It doesn't matter what the cause is, from calls for violent Marxist revolutions to the small government Tea Party rallies, there is something about public demonstrations that just turn me off.
They're loud, clumsy and mindless and they praise crude signs and annoying chants. Instead of the marketplace of ideas, protests are a monopoly of conformity. As Jean-Francois Revel said:
A human group transforms itself into a crowd when it suddenly responds to a suggestion rather than to reasoning, to an image rather than to an idea, to an affirmation rather than to proof, to the repetition of a phrase rather than to arguments, to prestige rather than to competence.Enter Occupy Wall Street, a completely generic protest that has no real goals and is now trying to shoehorn every broad liberal talking point under a common banner. The idea of deciding what a protest is about after it's started isn't revolutionary, it's moronic.
This is the perfect example of the sad state of modern protests - self-righteous feel-good antics that have little chance of accomplishment.
If the goal is to change the world in a targeted way, than public protests are a poor investment of time and money. If instead the goal is to develop an undeserved sense of accomplishment, then by all means, paint those brown cardboard signs and repeat those slogans.