Another look at Occupiers

Still more notes on The Occupations, which may not be doing much to alter the fabric of American Life, but are doing a helluva job in giving us columnists stuff to write about:

For starters, this memo to the cops: Hey, cops. You might want to remember that just about every protestor out there these days has a cell phone. Just about all these cell phones have cameras. And just about all these cameras can shoot video. So realize that every time you do something oinkish, somebody in the crowd is very likely going to record your actions and make you the next Viral Vidiot. Indeed, it’s now pretty much a given. Oink at your peril.

As for the Occupations around America, it’s getting obvious that their batteries are getting kinda low. People are getting cold, for one thing, and probably tired, too. And it’s kind of a drag when the guy in the next tent over is a madman who’s spent the last three months living in a doorway. It may be time for a spark of some kind.

So when is one of the Occupations gonna finally take it to the next level and rock the planet and the ever-so-smug 1 percent with its very own hand made, homemade guillotine? Wouldn’t this be a hilarious yet snarky piece of ominous street theater? Wouldn’t a guillotine guarantee your Occupation a healthy chunk of air time on just about every show on every cable news channel? Look at all the positives that would come along with a display of this still powerful symbol from the late 18th century. First, it gives off just enough of a whiff of malice to the fat cats and plutocrats, much more so than any shirt that says, “Eat the Rich.” And it delivers its fun yet mischievous message in a stylish, ballsy, historically significant package. Ninety-nine percenters could have a fine old time spending an afternoon showing off their old school “basket-filler” by whacking watermelons and passing out the “people’s chunks” to hungry onlookers. And in so doing, they’d be providing video that’s just begging to go massively viral, thrusting any Occupation wacky enough to produce such a stunt instantly to the front of the planetary pack.

Finally, a San Francisco Chronicle reader made an excellent comment recently. “So all the Occupations in Santa Rosa and Salt Lake and Saginaw are just dandy. Now, how about you folks Occupy Congress? Pitch tents on the steps of the Capitol and stay there until you force the Republicans to agree to some tax some millionaires.”

I must admit, that strikes me as the evolution of the revolution. Would something politically significant actually get done? Probably not. It’s hard to imagine Boehner and Cantor responding in a non-putzy fashion. But at least you’re gonna get a lot more prime time with an Occupation of Congress than you’ll get with an Occupation of Yuba City.

Just don’t forget the guillotine.