Yesterday, a protest got ugly in the Mission district of San Francisco. They vandalized several independent stores by throwing paint and egging them, they vandalized cars and broke windows.
My friend Andrew and I got into a discussion on this on Twitter about the economic situations that led to this.To me, the extensive vandalism that happened is completely and unforgivably unacceptable. This isn’t the Arab spring here. Tartine is an independent bakery created by a husband and wife team that graduated from CIA and worked really hard to become the best bakery in the USA. They did this while becoming parents, creating a school for kids with motor challenges and writing a cookbook. They are small business owners and employers and pretty much sum up everything that is awesome about America. So it really pisses me off that this was one of the companies that was attacked by the protestors.
I completely emphasize with the Occupy Wall Street movement. I am frustrated that the middle class is disappearing. I am angry that they are considering raising the rates on student loans but not the taxes on the wealthy. But I recognize that I have choices on how to voice my frustrations. I have options to protest or reach out to my political rep. I had options on whether to go to a public vs a private college and to take out loans in the first place. America is far from perfect but I am faced with thousands of choices on how I want to live my life, and we’re lucky for those choices.
But I have no empathy for yesterday’s so-called protestors and their choices. They weaken the Occupy Wall Street movement entirely.