The global movement reached Montréal’s Victoria Square this weekend, though the numbers paled in comparison to OWS’s the resolve for change was just as present.
A spirited atmosphere
Occupy Montréal had all the makings of a home-grown protest without detracting from the spirit of the Occupy movement. From adults, teens to children, people came out it droves, many with diverging agendas but all with the same sense of dissatisfaction with the status qou. The day was filled with a generally light and communal vibe, with some comedic relief in the form of wedding photos be taken outside the World Trade Center of Montréal.
The protest reached a reported 1000 people though many arrived fashionably late. The protest which was slated to begin at 9:30 picked up considerably as the day progressed, though the occupy faithful were out pitching their tents in the early morning.
The weather had all the appropriate makings of martyrdom with high winds and rain but nevertheless the occupiers remained present, vocal, and for the most part content and focused. The interior of the square housed several tents, both professional looking and discernibly makeshift. There was a web-like poster in the interior of the square that required more time to unravel than some observers cared to give.
A quick walk around the perimeter of the square and the police presence could be felt, with cops stationed in Victoria Square metro and in an adjoining parking lot on Rue St. Jacques. Though their presence increased along with that of the protesters, the police were for the most part the footnote of a much larger event.
Many Voices One Cause
At 3PM a General Assembly, modeled after those held in New York City’s Liberty Plaza. The meeting lasted two hours. They addressed a variety of issues, from housekeeping to broader ideological notions of the global economic structure. After the meeting concluded the protest took to the streets, peacefully walking through St. Catherine Street with the aid of the Montréal police.
It is worth noting that the protest drew an uncharacteristically large amount of voyeurs. Many people would enter and exit the inner square, fulfilling their curiosity and in many ways adding intrigue to a movement that is largely regarded in the mainstream media as being incomprehensible.