Tomorrow is the two-month anniversary of Occupy Wall Street's presence in Lower Manhattan. Despite the loss of its permanent encampment, the movement has ambitious direct action events planned for tomorrow, including a 7:00 a.m. march to shut down the New York Stock Exchange, a 3 p.m. occupation of 16 central subway stations, and a "Festival of Lights" march at 5 p.m. beginning at Foley Square and ending on the Brooklyn Bridge.
According to one of the organizers of the march to the NYSE, which begins at Liberty Square, Mayor Bloomberg's eviction may have galvanized more support for the movement than existed before. "It really upped the ante," Sandra Nurse tells us. "We're expecting a huge turnout and there's a lot of people mobilizing from other occupations who will join us."
Are they taking steps to prepare for a potential violent reaction from the NYPD, because they're directing their focus on one of the most heavily fortified structures in Manhattan? "We're anticipating a really strong police presence, but people will have an opportunity to march along the route under safer circumstances…there's always a risk inherent in civil disobedience." As for whether or not the "People's Bell" that will be rung in lieu of the exchange bell is real or just a metaphor, Nurse says, "It's a real bell. It's not the Liberty Bell or anything, but we will ring a bell."
For Occupy the Subway, demonstrators plan to stand outside the 16 different subway hubs and use the people's mic to have victims of the financial crisis from each borough of the city tell their stories. Afterwards, they will then take their message underground, speaking in the trains, and distributing comics that depict those stories, along with the details of the 5:00 rally at Foley Square. The MTA's Aaron Donovan tells us, "We will be monitoring conditions and working closely with the NYPD to maintain a safe and secure environment for our riders."
That march will see protesters gather "in solidarity with laborers demanding jobs to rebuild this country's infrastructure and economy." Marchers will carry "handheld lights" as they circle City Hall and march over the Brooklyn Bridge, presumably on the pedestrian walkway.
For a complete list of the subway stations that the protesters will the occupying and other details, see the event's website. Check back here for updates tomorrow morning, as we'll be on the scene.