NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — After 73 Occupy Wall Street protesters were arrested over the weekend, Mayor Michael Bloomberg defended the way police handled the protests at Zuccotti Park Saturday night and quipped when asked why barricades were put back up.

“The barricades are back in Zuccotti Park because people were trying to move in and set up tents, which is not allowed. That’s the only reason you put barricades up. Other questions,” Bloomberg said in response to a reporter’s question in Queens.

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When that reporter persisted with another question about the legality of the barricades, Bloomberg shot back saying “You have a right to protest, you have a right to go in the park, you don’t have don’t have a right to set up tents — end of story.”

Some New York City Council members, meanwhile, are voicing criticism over the police department’s handling of the protests, saying that excessive force was used.

Bloomberg, however, insisted that the NYPD is well-trained and knows how to handle a crowd.

“This police department knows how to control crowds without excessive force and this police department is very well run and…does things the way you’d like it to. I can’t tell you every once in a while, some cop doesn’t go off and do something that’s stupid or something they shouldn’t. We have 35,000 uniformed cops,” Bloomberg said.

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The mayor also had a direct message for protesters, saying “You want to get arrested? We’ll accommodate you, but if you want to express yourself that’s not the best way to express yourself.”

The protesters were back in Zuccotti Park over the weekend to mark the six-month anniversary of the movement. Occupy Wall Street has also called for its supporters to hold a strike on May 1 in protest of arrests.

Do you agree with Mayor Bloomberg’s comments?  Share your thoughts below…

Comments (11)
  1. NYCsewer says:


  2. Gflow says:

    What more would you expect from a reptile and his goon squad.

  3. Barack Obama says:

    I would like to thank the OWS movement and the intelligent people who organized this past weekends march. You are my little minions and I will reward you with a nice spoonful of fresh dog mess right in your mouth

  4. OWS'er says:

    I am so angry that he used force on the protesters. We aren’t doing anything illegal.
    We are simply trying to make the point that if you don’t try hard in school, save your money wisely, and work hard to find a good job that you could end up like us. A bunch of useless morons who are the butt of everyones jokes.

  5. I'll smack you says:

    The police need to smack more of these smelly little punks around

  6. Kevin jackowski says:

    I believe Bloomberg is blind to the truth. God forbid you disagree with him. He will belittle you and treat you like an insect. He acts like your wasting his time when asked a question he doesnt like. excuse us Mr. Mayor for trying to get some clarity and answers. As for the police being excessive. they are always excessive. Sadly even when you catch them on camera they will twist the truth to there liking or quietly pay off the mistake to go away. The people at Zucotti Park are at least fighting for what they feel is wrong. How many people can say that they were there defending there basic Freedoms. HUH? Somewhere along the journey of this great nation we got our basic morlaes and values twisted. we put the all mighty dollar above everything else. People lie,cheat ,steal and worse to get ahead. Every day you pick up the newspaper you read about another politician being caught for robbing the very community they’re suppoae to be helping. but the only help they give is to themselves. How many of you make alot of money but cant remember the last time you gave a homeless person a dollar or more. These same people arethe ones who think they’re good people. well your not…When was the last time you volunteered an hour of your time to help someone in life.?

  7. matt says:

    The mayor said that there have been times where individuals on the police force may have acted inappropriately but this is not one of them. Zucotti park is NOT a campground and the police should continue to enforce the law and NOT allow protesters to set up tents. The big mistake was letting them set up tents last year, one that I am hope the mayor will not make again

  8. CJ says:

    What are they protesting for? I’m still confused how this will benefit anything. Nothing will change, except maybe our taxes as we have to pay for cops overtime. So they are making the cops rich and putting local businesses out of business. Go figure.

  9. robbie says:

    bloomberg is going to change the law again and run for a 4th term as mayor
    a prediction for 2013

  10. robbie says:

    bloomberg is to money wealthy and severly out of touch with what is
    happening in the underbelly of NYC, hopefully 2014 comes sooner than later and we will say goodbye to the bloomberg kelly authorocrats nanny city regime, maybe he can have the Queen appoint him governor
    of Bermuda since that is where he would rather be, but alas he will probably
    change the law and run for a fourth term as mayor and thants when i will have to move outta NYC i could not take 16 years of bloomberg.

  11. hermes says:

    Don’t agree with His HONOR….does he mean it’s ok for any one policeman to use excessive force even though most don’t….and that Goldman needs to be visited and encouraged for their continued lack of honesty…Mike take a moment out and regain your equlibrium….

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