The protesters arrived in the Wall Street neighborhood on Wednesday night carrying bedrolls, quilts and blankets. They spread pieces of cardboard on the sidewalk on Nassau Street. As a handful of police officers stood nearby, the protesters made signs with anticorporate slogans.
“It’s really exciting to see people actually occupying Wall Street,” said Embi Weitzel, 25, a nanny from Colorado, who came with earplugs, apples, a flashlight, a bottle of water and an orange sleeping bag. “Finally, here we are, in the belly of the beast.”
For the third consecutive night, Occupy Wall Street protesters used a tactic on Wednesday that many of them hope will emerge as a replacement for their encampment at Zuccotti Park, which was disbanded by the police in November.
Norman Siegel, a prominent civil rights lawyer, said a decision by a federal court in Manhattan arising from a lawsuit in 2000 allowed the protesters to sleep on sidewalks as long as they do not block doorways and take up no more than half the sidewalk.
The protesters first cited that ruling last week while sleeping outside bank branches near Union Square, but said this week that they wanted so-called sleep-outs to occur nightly around the New York Stock Exchange.
An organizer, Austin Guest, said protesters had scheduled such events for Friday night at four other spots, each related to the Occupy Wall Street message that the financial system benefits the rich and corporations at the expense of ordinary citizens.
The protesters’ presence in Lower Manhattan has drawn the attention of the police, but officers have not dislodged them.
keyboard shortcuts: V vote up article J next comment K previous comment