New York – Hundreds of Occupy Wall Street supporters staged a peaceful march here Friday to the headquarters of the five largest U.S. banks to deliver letters "from the 99 percent to the 1 percent."
The marchers made stops at the Manhattan offices of JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, Bank of America, Morgan Stanley and Wells Fargo.
"We who seek economic justice believe it was these entities that caused the present economic devastation, and they have to be accountable for that," a spokesperson for Occupy Wall Street, Yesenia Barragan, told Efe.
Friday's march built on an initiative of Occupy the Board Room, a group that urged people to submit letters online to named executives of the major banks.
The participants in the march deliver printed letters at the various bank headquarters, except for Bank of America, where a line of security guards blocked the entrance.
Confronted with that obstacle, the marchers folded letters into paper airplanes and hurled them into the air, stopping afterward to pick them up off the street and sidewalk.
Letters like the ones delivered Friday "have been ignored by the banks, which are insensitive to the needs of 99 percent," Barragan said.
The OWS movement seeks to highlight the growing gap between the richest 1 percent of Americans and everyone else, a phenomenon documented in a study released this week that shows the top 1 percent saw their after-tax income soar 275 percent between 1979 and 2007.
OWS activists blame the big banks for mortgage foreclosures, high interest rates on credit cards and the burdens imposed on students who borrow to finance their college education, among other things.
Since OWS set up shop Sept. 17 at a park in New York's financial district, the movement has spread around the country and inspired similar protests abroad.