Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012

Happy first birthday, Occupy Dayton!


Click to embiggen the above screenshot of
Occupy Dayton’s likes on Facebook
You may know that I “like” Occupy Dayton.

I put “like” in quotes because I actually don’t like them, bless their hearts, but I “like” Occupy Dayton’s page on Facebook. Now although I don’t really like Occupy Dayton, I don’t dislike them—I sympathize with them and their goals—but I think they’re rather silly and ineffectual.

I don’t actually give them a lot of thought—I haven’t blogged about them (and their process-y-ness) since a couple posts last fall. The only reason they came to mind today is that, because I still “like” Occupy Dayton on Facebook, I see their posts, the most recent of which was one today about their planned rally tomorrow on Courthouse Square to commemorate their first rally there exactly a year before.

Unfortunately for Occupy Dayton, not many other people in Dayton think about them either. When I first blogged about Occupy Dayton, last November 11th, 5,325 / 537,602 = 0.991% there were 4,046 people who “liked” them on Facebook. A year later 5,325 people “like” Occupy Dayton on Facebook. That’s growth of 31.6%, but unfortunately 5,325 is still only 0.991% of the 537,602 residents of Montgomery County.

In other words, Occupy Dayton is the 1%. No, not that 1%, but still not the 99% they hoped to represent.


Click to embiggen the above screenshot of Occupy Dayton’s online forum, innundated with SPAM
Their website, not at its original domain of occupydayton.org (which the group lost after some of the processing and bickering they seem to have continued after I blogged about them last year) but rather at the new domain of occupydaytonoh.org, also does not paint a pretty picture. The last post on the home page is dated June 20th, the last General Assembly minutes are from February, and the forum is awash in ads for products I will not name here for fear of drawing unwanted visitors to my site. No one, not even any of the 1% of Daytonians who purport to care about Occupy Dayton, is minding the Occupy Dayton store.

Of course, not being part of the solution, I am part of the problem. I could go to the rally tomorrow, but I won’t. Instead I sit in my easy chair and poke fun at a group made up of earnest, well-intentioned volunteers rather than doing anything constructive myself to try to make a difference. Shame on me!

I’m jaded, and old, I admit. Once I was a newly out 20-something who was a member of Queer Nation Dayton, a group that liked to process and that perhaps did a tiny bit of good but that didn’t last. Perhaps, in some ways, I’ve turned into one of the older fags despised by those of us in Queer Nation back in the day. (But only to a certain extent—I’m still visibly out, I still do some volunteering, and I’m not a member of the Log Cabin Republicans or GOProud.)

Will Occupy Dayton have a second birthday? I wouldn’t bet against it, but I also wouldn’t bet any money that they will either. I will, however, predict that they won’t have many more Facebook “likes” if they don’t change something about what they’re doing.

 
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david@davidlauri.com