An originally enthusiastic woman involved in the “Occupy San Diego” demonstrations has called it quits, she told conservative radio host Rick Amato, because of the protest organization’s fringe nature.
Amato’s radio show featured the young woman, who asked that her identity remain confidential, in a twenty minute interview Wednesday.
Identified only as “Jean,” the disillusioned demonstrator said she had attended an event at which Amato was a speaker, and found the participants represented too much of a “fringe element.”
“I don’t feel like I fit in,” Jean told Amato. “Some of the social issues aren’t in line with mine, and it’s difficult to sit down and listen to — to sit down and swallow the whole drink.”
A small business owner who calls herself “fairly successful,” Jean was having difficulty obtaining business loans from local banks. “I own a small business, and I saved up. I’m not trying to get rich, I’m just trying to build up.”
She first attended a Tea Party rally, an experience that she see found too extreme for her liking. Upon hearing of the Occupy San Diego group, she considered it as a new alternative. “Now I’m like, ok,” she said, “maybe here?”
Jean described seeing large masses of homeless and possibly inebriated demonstrators mingling within the small group of social activists. She recounted, with surprise, seeing questions on the group’s Facebook page regarding sex offenders in their ranks and referencing past incidents. She described the group’s general assemblies as “a little bit of a circus.”
But it was the group’s “fringe” element that convinced Jean not to come back. “They want to include everybody and everybody’s opinion,” she said. “I need a simple movement with a direction.”
Jean even expressed regret for the protesters’ treatment of law enforcement.
“I really felt bad for the police officers — it was difficult to listen to,” she said. “That was hard. I went and shook [the officers’] hands. I have respect for the police and I think they’re part of the 99 percent.”
Listen to the full interview: The Rick Amato Show