Republican Presidential Candidate Andy Martin will hold a New York news conference Sunday, October 16th to announce he has offered to mediate the Zuccotti Park/Occupy Wall Street conflict. (Andy’s letters are part of this news release.)
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
ANNOUNCEMENT OF NEW YORK PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN NEWS CONFERENCE
ATTENTION NATIONAL AND NEW YORK DAYBOOK/ASSIGNMENT EDITORS
Republican Presidential Candidate Andy Martin offers to mediate Zuccotti Park confrontation
The presidential candidate is a former adjunct professor of law at the City University of New York
(NEW YORK) (October 16, 2011) Corruption-fighting Independent Republican Presidential Candidate Andy Martin will hold a New York City news conference Sunday, October 16th to release his offer to mediate the Zuccotti Park/Occupy Wall Street conflict. His letters follow:
TO RICHARD B. CLARK, BROOKFIELD PROPERTIES
Dear Mr. Clark:
In my capacity as a presidential candidate I have visited Zuccotti Park (“ZP”) on several occasions. I am probably the only quasi public official who has actually spent a night in the park and has firsthand knowledge of the situation.
I would like to offer my assistance as a mediator concerning the future situation because I believe Brookfield Office Properties (“Brookfield”) has been badly advised and acted badly.
First, I did not recognize the ZP where I spent the night in the lurid presentation you provided to Police Commissioner Kelly. Your rhetoric smacked more of the O’Reilly/Hannity extremist portrayals on Fox News.
While even peaceful or placid people can be provoked into violence, the people I saw were overwhelmingly peaceful.
As you are now aware, the confrontational approach backfired. Perhaps you will consider my thoughts on how I can be of assistance in avoiding unnecessary friction.
First, let me be clear that I am offering my services at no cost to either Brookfield or the demonstrators (Occupy Wall Street or “OWS”). I have a great deal of experience in mediating public/private struggles of the type in which you are currently engaged with OWS. Surprisingly, I also have decades of experience in New York City commercial real estate, going back to the opening of my offices at the World Trade Center in 1974 and cooperation with Arlen Realty. I served on the board of Olympic Tower Condominium the first mixed-use building in the city. So I have both private and public interest experience. You need someone with my background to help you negotiate the current situation.
Not only am I familiar with lower Manhattan going back to the opening of my office at the WTC in 1974, I also worship in the neighborhood of ZP and spend a lot of time in the neighborhood.
Second, we don’t find history; history finds us. Quite by accident, Brookfield has found itself at the center of history. You can either embrace history or you can become part of the detritus of history. Good public policy is also good business.
I don’t know how long the OWS episode is going to last, or how it will end (hopefully peacefully). If I were advising you as a private client, I would advise you to take advantage of the historic opportunity to extend an open hand, not a clenched fist. Other merchants in the neighborhood have taken that approach.
Third, I am sure that with mediation and negotiation we could arrive at a reasonable resolution of any public health issues as well as “corporate cleaning” concerns you may have. I must say that due to my status as a writer (see my various blogs) I take careful mental and written notes. What surprised me about ZC when I spent the night there and carefully surveyed the premises was how clean the area was. I did not see any public urination. Unusually for a Republican conservative, I am also a civil rights activist. I was at “Resurrection City” in Washington, DC and that encampment was considerably worse than the conditions at ZC.
I also noticed how overwhelmingly law-abiding the “residents” at ZC were. When the police had to enter the “close” to remove a sexual predator the residents offered no resistance. They were equally concerned with avoiding abusive behavior.
Given the foregoing you can understand how your rhetoric on October 11th was both incendiary and provocative.
I am available to assist you in any way you deem appropriate. Your current approach is not working, and could lead to disastrous consequences. I hope you will consider sensible alternatives.
I have also sent a letter to Commissioner Kelly and I am providing you with a copy, as well as a copy of a news release I am issuing.
TO POLICE COMMISSIONER WILLIAM KELLY
Dear Commissioner Kelly:
I am writing to offer my assistance concerning the situation at Zuccotti Park (“ZP”). I have also sent a letter to Brookfield Properties and am sending you a copy.
After a trip to Viet-Nam in 1968 I landed in Chicago just as the 1968 Democratic National Convention demonstrations were beginning. I lived through that period, the subsequent William Ayers/Bernadine Dohrn “Days of Rage” in Chicago and other episodes of that era. I do not want to see history repeated.
Because I am the only presidential candidate with a national headquarters in New York, although my home is in Illinois, I would like to do what I can to assist you in averting a replay of 1968. Sadly, I think your officers are coming close to losing control. Please allow me to explain.
The ZP/Occupy Wall Street (“OWS”) situation involves three challenges. I will address each in turn.
First, we have what can be either a civil or a criminal dispute. I think you should take the approach that the “occupation” of ZC is initially civil dispute between a property owner and a trespasser. This is true a fortiori because “the public” does have some claim to occupancy of ZP on a 24-hour basis. A judge needs to review the Certificate of Occupancy or other appropriate document that defines those rights. Those “rights” are probably stated in general, not specific, terms that are amenable to judicial construction. “Rights” are in conflict.
If Brookfield Properties wants to go to court, allege a trespass, and obtain a court order, the police would be on much stronger ground than they are in responding to a “letter” from Richard Clark asking your men to act as “muscle” for a private business to conduct “power cleaning.”
