Occupy protesters rally around wounded Iraq vet

By Terry Collins

Associated Press

Published: Thursday, Oct. 27 2011 8:30 a.m. MDT

He wouldn't give his name — identifying himself only as "Porch," an out-of-work accountant who doesn't agree with the protesters' views — but said that he was there, armed, because he wanted to protect the rights of people to protest.

In Portland, Ore., the protest seems to be at a crossroads. Organizers have been dealing with public drunkenness, fighting and drug abuse for weeks, especially among the homeless who are also in the camp.

Some are floating the idea of relocating it, possibly indoors. Others see that as capitulation.

"I don't know if it would be a good idea. Part of the effectiveness of what's going on here is visibility," protester Justin Neff said. "Though I'd do it if there's a possibility that we'd get seen and noticed. I don't know how that would work indoors."

City officials haven't said what would cause them to forcibly evict the protesters. They said they evaluate the camp daily.

In Baltimore, protesters like Casey McKeel, a member of Occupy Baltimore's legal committee, said he wasn't sure aren't sure what to expect from city officials, noting that some cities have arrested protesters in recent weeks.

"Across the country we're seeing a wide range of reactions," he said. "For now we're hoping the city will work with us."

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake said she is willing to work with them, but they should realize that they are camping out in a city park and that was not its intended use.

"I have absolutely no interest in a violent exchange," she said. "It's not about pitching a tent. It's about getting the work done."

Contributing to this report were Associated Press writers Marcus Wohlsen and AP photographer Marcio Sanchez Oakland; Nigel Duara in Portland, Ore.; Sarah Brumfield in Baltimore, Md.; Verena Dobnik and Samantha Gross in New York; Harry R. Weber, Errin Haines and Jeff Martin in Atlanta; Erica Niedowski in Providence, R.I.; Michael J. Crumb in Des Moines, Iowa; Ben Nuckols in Washington; and Jay Lindsay in Boston.

Get The Deseret News Everywhere

Subscribe

Mobile

RSS