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Occupy Movement Taking Root in Brookings

November 12, 2011, 10:09 PM by Hailey Higgins

Occupy Movement Taking Root in Brookings
BROOKINGS, SD - From Wall Street to Oakland, California to South Dakota, the Occupy movement is starting to take shape in KELOLAND.
While Occupy Sioux Falls has held protests, it's now beginning to take root in Brookings after their first official meeting Saturday.

Farmers, writers, students, economists and even pastors sit together planning to make Brookings and the country a better place to live. These people are joined together, frustrated with the direction the country is headed.

"We had no idea what to expect, but we kind of felt if we got a dozen, 15, we would be doing pretty well," Phyllis Cole-Dai said.

More than 25 people from all ages and walks of life say they're fed up with corporate greed and mismanaged government.

"I hope to get this country back to what it was founded upon, freedom for everybody, equal opportunity for everybody, government by the people for the people," Richard Seese said.

"I think in Brookings it's to improve Brookings, to work with other people and give everyone a chance, make things happen the right ways and open it up so people feel empowered," Russell Stubbles said. "You want to educate, you want to inform and then you want to empower."

Currently, the group is considering an initiative urging people to buy local Christmas gifts to send a message to large corporations, as well as improve the local economy.

"I think the people of Brookings will like it," Stubbles said. "I think the people who came tonight are good people with good ideas. All I see is a better future for Brookings."

And while the group is just getting started, members say they're refusing to back down.

"We have to be prepared for a long struggle and we have to come out of that with a lot of conviction and a lot of joy and a lot of organization and creativity," Cole-Dai said.

Occupy Brookings plans to hold another meeting next Saturday as they hope to keep their momentum going strong.

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