Occupy Wall Street is not an attack on corruption or greed; rather, it is an attack on the American Dream and the principles upon which the United States was founded, a fact that these “99%” do not comprehend. The American Dream is not for all citizens to have free healthcare, free college tuition, to own a home, or to have their own wealth redistributed in “fairness.” The American Dream argues that with hard work, perseverance, and intelligence, an individual has the opportunity to achieve success. Thomas Jefferson wrote, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” He did not write “life, liberty, and the entitlement to happiness.” There will always be the haves and the have-nots in the world, but in America the have-nots have the opportunity to become the haves. This opportunity is what makes the United States like no other nation in the world.
But besides this complete and utter lack of respect for our country, the Occupy Wall Street movement is riddled with hypocrisy. The protesters take pictures with their Canon digital cameras and then log onto their Apple laptops to post pictures to Facebook: these actions speak for themselves.
Everyone should, however, look to the movement’s message, which demands the top 1% pay their fair share and redistribute their wealth to the other 99%. But what they fail to realize is that the rich do pay their fair share of federal taxes: the top 1% pay 38%, the top 5% pay 59%, the top 10% pay 70%, the top 25% pay 86%, and the top 50% pay 97.3%. I’ll do the math for them because most occupiers have majored in impractical subjects in college, but that leaves the lower 50% only paying 2.7% of federal taxes. Occupy Wall Street has also received support from celebrities such as Russell Simmons, Susan Sarandon, Michael Moore, Roseanne Barr, and Kanye West, who all earn at least seven figures and live in lavish mansions. Sarandon even had the gall to arrive at the protest by limo, take a few pictures, and then jet off to Italy. None of the protesters seemed to mind the hypocrisy; they got their media attention.
The movement, like the Black Plague, is spreading; not through rats from Asia, but on the backs and minds of the delusional liberal horde. Occupy Movements have sprung up across the country in the past weeks and now appear to be forming around the globe in cities such as Hong Kong, London, Paris, and Rome. Why is a movement so innately European occurring in the United States? In Europe, where attempts to change the 35-hour work week in France to forty hours are met with violent protest, the majority of youth are lazy and unproductive. In my opinion, the American worker unions actually identify pretty closely with the ideals of Europe’s youth. What the average American must take away from the Occupy Wall Street movement is that the American way of life is currently under attack, and we cannot in good conscience allow for the hard work of the generations who have come before us to be spit on and dragged through the mud. If this is truly representative of the 99%- lazy, entitled, and delusional- then I believe the United States is better off with the values of the 1%.