I’m sure if you got close enough you could still smell them, however. They’re fading fast, yet still talking tough.
A solitary protester perched on a railing at the western edge of Zuccotti Park one recent afternoon, holding a handwritten sign which read: “You Can’t Occupy An Idea.”
Behind him, a few dozen people mingled inside what was once the bustling epicenter of the Occupy Wall Street movement – now bereft of the tents, tarps, kitchen and library which many had come to call home.
Since the NYPD’s pre-dawn raid Nov. 15 to clear the demonstrators from the plaza, New York’s boisterous occupation has lacked a central hub and appears to have largely fizzled.
But the scattered protesters and core supporters remain adamant the Occupy Wall Street idea is far from over.
“You don’t have to have a center where people are gathered to continue the movement,” said Kaylee Dedrick, 24, who was pepper-sprayed by NYPD Deputy Inspector Anthony Bologna on Sept. 24 in an incident which sparked global outrage and galvanized mass support for the movement.
“The movement isn’t dead, it’s stronger in terms of organization,” said Harris, 28, who moved to Zuccotti Park in late September and remained through to the end.“We are still having meetings, sending out videos and coordinating our messages,” he added. “We may be smaller in number and scattered out, but we are stronger than ever.”
“You might not see it, but we are here,” said William Scott, 42, a professor from Pittsburgh.
A few blocks away, at Charlotte’s Place on Greenwich St. between Rector and Carlisle Sts., more Occupy meetings were underway Friday.
“There isn’t one central staging point,” said student Amy Lowe, 19, from Harlem, who met with about 40 people inside Charlotte’s Place. “but it’s (the movement) as vibrant as ever.”
I think these folks will also be needing therapy pretty soon.