• John G. Stackhouse, Jr.

“Occupy ___” . . . Two Years Later

It’s just about two years ago that the Occupy movement occupied the grounds of St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, moving me to write a long post and to engage in a much longer conversation in the Comments afterward.

At the time, I was criticized for, among other things, not appreciating that this inchoate movement was the Beginning of Something Better, and that if I would just have patience, I would see . . . well, something better. I suggested instead that the Occupy movement was in the nature of the case going to amount to nothing—and even worse than nothing: despair that would lead either to burned-out capitulation or bitter violence. What it would not produce was significant social change for the better. Only focused energy, marshalled for the long term and aimed at a particular, well-articulated target, had any hope of making a difference.

So I’m wondering, as another summer ends and “Occupy” seems so quickly to have faded into nostalgia, whether any of my former critics, or anyone else, would like to say, “Aha! You were SO wrong! Here’s what Occupy accomplished!”

Bring it on! Since I was always sympathetic to what I understood to be at least some of the concerns of the Occupy movement, I’d like to be wrong on this one . . .