Is Occupy Philly a Man’s World? Sounds like it.

By Tara Murtha
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 7 | Posted Nov. 18, 2011

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PPD spokesman Lt. Evers says he isn’t sure what paperwork the accused could have been showing the bloggers. “We don’t give ‘we dropped the case against you’ paperwork,” says Evers.

Responses of some Occupy supporters are straight out of spin city, too.

First there was the rumor that it was a “fake rape” planted by the city to give an excuse to raid. As evidenced in other cities, such an excuse is unnecessary. Then came questions about if the accused was a transient or a longtime Occupier, another attempt to politically distance Occupy from an assault that may have happened on its watch.

The answer doesn’t matter. The accused’s home address doesn’t change the safety hazard of sleeping in a tent on the Plaza, or Rittenhouse Square, Thomas Paine Plaza or wherever else the next physical incarnation of Occupy may wind up. It wouldn’t matter much to a victim.

It’s unfortunate that Occupy is spinning away from the alleged sexual assault.

Hasn’t the Penn State scandal, unfolding bit by morbid bit in the background, shown exactly how dark things can get when members invested in an organization’s reputation try to rationalize themselves away from the sins of the few?

Perhaps the most cynical response of all has been the attempt to normalize violence within Occupy.

“Rape happens everyday, murders happen everyday, theft happens everyday,” said an Occupy rep during the press conference. “These are not symptoms of the Occupy movement nor are they exclusive to the occupy movement.”

Fair enough. Except, the goal of Occupy was to create a better microcosm.

This rationale was taken to its logical conclusion by an online commenter that posted an elaborate mathematical equation to deduct how many sexual assaults per month an Occupy gathering can “expect.”

It’s sad to think that people optimistic enough to believe that marches and sit-ins can dismantle greed in the hearts and minds of bankers and politicians they’ll never meet think it’s impossible to help the women working every day alongside them to protect themselves.

The alleged assault is still an open investigation.

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Comments 1 - 7 of 7
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1. Matt said... on Nov 18, 2011 at 04:28PM

“What? So, because we can't eliminate ALL violence and injustice from the world we should not cast a critical eye over the systemic corruption? You are right with news articles like this there is little hope.”

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2. Anonymous said... on Nov 18, 2011 at 06:55PM

“No, with articles like this someone is shining a bright light on the hypocrisy that is the Occupy movement. They try to cover up what they don't wish people to know about them.

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3. Occupy Philly Media team said... on Nov 18, 2011 at 07:43PM

“I'd like to say this is all completely false, the fact is that we covered this very soon after it happened on our main media site which is well read, we didn't respond on facebook or twitter because there where technical difficulties that needed to be addressed. Those issues were soon taken care of, so yes there was an interruption in the flow of information through facebook and twitter, however that interruption was mediated by posts on Occupy Philly Media which is the main news outlet for Occupy Philly.

The public should know that there were two article published about that incident in the first 24hrs after it happened.”

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4. Matt said... on Nov 18, 2011 at 08:40PM

“What I was trying to highlight was the inherent, and perhaps deliberate, stupidity in the premise that a messager must be perfect to carry a valuable message. The occupy movement is a conglomeration of different people drawn together by their shared belief that the Global Financial Meltdown was caused by a flawed system and that the system is still deeply flawed, and that there is no will by the lawmakers to tackle the real, fundamental issues. On that point I agree with them.”

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5. Anonymous said... on Nov 18, 2011 at 09:09PM

“What a bunch of dopes.....

Now the Occupy movement has come to quoting facebook posts, tweets, website updates from anonymous faceless people. Shocker, you put a bunch of hippie dopes together without a coherent message, sharing tents in a park with strangers, hating "the man", the police, and the laws that rule our land, and someone is assaulted Nothing to see here, move on people”

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6. Mandy said... on Nov 19, 2011 at 01:41PM

“It's a shame that the Occupy movement is falling victim to the very things they protest. That doesn't make the grievances the movement has been espousing all along insignificant. It does show, however, show that no matter the situation, we, as humans, have something inherent within us to make sure what we're espousing is never shown in a negative light.

With saying that, it's a rookie who would update using the accused as the source for their information.

Occupy media may have been started in order to maintain transparency for the movement, having a fear of the mainstream media that covers them, but this particular incident makes everything far more opaque. Protesters may not want to deal with the police in a matter like this, but they would have far more accurate information into the alleged assault. The accused simply would be speaking to his own benefit.”

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7. Anonymous said... on Nov 21, 2011 at 02:16AM

“Wait, so if someone is accused of rape their side of the story is not allowed to be reported? Guilty until proven innocent? Isn't it standard journalism that folks in the hot seat get their say?”


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