Saturday, November 19, 2011

Micronationalism Comes to “Occupy Wall Street”

There seems to be some overlap emerging in the Occupy Wall Street movement.  Just as Free State Christiania in Copenhagen, Denmark, and Greenpeace’s “Waveland” micronational publicity-stunt on the Scottish island of Rockall in 1997 have combined separatism and micronationalism with left-wing politics and the counterculture, something similar seems to be happening on this side of the Atlantic.

The left-oriented Second Vermont Republic movement has mentioned on its website that many S.V.R. activists are involved in the Occupy Vermont movement as well as that in New York City over the past weeks and months.  The idea has now emerged that Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan, which has been ground-zero of the Occupy protest movement, might declare itself a sovereign state, along the lines of Christiania, or the portable “Woodstock Nation” happenings of the 1970s.  This idea is dovetailing with the sometime S.V.R. agenda of dissolving the Union.  (See this article.)

An independent Zuccotti Park republic would be notable for a couple reasons.  First, at 33,000 square feet—or 0.0031 square kilometers—it would, if recognized, be by far the smallest recognized sovereign state in the world.  The current title-holder, Vatican City, at 0.44 square kilometers, is 142 times larger.  (However, Zuccotti Park would still dwarf the currently-unrecognized smallest declared state, the BjornSocialist Republic, the territory of which is a rock in a lake in southern Sweden totalling about six or eight meters square.)

Second, Zuccotti Park, if it kept the name Zuccotti Park in some form or other, would be the last country in the world in alphabetical order, after Zimbabwe, Republic of.  (In English, at least, but not in every language: Cyprus, for example, is known in German as Zypern, which comes after Zuccotti alphabetically.)  For these reasons alone, I fully support Zuccotista separatist aspirations.

Lastly, a Zuccotti Park Free State would need a flag.  So far, no clear vexillological consensus has emerged in this movement, but this one gets my vote:

I welcome any other suggestions for Occupy Wall Street or 99-Percenter flags in general or Zuccotti Park flags in particular.

First, of course, the protesters have to be able to get back into the park and stay there.  A technicality, I say.  A mere bagatelle.

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