Saturday, July 26, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Books 1, Police State 0

Books 1, Police State 0

If there was ever a victory for the 1st Amendment, this was it:

As myriad court battles pitting the Occupy Wall Street movement against New York City agencies proceed, protesters claimed a victory on Tuesday, based not on how they were treated, but on how their books were mistreated.

The City of New York and Brookfield Properties agreed to pay more than $230,000 to settle a lawsuit filed last year in Federal District Court asserting that books and other property had been damaged or destroyed when the police and sanitation workers cleared an encampment from Zuccotti Park in 2011.

The books, and other items, had been set up in the northeast corner of the park soon after the Occupy protests began in September 2011. Called the People’s Library, the collection included novels and history books.

About 3,600 volumes were removed when the city cleared the park. A suit filed by protesters in February 2012 said only about 1,000 could be recovered.

Even if you totally disagreed with the Occupy Wall Street movement (as I've noticed from past comments that one or two of you might), you must agree that authorities destroying so many books was creepy and smacked of what happens in totalitarian states. This is a small measure of justice, and in 2013 America we'll take any justice we can get.

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Will Bunch
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