MEMPHIS — In response to the unprovoked attack by the NYPD on peaceful protesters and the liquidation of the OWS encampment at Zuccotti Park, Occupy Memphis called an emergency General Assembly at 4 a.m. this morning. Alexandra Pusateri said at the General Assembly that she is, “repulsed by the direct infringement on First Amendment rights.”

Meanwhile, Tristan Tran a student and Army veteran said he was up at 4 a.m. helping to organize today’s event because, ” we cannot live in a society of complacency and apathy while others make decisions for us.” Occupy Memphis has been camped out in Civic Center Plaza, located in downtown Memphis, for 30 days.

During the General Assembly, Occupy Memphis decided to call upon all of the people of the Mid-South to rally together today at 5 p.m. in Civic Center Plaza. Representatives from local unions, charitable organizations, churches, and activist organizations like the Memphis Gay and Lesbian Community Center, Workers Interfaith Network, AFSCME, and the CPUSA have been invited to speak at tonight’s rally.

According to their press release, following tonight’s rally, the members of Occupy Memphis will march, “as a tribute to preceding generations who have fought for our rights; the same rights which have been ignored.” Converging on the historic Lorraine Motel (the site of the National Civil Rights Museum), the Memphis 99% will speak out against the continuing, unlawful suppression of people “who strive for political and social change.”

As morning rain taps walls of a tent crowded with five occupiers, Becky Muehling, a member of the media team looks up from her laptop after sending an e-mail alert, “What happened a few hours ago is not right … I want to be here to help. OWS is our family and we need to fight for them.”



James Raines
James Raines

The late James Raines was a life-long union worker, a union organizer with the Communications Workers of America, and a proud member of CWA's Media Guild. Writing articles for People's World from 2011 through 2014, Raines covered the Occupy movement in Memphis, demands for LGBT rights in Tennessee, the struggles of the Nissan workers in Canton, Mississippi, and the protests for justice in Ferguson, Missouri.