The recent rash of violent, viral videos from Occupy Wall Street protests has cauth the ire of Presidential candidate and Lexington resident Jill Stein, who on Wednesday released a statement condemning recent police actions against the OWS movement.
"The aggressive, needless police actions across the country against Occupy Wall Street (OWS) are an assault on civil liberties and an effort to suppress a much needed movement for economic justice and democracy," said Stein, a Green Party member and past candidate in Massachusetts elections. "The courageous protesters who have stood up to intimidation by lethal force are standing up for us all."
In the statement, Stein called upon mayors in occupied cities to "follow the example of Green Party Mayor Gayle McLaughlin of Richmond, Cali., who welcomed the local occupation" and contrasts that with videos and reports from Wall Street, UC Berkley and Occupy Oakland, which she says show public officials are "suppressing rights of free speech, freedom of assembly and freedom of the press."
"The use of police in full riot gear with helicopters buzzing overhead to arrest peaceful and largely sleeping protesters is frightening commentary on the militarization of state and municipal security," Stein said i nthe statement. "Unprovoked police violence against citizens practicing peaceful civil disobedience - clearly documented on videos gone viral on the Internet - is deeply alarming."
Wednesday was not the first time Stein has connected the Green Party and Occupy Movement since setting her sights on the White House.
In her announcement remarks last month, Stein introduced a and pointed to the Occupy Movement as an example of standing up for the 99 percent.
"In fact, young people are not only not giving up, they’re standing up like never before - – as we see so clearly in Zuccotti Square and Freedom Square and Grant Park and Dewey Square and hundreds of other Occupy encampments around the country," Stein said Oct. 24 at the State House. "And just like in the civil rights movement, when the young people stand up, the nation changes forever."