By James PetersenKVAL
, February 18, 2013
EUGENE, Ore. - Though the Occupy Movement has faded from the daily public spotlight, the protests have not stopped.
Every Friday afternoon, men and women of all ages meet on a sidewalk in front of a Bank of America branch in downtown Eugene with homemade signs to protest the actions of Wall Street and the biggest banks of the nation.
“What we’re doing is making the public aware of the indiscretions of these banks,” a protestor named Reagan said. “It’s about letting the people know they’re being taken advantage of and have the ability to take the power back from the corporations.”
Since the inception of the Occupy Movement in late 2011, protests, sit-ins and camp outs have occurred across the United States and have spread to every continent except for Antarctica. Locally, Occupy Eugene has staged protests of banks, police actions, the treatment of homeless citizens, the use of GMOs, and many more issues that affect both Oregonians and people worldwide.
This particular weekly protest targets the biggest banks in the United States, including Bank of America, Chase, Wells Fargo, U.S. Bank and KeyBank. “Our issue is that through their insatiable greed, they have brought real suffering down on the people, all in the name of profit,” Reagan explained. “The ability to use money to make more money off the American taxpayer is the worst kind of economic injustice you can have.”
These sentiments aren’t new to followers of the Occupy Movement, and are shown on the signs of the eight protestors at the event. Handwritten block letters tell passing drivers, “You are not a loan/ Resist debt slavery” and “Who would Jesus foreclose on?” The adage of “We are the 99%” is also prevalent, as well as calls to action to move money and follow the Occupy Movement on social media.
Though the protestors aren’t always the same individuals, the protest has been staged weekly since April 2012, and no end seems to be in sight. The men and women have remained through rain, freezing temperatures and darkness, and haven’t been dissuaded from their beliefs and their mission. As one protestor put it, “Until the social inequality brought on by this corporatist system is eased, we’ll be out here doing this.”'