The Occupy Movement is still making headlines, four months after it took root in New York City. But it's only front-page news because of the damage it's been causing, not because of its success. Perhaps that explains the latest sentiment among San Francisco residents who were once on board with Occupy, but are now opposed the anti-big bank movement.
According to a SurveyUSA poll -- which sampled 500 residents in San Francisco -- 32 percent of those who initially supported the Occupy Movement have decided that they don't like what Occupy is doing. What's more, 71 percent say they do not support the movement taking over vacant buildings, like protesters tried to do in Oakland over the weekend, which ended in a violent scene and more than 400 arrests.
Protesters won't be happy to read this: About 33 percent of those surveyed said they didn't think police were being harsh enough, while 28 percent said they were too harsh. About 35 percent said police were handling the protesters just about right.
"People are getting tired of it. It's gone from bad to worse," said David Latterman, a local political consultant. "By and large San Francisco's Occupy went pretty well, meaning it was nonviolent and it wasn't ugly, but when people look across the Bay, they see it's a mess over there."
Like most people in the community, Latterman points the finger at Oakland Mayor Jean Quan, saying her poor judgment and utter mismanagement of Occupy Oakland has hurt the national movement.
Initially, most people bought into the tenets of Occupy -- financial equality -- but now their feelings have been soured by what they are seeing on the news, which is violence in downtown Oakland, anarchists breaking things, and a mayor who has only been successful at "dropping the ball."
"Jean Quan will be most responsible for hurting Occupy across America," Latterman told SF Weekly. "Oakland has done more than any city in America to hurt the Occupy brand."
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