More than two weeks in, protesters in New York's financial district are showing no signs of slowing despite increased arrests and push back from police. What was once a group of just a dozen or so college students, Occupy Wall Street has grown into a nationwide movement as similar protests sprung up from Boston to Los Angeles, The Associated Press reports.
The movement hit what appeared to be a significant snag over the weekend when around 700 people were arrested for blocking traffic while trying to cross the Brooklyn Bridge. The arrests haven't dampened the group's spirits though, and neither has the fact that they lack no clear objective and are instead speaking out against everything from corporate greed to climate change.
"We're not here to take down Wall Street. It's not poor against rich," demonstrator Jackie Fellner told the AP. "It's about big money dictating which politicians get elected and what programs get funded."
Much of the demonstrations have been peaceful, with most of the protesters staying in a Zuccotti Park. However, there have been some clashes with police in recent days, including on September 24 when video surfaced of a New York police officer spraying a group of women behind a barricade with pepper spray.
The NYPD has maintained that it will allow the protests to go on as long provided they are peaceful.
"As always, if it is a lawful demonstration, we help facilitate and if they break the law we arrest them," NYPD spokesperson Paul Browne told Bloomberg Businessweek .
In Boston, similar protests have been going on for several days and on Friday they crowd size grew to about 1,000 people, The Boston Globe reports.