Retired Philadelphia Police Captain Ray Lewis Arrested at OWS, Calls NYPD Rationale ‘a Farce’
Today 200-plus people were arrested before 1:00 p.m. in New York City for participating in peaceful, non-violent protests related to Occupy Wall Street, which has seen perhaps its most trying turn of events in the past week. Among those arrested was retired Philadelphia Police Captain Ray Lewis (pictured above), who said, “All the cops are just workers for the one percent, and they don’t even realize they’re being exploited.”
Ray Lewis, who retired in 2004, has a lot of interesting things to say, and I want you to hear as much of it as possible.
“They complained about the park being dirty,” he said over the OWS Livefeed last night. “Here they are worrying about dirty parks when people are starving to death, where people are freezing, where people are sleeping in subways and they’re concerned about a dirty park. That’s obnoxious, it’s arrogant, it’s ignorant, it’s disgusting.”
What does that say about NYPD’s credibility? This guy did not run the police department of Anytown, USA – he ran the police department in Philadelphia, a city that can only be compared to a few other American cities in terms of size and scope, namely New York.
And that is where the heart of the protest has returned, after switching coasts and residing in Oakland, California for a moment. Not to detract from other occupations, but the mother of them all has returned to pivotal status.
Mayor Bloomberg has taken full responsibility for the NYPD’s actions two days ago. Last night Keith Olberman called for Mayor Bloomberg to resign. What does that say about him, that on national television his resignation is being requested?
To give an idea why Olberman took it to this level, an Associated Press report issued less than an hour ago reports that protesters were “bloodied during the arrests” today. Forget the question of legitimacy, the tactics are wrong.
Peaceful, verbal negotiation is systematically being rejected as a viable tactic in favor of physical aggression.
In another excerpt from a late night (circa 2 a.m.) interview done over OWS Livestream, Ray Lewis said the following about police tactics:
You should, by law, only use force to protect someone’s life or to protect them from being bodily injured. If you’re not protecting somebody’s life or protecting them from bodily injury, there’s no need to use force. And the number one thing that they always have in their favor that they seldom use is negotiation–continue to talk, and talk and talk to people. You have nothing to lose by that. This bullrush–what happened last night is totally uncalled for when they did not use negotiation long enough.
He is referring to the eviction, during which protesters were maimed, their property destroyed, and for what? Cleanliness? That reasoning is an insult to 1st Amendment rights, Mayor Bloomberg.
Today marks two months of Occupy Wall Street, and the authorities have made their position clear. New York City is at fever pitch.
Inform yourself, talk to your friends and family, understand that popular movements in the United States are fundamentally American. “Every generation needs a new revolution.” – Thomas Jefferson.
We skipped a couple generations, but this one has found its revolution in Occupy Everywhere. Next time you hear someone dismiss the Occupy movement as a bunch of hippies, remember Ray Lewis.
If you are thinking about donating to an occupation, organizers of Occupy Wall Street encourage you to donate to other chapters – as it were – since in Manhattan they have already received ample resources.
And for your viewing pleasure, the man himself, Ray Lewis:
And here’s Ray Lewis getting arrested by New York’s finest: