Amtracmarine

      It wasn’t all donated. Early yesterday morning NY1 interviewed a resturant owner that said that he was getting paid for his services. They were charging a reduced rate but they were getting paid . The interview ran once at around 7:00am and was thjen replaced with the story talking about donated food.
      The resturant owner said that he was providing 5000 meals and they showed
      people packaging things up. I wonder if any food was donated.

    • robert1234

      Don’t worry, you don’t live anywhere near one. Besides, it would be a real shame to support those who are supporting the health and well being of 99% of Americans. That wold be SO UNREPUBLICAN and anti-1%. Fools comment so many times without thinking. Consider…WHAT IS THANKSGIVING FOR? Guess you can’t remember, huh?

  • steven

    I just saw a picture of a OWS protester, protesting the big box stores / big corporationgs with a STARBUCKS COFFEE IN HAND. Can the dirbaggers get any more hypocritical? I am sure he had a Iphone in his pocket with a jacket made by some poor kid in China earning .02 a day.

    • Meme Meyagi

      perhaps you will swim back to china today

  • ted

    99% of all losers looking for a handout support this movement. You aren’t owed anything in life dirt bags – go out and earn it. Everyone struggles.

    • Amtracmarine

      How can they claim to represent 99%??? I’m not rich but my loans are up to date. I’m not losing my home. I go on vacation every year. I’m retired with a
      pension from the military as well as a 401k and pension from a major company.
      In both cases I was a peon and not an officer. What club can I join?? I’m not a so-called 1%er but I don’t seem to have the beefs of the so-called 99%ers. I’m sure that there are more like me

      • robert1234

        Yes, there are lots of people ignorant of the real world.

  • Andrew Nutra

    I agree with a lot of what the OWS are protesting about BUT unfortunately, unless they get a leader that will lead them, and have some benchmarks to use when achieving their goals, they will always remain nothing but another form of speech. Some people speak, some people blog, some people join political parties, some people occupy a park and play drums all day. It’s so obvious, you ask them what they’re fighting for, what they’re protesting about you’ll get everything from bail outs to the environment, TO BLACK FRIDAY!?!? Is it really all of it? You ask them what their goals are, what the point of all of it is and they’ll cut and paste some article online or a quote from Jon Stewart saying how bad things are, but you’ll never get a straight answer. Drumming and occupying really aren’t a sustainable way of fighting the system. Getting someone’s attention maybe, but you’re just annoying the very same people you’d want or expect to be on your side. Keep drumming, keep threatening, keep occupying. You’ll be heard but you won’t make any wall streeters, bankers, or politicians quake in their boots.

    • liz

      Andrew, I could not agree with you more! Those are my sentiments exactly!
      At this point their actions are putting people OFF and if you had any sympathy for them it is GONE! They have totally LOST their way and LOST their focus!

      • steven

        they never had a way or focus they have always been LOST, they are lazy SOB’s looking for a free ride. I went to school and paid my loans quickly and I am not in the 1%.

      • robert1234

        What world do you live in? Certainly not the real one, where it’s expanding world-wide. Sigh. Ignoring reality is bad for your mental health.

    • robert1234

      Actually, they give very straight answers. VERY. You just choose not to listen. And, in case you haven’t noticed, the 1% are quaking all around the world, governments are falling, people are dying. And you still can’t seem to open your eyes and ears to see and hear. What a pity you’re part of the problem, not the solution.

      • The Realist

        The protesters HAVE NOT defined what “victory” would mean to them. They will never do so, because defining “victory” now means they’d have to acknowledge that victory when it comes – and thus put themselves out of business.

        • robert1234

          Dream on. That you’re incapable of understanding what Occupy is and what it’s about is sufficient to suspect you never will get it. This is not a war, there won’t be a “victory” in a classic war-mongering sense. This is a classic capitalistic conflict where movement is demanded and ultimately agreed on. And, Occupy is not a business. It’s sad you can’t “get it” but some minds are so damaged by “double-think” concepts that they will never understand the concepts currently in play.

  • xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

    Freaking weirdos and misfits and the white girls love the back turkey bone


    The protestors are losers too lazy to look for work. I hope they all freeze to death this winter.

    • robert1234

      Why do you think they are out of work or lazy? that’s not the profile of the average Occupy person. Get with it, guy!

  • Roger Kaputnik

    Several “one percenters” were slaughtered like cows. DISGUSTING:

  • Amtracmarine

    The Adbusters Media Foundation is a Canadian-based not-for-profit, anti-consumerist, pro-environment[1] organization founded in 1989 by Kalle Lasn and Bill Schmalz in Vancouver, British Columbia.Adbusters has launched numerous international campaigns, including Buy Nothing Day, TV Turnoff Week and Occupy Wall Street.
    This is where the clout of OWS is from. These are the backers.