There is no necessity and no emergency to justify police action in a matter that could easily be addressed and resolved by the civil courts. Just because a “landlord” and a “tenant” are fighting over occupancy of a premises does not convert a civil dispute into a criminal matter. The police have discretion to act or withhold action, especially where there is no court order to enforce. The fact that you were prepared to send your men into battle on Friday in support of “power cleaning” smacks of mismanagement and abdication of common sense on the part of your department.
The ZP/OWS people are not provoking a breach of the peace, they are overwhelmingly peaceful and law-abiding, and they do not pose a threat to either your officers or Brookfield Properties.
I am the only quasi public official who has actually spent a night at ZC and performed extensive surveillance and evaluation of the security and public health situation. I saw nothing to justify the false, misleading and exaggerated rhetoric of Mr. Clark in his letter to you of October 11th. Mr. Clark may have a future as a commentator on Fox News, but he has no future as an accurate reporter of conditions at ZP.
I urge you to advise Brookfield to consider going to court before any police action, and to obtain a court order. Once the dispute is in court the police will be enforcing a court order, if any, instead of acting as hired agents of a landlord. Flooding the judicial system with “bad” arrests, as took place at the Brooklyn Bridge confrontation, does not serve the interests or either the criminal or civil justice systems.
My second point is that the City’s position has been inconsistent. Initially the Mayor made absurd claim that OWS was “hurting tourism” (ZP has become a world tourist attraction) and causing problems. ZP/OWS is undeniably a nuisance and irritation. But having spent a lot of nights in lower Manhattan during the past several years, I can tell you that there is constant noise from construction, jack hammers, sanitation, etc. That ambient noise (which is also taking place on the periphery of ZP) is a lot worse than anything I heard from the demonstrators during the night (most of them were asleep).
After initially verbally attacking the protesters, a week ago the mayor said they could stay. Confusing.
As for the absurd claim of “overtime,” that remark reflects an inadequate number of officers on duty during the evening to police the city. Lack of adequate numbers is why the city is becoming increasingly dangerous. It is time to advise the mayor and council that there should be no “overtime” problems at night. There should be more than enough, nor fewer than enough, officers on duty. If the presence of a relative handful of officers at ZP strains the department, you are way under-manned.
My third point is that in my opinion your men have become increasingly responsive to nonsensical provocation. It is time for extreme restraint. It is time for both the “white shirts” and “blue shirts” to exercise some of our New York City sense of humor, and let things ride as you maintain public order. (As a CUNY adjunct professor of law in the 1980’s I traveled through the “worst of the worst;” ZP is a picnic compared to the 1980’s.) In my opinion, the current situation is one that calls for a “good cop,” not a “bad cop” approach.
In conclusion, I have offered Brookfield Properties suggestions for a potentially peaceful approach to resolving matters. Mediation and negotiation are the solution, not confrontation. (Your officers have not been confrontational when I was at ZP and I see no reason for that approach to change.)
Please remember that in those memorable words of 1968, we now know “The Whole World Is Watching” New York City in 2011.
Let’s make the city proud, by using common sense and restrain instead of taking action that officials will regret and which will live in infamy.
Please feel free to call if I can be of service.
OCTOBER 16TH NEW YORK NEWS CONFERENCE DETAILS:
Republican Party Presidential Candidate Andy Martin
Republican Presidential Candidate Andy Martin offers to mediate Zuccotti Park confrontation
Zuccotti Park, corner of Liberty Street and Church Street, New York
Sunday, October 16th, 2011, 2:00 P.M.
MEDIA CONTACT: (866) 706-2639 or CELL (917) 664-9329
LINKS TO THIS STORY (cut and paste the entire link below and not just the underlined portion):
ABOUT ANDY: Andy Martin’s family immigrated to Manchester, New Hampshire 100 years ago. His mom was born in Manchester. Growing up, Andy spent summers in New Hampshire. That’s why he’s New Hampshire’s “Favorite Son” presidential candidate in the 2012 presidential primary election.
Today Andy is a legendary New York and Chicago-based muckraker, author, Internet columnist, talk television pioneer, radio talk show host, broadcaster and media critic. Chicago Public Radio calls Andy a “boisterous Internet activist.” The Chicago Tribune calls him “Chicago’s own…political activist.” He has over forty years of background in radio and television. He is the author of “Obama: The Man Behind The Mask” [www.OrangeStatePress.com] and he produced the Internet film “Obama: The Hawaii’ Years” [www.BoycottHawaii.com]. Andy is the Executive Editor and publisher of the “Internet Powerhouse,” http://www.ContrarianCommentary.com. He comments on regional, national and international events with more than four decades of investigative and analytical experience both in the USA and around the world.
Andy has been a leading corruption fighter in Illinois and American politics and courts for over forty years. [www.AndyMartin.com] He is currently sponsoring http://www.AmericaisReadyforReform.com. See also http://www.FirstRespondersOnline.us; http://www.EnglishforAmerica.org
He holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Illinois College of Law and is a former adjunct professor of law at the City University of New York (LaGuardia CC, Bronx CC).
Andy’s columns are also posted at ContrarianCommentary.blogspot.com; ContrarianCommentary.wordpress.com.
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