Senior political analyst David Gergen has posted an editorial at CNN encouraging Republicans to address the Occupy Wall Street protests during the much-anticipated debate being held tonight in Las Vegas. His article really
brings home the government and media’s insistence on ignoring the protests as much as possible. Early on in the movement, we reported the seeming media blackout on the issue, but as the protests have gathered steam and showed remarkable staying power, not to mention spreading all over the nation and even to other countries, the media has grudgingly began to acknowledge the chaos that is unfolding in New York City. However, the media has mostly lambasted the protests for not having a clear goal or a centralized leadership, deeming the protests to be more like a party for unemployed people than a real political statement.
Gergen’s article is absolutely correct. This is an opportunity for the GOP to get on the board by recognizing the discontent in the most public of settings. How should they reply is the next question. Both major political parties want to find a way to capitalize on the movement by somehow sympathizing or putting themselves on the right side of the issues. This is easier said than done, however, because Occupy Wall Street involves so many different demographics, people from all different walks of life, with concerns over a wide spectrum of issues. The mainstream media is right about that: there is no clear goal. There is absolutely no reason to think this is going to stop anytime soon. There is no situation where we can see the possibility of the protesters, and the American people for that matter, being satisfied.
Therein lies the problem. It simply cannot be ignored forever, and so far, everyone from the President to Congress to analysts and talking heads have tried to act as if the protests are just a childish lemonade stand, not to be taken serious. If they have reported on it, they have stuck to the facts rigidly, reporting only the happenings with no editorial insight whatsoever. Our hat’s off to David Gergen for coming through with a real analysis and a call to arms. It’s about time.
So, what do you think? Is it time for someone to open up and acknowledge that there is a problem?