In Occupying, Knoxville is Not Nashville or Washington

Excerpt from a Josh Flory report on Occupy Knoxville:
While Nashville’s Occupy encampment sparked a legal confrontation with the administration of Gov. Bill Haslam and members of Occupy Wall Street were recently forced out of a Manhattan park by police, Knoxville sympathizers have declined to camp out in public places and have cooperated with law enforcement.
Why the differing approaches?
Rose Hawley, a South Knoxville resident who has been active in the local movement, said Knoxville isn’t New York or Nashville.
“They have the human resources to occupy (a location) 24-7,” she said.
There may be more complex factors at work, though. Nathan Kelly, a University of Tennessee political scientist who has written a book about the politics of income inequality in the United States, said via email that the Occupy Wall Street message likely doesn’t resonate broadly in Knoxville, which he described as a very conservative place.
Kelly said the message of Occupy Wall Street is that the American economic system is leaving many people behind and needs to become more fair.
“A lot of rank-and-file conservatives are also really upset about the dramatic levels of inequality present in America today and share a sense that many are being left behind economically,” he said. “But for conservatives, the narrative is not that the economic system is somehow to blame, but rather that lots of individuals have made bad choices

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