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At Boston's Dewey Square, a protest of varied voices

Posted by Andrew Tran  October 4, 2011 03:35 PM

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Since pitching tents Friday night in Boston's Dewey Square, Occupy Boston has attracted a broad spectrum of protesters angry about high unemployment and corporate influence in politics.

Among them are students and retirees, urbanites and suburbanites, those laid off and unemployed, and those taking a day off of work. The group, an offshoot of the Arab-Spring-inspired Occupy Wall Street movement, appears to welcome all.

Outside the media tent, 34-year-old Gregg Housh said he has commuted each morning from his home in Malden to join the protest.

“I’m fed up,” said Housh, a father of two who runs a web design and search engine optimization company.

Housh was among the nearly dozen demonstrators a group of Globe correspondents interviewed Monday afternoon to capture the face of the movement in words, pictures, and video.

Housh said he'd been involved in the movement since Sept. 17, the first day of the New York protests. He estimated that about 100 people have been camping at Dewey Square each night. The multi-colored tent city is equipped, among other things, with a meditation tent and a first aid station.

Housh said another few hundred protesters arrive early each morning to partake in the day’s events, from daily general assemblies to marches during morning and evening commutes.

At about 4:30 p.m. Monday, some participants waved handmade signs at passing cars and crowds, with phrases such as “Corporatocracy is the new Fascism” and “I can’t afford my own politician, so I made this sign.”

Others played guitar or tapped away on laptops and tablets. One green-haired woman walked around the campsite, offering free bread to protesters, press, and passersby alike.

The crowd was hard to typecast by age, dress, or message.

“It covers the most hardcore anarchists you can imagine to people in suits who actually work in these buildings,” Housh said, mentioning one man who he says quit his job at the Federal Reserve Bank on the first day of protests to join the group.

Housh said the movement, which some have criticized for its lack of a clear and consistent message, continues to grow, with new "Occupy" protests planned in Miami and London in the days ahead.

Meanwhile, Housh said, he and other protesters plan to occupy Boston's Financial District indefinitely.

"I’m going to be here ‘til it's over," he said.

Benjamin Austin, Brittany Berkowitz, Gillian Barbieri, Michael Flanagan, Wynn Harrison, Brett Otis contributed to this report, part of of a collaboration between Emerson College and the Globe.

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