"Dear Protestors:I am sympathetic to your cause. The issues you raise are important ones. Thank you for raising them. That said, please obey the law."
Thank you Mayor Slay for acknowledging that our movement is raising important issues. We have had positive press since the onset of our occupation. We intend for this movement to become a living forum for principled discussion. Our aspiration is to remain assembled long enough for our roots to grow and our discussion to blossom. We are a peaceful, all-inclusive movement that needs all viewpoints to join with us to voice concerns that pertain to all walks of life. The discussion we lead through this forum could uncover underlying moral principles that St. Louis citizens share as consensus. Please allow us time to hear from all of the 99% so that we can reach our common ground; consensus on these moral principles will help navigate our future political discourse.
Mayor Slay goes on to say, "For the past five or so days, you have camped out at Kiener Plaza. That is in violation of a city ordinance that sets a curfew in the parks." ... "The Metropolitan Police Department has begun enforcing the municipal ordinance. That will mean either citations or arrests, at the discretion of the police chief. (If city officials controlled the department, it would be at our discretion. We do not.)"
We understand the police response to enforcing the municipal ordinance. We have worked diligently to maintain positive correspondence with the police, and it was not our intent to provoke police action. The Metropolitan Police Department is part of the 99%.The goal of the occupation, as explained earlier, was to allow the appropriate time for our forum to grow and to reach common ground. Our First Amendment right to peaceful assembly has been placed within the limitations of the municipal ordinance of set curfew hours.
I would argue that our occupation during the hours that break curfew at Kiener Plaza, 10pm-6am, actually benefits the community by reducing crime and providing safe haven for those members of our community that have fallen through the cracks. The curfew municipal ordinance is in place in order to deter criminal behavior during those hours. Criminal behavior is completely absent from our occupation due to the presence of peaceful participants with solid internal structure. We do not need curfew enforced to provide safety to the community, the movement achieves that independently.
Mayor Slay and the Metropolitan Police Department, please work towards common ground with us. This occupation is unprecedented and therefore there is nothing on the books that would allow us to apply for an occupancy permit. Please acknowledge safety and criminal deterrence as valuable byproducts of our occupation. Is there some injunction that could be put on the enforcing of municipal ordinance considering we achieve what the ordinance set out to do initially? We want to work with you. We want to benefit the community at large and we believe that with some leniency on your part we can adhere to a solution.