Over the past 24 days, New Yorkers of all walks of life have taken part in the Occupy Wall Street protest near Manhattan’s Financial District. On Monday, we caught up with a trader walking through the protest encampment. “I like the fact that everybody is organizing from a grassroots level. And, you know, I think that the people that have had all the power need to even it out a bit and let these people speak their voice,” said Joe Mancini. “This is a real democracy. This is what it means to be an American in a true sense of being in a democratic place.” [includes rush transcript]
JOE MANCINI: Hi. My name is Joe Mancini, and I’m not at the liberty to say exactly where I work, but I work at a investment bank.
AMY GOODMAN: And so, what are you doing here?
JOE MANCINI: I’m here in support of the occupation down here. I think a lot of things need to change in the system that we live in. I like the fact that everybody is organizing from a grassroots level. And, you know, I think that the people that have had all the power need to even it out a bit and let these people speak their voice. This is a real democracy. This is what it means to be an American in a true sense of being in a democratic place.
AMY GOODMAN: What are they saying in your bank?
JOE MANCINI: The usual sort of Fox News-type approach: you know, “These people are a bunch of wackos. Bunch of hippies down here. Took me an hour and a half to get home; you know, I had to walk by all these crazy people, all these pot smokers.” But, you know, I’ve been down here, and I’ve talked to a lot of educated people, and that’s definitely not the case. It kind of makes it laughable. You know, I like hearing it. I know they’re afraid. I know that when people live in fear, they tend to talk about those things and react in that way. They get defensive. So, you know, people are talking about it, and it’s all over the business stuff. It’s all over CNBC. It’s all over Fox Business Channel. You know, it’s interesting to see Fox Business News and Fox, because they’re kind of—they don’t know what to do, really. They’re sort of like for the people, against corporation, now we’re for corporations. So, it’s kind of nice to see this occupation happening.