    • robert1234

      You have a point with this post?

  • Losers

    Go home …it thanksgiving idiots. Oh wait, no one will have you…forget it.

  • Why on Thanksgiving?

    The label says: 1% Turkey, 99% Stuffing.

  • Amtracmarine

    Why do these tools insist on antagonizing the Cops??Do you really need the drums?? Check out Egypt,no drums,theatrical skits.goofy masks and no one is buying them turkey. One other point, Egypt is a real Police State. No pepper spray just 7.62×39 ball ammo.

    • robert1234

      Check out Egypt. Some 100 dead so far. NO drums, just bombs, gun, gas, etc. What world do you live in? Why shouldn’t the cops be antagonized? They deserve it, being mostly fascist pigs anyway. They have no business there whatsoever anyway. They are there to draw double time, that’s all, and represent the 1% that sucked up 50% of the wealth of the nation. Occupy is a legitimate capitalist movement seeking to force an equitable distribution of wealth, nothing more, nothing less. All good capitalists.

      • liz

        calling cops facist pigs —– what a disgusting and degenrate remark!!!! You really are LOST, and the NYPD put their lives on the line unfortunately for putz’s like you!

        • robert1234

          Look up the definition of “fascist pigs” and see what you get. Oh, and as for putting their lives on the line for “us”, they are paid VERY well for the hazards they face and their history is what led them to the name “fascist pig”. The remark is neither disgusting nor degenerate. You need to check your words in a dictionary. It’s an accurate description using current vernacular terms, that’s all. When the NYPD figures out who they support, the 1% or the 99%, and start to actually apply the law properly, I’ll reconsider my comment. When they are gassing 87 year old women for the crime of sitting in one spot, they forfeit their right to “nice” terminology. Screw ’em. The NYPD is part of the problem, not the solution. Corrupt, fascist and brutal is the nice description of the NYPD.

  • Huh

    Is Susan Sarandon ok? I feared the worst when I heard the news…

    • Haha

      I’m sure gives a crap about you



  • pugphan

    Today is a national day of thanksgiving, let us cut out the hate, everybody has something for which to be grateful. Eat a toikey, drink a lil, and have some
    pie! smokersodysseycom

  • The Outlier

    Thanksgiving Day, 2011, U.S.A.–I am truly thankful for the Occupy Wall Street movement. It has already done so much for me, for my fellow Americans and for my country. There is now a national dialogue that is focused on an inherent unfairness that has been festering like a cancer in our society. This sickness has manifested in symptoms such as unequal access to our political process, unequal access to health care and educational institutions, disparity of treatment under our legal system, energy, agricultural, transportation and housing that is not sustainable and a labor force that has been taken for granted.

    Although ordinary Americans, like myself, have felt this sickness in our guts, we have been distracted from identifying it for what it is by a political paradigm that pits us against one another, a mainstream media owned by corporations that profit from our distraction and great wealth that until recently had been distributed just evenly enough to avoid mass protest.

    We are no longer distracted! Thank you OWS. [Read more](

    • Amtracmarine


  • X


    • Amtracmarine

      They had to chip in for the turkey that one of the resturants provided.Some one set it up. That means that they aren’t the leaderless group of concerned citizens that they claim to be.

      • robert1234

        THEY don’t claim to be leaderless. Their opposition does. As a matter of fact, OCCUPY has a designated spokesperson, for example. As expected, you’re uniformed as to reality. OCCUPY is a capitalist action seeking equitable financial distribution, a perfectly obvious fact many brain-washed fools seem unable to comprehend.

        • The Realist

          Never mind the “designated spokesperson” – I want to know who Occupy’s TOP EXECUTIVES are and how much they’re being PAID.

          • robert1234

            Yeah, right. It’s so sad you can’t comprehend that this isn’t about money as much as equity, and no one is being paid. And, even if they were, so what? That’s a good capitalistic approach anyway, isn’t it? I guess it would make you more comfortable if that were the case. Either way…Occupy has changed the nature of the discussion world-wide and is a winner no matter what happens from here on out. It’s just so sad that some can’t bend their minds around this simple capitalistic movement by the workers. It’s about equity in wealth distribution, nothing more. Nothing subversive. Nothing even socialistic. It’s a pure capitalistic movement. And it will ultimately win big for the workers and even for you, like it or not.

  • rodney

    Hope the Police kick some A$$

    • robert1234

      Me too! It’s certain the 1% crashed the world economy and they need their butts kicked big time!

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