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Occupy Baltimore: a historical footnote

It's sad to see a good idea fizzle, and that's what's happened to Occupy Baltimore ("The 1 percent are winning," Sept. 18). But, the movement didn't just "fizzle," it committed suicide.

I never pitched a tent in McKeldin Square. However, I did spend time discussing issues, stood with a homemade "Bring Back Glass-Steagall" sign on the corner of Light and Pratt streets and marched in a "Save Post Office Jobs" picket line.

Occupy Baltimore's inability to communicate is much to blame for its apparent deterioration. No one had a phone number or contact information. There was no central location, other than the McKeldin Square venue. Many of the issues addressed by these folks were important, yet position papers, websites and similar back-up tools were nonexistent.

Soon the McKeldin Square encampment became a nexus for misfits and pseudo-hippies hoping to reinvent the 1960s. Since free food, clothing and other handouts were available, the space also attracted homeless people and vagrants.

At the last "general assembly" I attended (hoping to interest folks with my concerns about surveillance), the Occupiers only wanted to discuss an upcoming protest against the Grand Prix.

Most of the people I met at Occupy Baltimore appeared well educated, dedicated to their cause and articulate. Nevertheless, when it came to basic organizing skills, they were lacking. It's unfortunate a valuable movement with such potential probably will just end up as a footnote to history.

Rosalind Ellis Heid, Baltimore

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