I have had an NYPD-issued press pass twice. In New York City, the press is "credentialed" by the police department, independently of the City, at its discretion. The process is slow and you have to go downtown for quite a while. Both times I have been very careful to play their game. You have to bring published clips, among their required materials, that prove you need to deal with things like "robbery scenes, fires, homicides, train wrecks, bombings, plane crashes, where there are established police or fire lines at the scene." Now I'm by no means a real reporter's reporter, but I succeeded both times by bringing past stories that [...]
It's been quite a morning for Occupy Wall Street, which didn't find out until nearly this morning's deadline that the City was going to back down from evicting the protest for "cleaning." Here's how it all went down for them (and some others too).
Views from above, on Broad Street, at Beaver Street.
"While a couple of witnesses said that officers used pepper spray to clear the streets, Paul J. Browne, the Police Department’s chief spokesman, said that one officer 'possibly' used it." Well, now we're all a "couple of witnesses" to last night, dear Times reporters. Welcome to the modern age! Turns out everyone can see these things now! So I would describe that event as not at all "possibly" and also "indiscriminate baton-beating and macing." (As would the Fox 5 news team, who got it in the face.) It makes it really hard to retain sympathy for New York City's cops, who do a hard job under often [...]
On Saturday I left the Brooklyn Zen Center at about two in the afternoon, went down to the waterfront park with my friend Jacob, and smoked a joint. “We should go check out that Occupy Wall Street thing,” I said.
We walked across the Brooklyn Bridge and at Zuccotti Park we leaned against a railing and watched protesters pick through a heap of discarded signs in a scene reminiscent of the Rainbow Gathering—tattered tarp structures, five-gallon-bucket drum circles, puffs of smoke rising from clusters of people wearing earth tones. One woman in fishnet stockings held a sign that said “You are Loved.” Some signs condemned the lynching of Troy Davis; [...]