If you go out for a drive near , you are likely to see signs and hear cars honking their support for the protesters out along Water Street. Residents started showing up around noon Saturday, and plan to continue their protest until the park closes tonight. As cars drove past honking, the protesters started to chant:
"We are the 99 percent. You are the 99 percent."
The idea, the protesters said, is to raise awareness of corporate greed, and to get the government to listen to the 99 percent middle class and not the 1 percent upper class.
We are here to raise awareness that control is in the hands of the few, not the many," said Jesse Sauer of Toms River, who organized the event. "Right now, the system is failing. We want to get as many people out here as we can, so we can all be heard. We want to make this a continuous event and we want to be out here every day until our voices are heard."
"We can each individually cause a change for the better," said Beverly Miller of Manchester. "I came out here to support the younger people. We are all against corporate greed and corruption, and for fairness and sharing."
Mike Cerrachio of Bayville: "We want to raise awareness about the unemployment rate. I can’t get a job at a big corporation and support myself with minimum wage. I’m worried for my future, and for my family's future."
Jessica Hernandez of New Egypt: "I am against corporate greed, profits over people. We need to have more money going in and less going out.
Rena Amada of Whiting: "I have a few reasons for being here -- education, affordable housing, protecting the environment, and to bring our troops home now. We need to tax the super rich. We want people to go out to the polls on Nov. 8 and vote for the right people."
Gary Lerner of Brick: "We need to change the system that supports the 1 percent, and tax the rich. We need to get big money out of politics."
Michael Plump of Bayville: "We are fighting for the change we voted for. This is an organic grassroots movement. The fact that we are here on Washington Street in Toms River just goes to show that change has already begun. It's really good to see the movement growing in small towns."
Alice Clair Mulligan of Beachwood: "We need jobs, not cuts. Everybody wants the deficit under control. When the veterans come home, they are going to need jobs. Social security and Medicare need to stop being cut. I'm concerned about my grandchildren's future. I think it's important that people get involved in events such as this, and that they go out to vote."
Ken Gaughran of Toms River: Politicians are ignoring the middle class and leaving people behind. We want to bring attention to the corporate greed that is there. People need to protect the 99 percent, not the 1 percent."
Carol Gay of Brick: "We need to end the wars and tax the rich. Bring home the money we are spending overseas on the war. Money needs to be redirected to the people and we need to end corporate greed. We would all have a fair share if the rich were taxed accordingly. We need jobs. We are sick of not being heard. The 99 percent want to be heard. We all live in Everytown, USA. I’m excited that this movement is catching on."
Mike Harney of Toms River: "I think people feel like this is reaffirming them that they are not alone. I really like that we don’t have any actual demands."
Gonzalo Frank of Columbia: "I heard about this movement and I had to come. This is a reaction to the inefficiency being done by our leaders. Politicians are working with the corporations who are funding their campaigns. They are donating millions of dollars to drive out those of us that can only give $5 or $10. As it is, we don't have an equal vote. We need to overrule this."
The movement is growing, as people keep arriving up to show their support for the 99 percent. These residents want their voices to be heard, and as long as they follow the laws they will be allowed to continue. Toms River police sent a patrol officer over just to make sure everything was OK. He informed the crowds that as long as they do not move into the streets, block the sidewalk and clean up after themselves, they are allowed to stay.
According to the Facebook page that has been set up, the movement will continue throughout the weekend, ending today around sunset when Huddy Park closes and will pick back up on Sunday around 1 p.m.