Time to end the occupation

A new chapter in the Occupy Nelson camp is about to be written, but it’s still unclear what tone it will take.

A new chapter in the Occupy Nelson camp is about to be written, but it’s still unclear what tone it will take.

Since the local movement to support the massive occupation of Wall Street began in Nelson on October 15, those at the core of the camp have remained committed. For the last month the signs and blue tarps in front of City Hall have become part of the autumn landscape.

All sides are to be commended for the way the last month has played out. For the most part, the campers have been respectful to public property and those who use the White Building. The city has been accommodating and kept the dialogue open while this movement runs its course. The police have been professional and patient with the people, even when the odd hint of trouble has arisen.

When you look around the province and the world at similar encampments, we should be thankful for the tone at the Nelson occupation.

That said, it’s time for the occupation to end. Mayor John Dooley was right when he said the effort in front of City Hall has lost its focus. If the camp resumes after the Remembrance Day ceremony, there will be nothing to gain. In fact, there might be much to lose.

If the goal of the occupation movement worldwide is to shine the spotlight on how bad the banking system in the United States has failed the masses and how corporate greed needs to be bought in check, the message has sunk in. Not many would argue that the direction we were headed has horrible flaws.

The large majority understand it and a continued presence is not required to hammer the point home. If the camp returns, occupiers run the risk that those they have converted will get tired of the message and annoyed by the scene.

It’s time for those at the core of the movement to take their fight within the system. Real change comes from getting involved in local boards, local organizations and local politics. Fight the good fight and change will happen. It may not be immediate, but it will happen. Tarps and tents will not make the world a better place in the long run.

 

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