ENDGAME: Did The Homeless Sink #OccupyPhilly?



PHILADELPHIA WEEKLY: An Occupier named Dan, waiting at the edges of the Occupy camp on Monday night for the GA to begin, says that his patience quickly wore thin—he says he camped at Dilworth for the first two weeks of Occupy Philly until homeless people made things “sketchy.” “I feel bad for people who are homeless, but nobody really wants to admit what happened,” he says. “The homeless basically ruined Occupy Philly. They took it over and brought a lot of negativity down on us, and they pushed out a lot of the original Occupy Philly people that didn’t want to deal with all of that or be responsible for all of their personal shit that had nothing to do with what we were out here fighting for.” MORE

RELATED: Police had no plans to evict anyone, Chief Inspector Joseph Sullivan said about 6:30 p.m. “We look forward to working with Occupy Philadelphia and a resolution of the problem. Confrontation is never good. Anyone who is being fair would have to say that there is a big difference between the police reaction to Occupy Philadelphia than in other cities,” he said. “I definitely, definitely want to really stress that the vast majority of people participating in this movement have been cooperative, nonviolent, and very respectful,” he said. MORE

RELATED: Pre-Occupied

RELATED: This is the home of the Metzger family. Arielle,15. Her brother Austin, 13. Their mother died when they were very young. Their dad, Tom, is a carpenter. And, he’s been looking for work ever since Florida’s construction industry collapsed. When foreclosure took their house, he bought the truck on Craigslist with his last thousand dollars. Tom’s a little camera shy – thought we ought to talk to the kids – and it didn’t take long to see why.

Pelley: How long have you been living in this truck?

Arielle Metzger: About five months.

Pelley: What’s that like?

Arielle Metzger: It’s an adventure.

Austin Metzger: That’s how we see it.

Pelley: When kids at school ask you where you live, what do you tell ’em?

Austin Metzger: When they see the truck they ask me if I live in it, and when I hesitate they kinda realize. And they say they won’t tell anybody.

Arielle Metzger: Yeah it’s not really that much an embarrassment. I mean, it’s only life. You do what you need to do, right? It’s life for a lot of folks.

The number of kids in poverty in America is pushing toward 25 percent. One out of four. Austin and Ariel usually get cleaned up for school at gas stations. They find its best to go to different ones every day so the managers don’t get sore. Before the bell, they blend in with more than 1,100 other homeless students in the Seminole County schools. At Casselberry School we met 15 kids who’d been living in cars. MORE

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