The Charlotte Observer is reporting on a split in the Occupy Charlotte movement, over one individual's attempt to control the movement and its online presence. A Charlotte businessman, Tom Shope, has been accused of misusing donated funds, controlling the Facebook page and website of the group, and has even registered the name "Occupy Charlotte" as a business in Mecklenburg County.
Karen and I enjoyed taking part in the Occupy Charlotte protest last weekend, and we support the Occupy movement 100 percent. I have not spent enough time at Occupy Charlotte to know what the opinion of most of the participants might be. However, I find it troubling that one individual is trying to impose his leadership over the local movement. My understanding all along has been that this is a leaderless movement in which decisions are made by consensus, so Mr. Shope's actions seem to directly contradict the spirit and the principles of the movement.
I very much hope that this split can be mended. This is supposed to be a movement for the people, not a vehicle for individuals to pursue their personal agendas and ambitions.