■ If you go:
■ Information sharing and gathering 2 p.m. Saturday at Cambier Park, 698 Sixth Ave South, Naples.
■ Rally scheduled for 5 p.m. across from Cambier Park at Naples City Hall , 735 Eighth Street South followed by a march at 5:10 p.m. from City Hall to Fifth Avenue South.
■ Contact: Karen Dwyer, firstname.lastname@example.org, (239) 206-2661.
■ Follow the Occupy Together movement on Twitter, connect on Facebook with several Occupy Naples pages or sign up at meetup.com/occupytogether/Naples-FL/
A protest movement that started on Wall Street is heading to “Main Streets” across the United States — including a march planned for Saturday afternoon in downtown Naples.
The movement, Occupy Wall Street, hit Fort Myers last Saturday and is heading south with the Occupy Naples protest. Some plan to gather as early as 2 p.m. at Cambier Park with a main rally scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. across the street in front of City Hall.
Participants have a wide variety of desires for government change, but one thing unites them all, said Karen Dwyer, 53 of North Naples.
“I think that most people are really angry that our government’s politicians are being run by corporations for profit, but everyone has their own reason, their own demands,” Dwyer said. “We vary a lot there, but we’re together that we want to get the top 1 percent, who have bought our politicians, out of power.”
It’s not a war against all wealth, Dwyer said.
“Everyone in Naples, I think, is in the 99 percent,” said Dwyer, a former Collier County school teacher who said she left the job by choice. “We’re not talking the millionaires. We’re talking the Fortune 400 — there are a lot of names for them, but the really top 1 percent, which is kind of symbolized by Wall Street. Big money.”
Flyers and invitations from Dwyer state more specifics, but not all the people involved in the nationwide movement would make the same statements, she acknowledged.
It’s a movement without a leader. Instead, it’s organized by individuals and groups with various website and social media pages.
Dwyer is among those organizers.
“Instead of budget cuts we demand our government 1) Tax the rich — make corporations pay their fair share by endorsing H.R. 1124 Fairness in Taxation Act 2011. 2) End the wars — withdraw all troops and contractors from Iraq and Afghanistan and bring that money home. 3) Create jobs like (President Franklin D. Rooselvelt), and rebuild the power grid with wind and solar farms to expand the tax revenue base and invest in clean energy,” Dwyer wrote in one of the circulating emails that is also posted on Facebook and several websites.
Such ideas may appear left-leaning politically, said Naples resident Drew Scott, 38, who plans to attend Saturday, but he doesn’t see it that way.
“Let’s not get so caught up in the right and left,” said Scott, who lost his small marketing business during the economic crash years ago. “The conclusion that government is not doing the right thing is obvious and undeniable right now. I’m not the kind of person who says tax the rich until they can’t take it anymore. It’s counterproductive and wouldn’t give us enough money anyway.”
The improprieties of politicians and corporations have affected him personally in these recent years, he said.
“Through the luck and love of family, I have a part-time job and my wife still does some graphic design,” he said. “Still, we’re just barely making ends.”
Cynthia Odierna, of East Naples, is a teacher who plans to attend the rally. Her main personal protest remains against war and the military-industrial complex.
“It’s a huge reason our country is broke,” Odierna said.
She said that nearly everyone should agree with the main concept of Occupy Wall Street, which is to give 99 percent of the population 99 percent of the say in their government.
“I don’t understand why people who aren’t rich are into throwing their money at the huge corporations to bail them out,” Odierna said. “I don’t understand their loyalty.”