Nightly News   |  October 10, 2011

Occupy Wall Street protests grow louder

Research shows the incomes of U.S. workers fell even more rapidly since the rebound began in the summer of 2009 than during the recession itself – just one of the reasons more and more people are joining anti-Wall Street protests. NBC’s Mara Schiavocampo reports.

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BRIAN WILLIAMS, anchor: And now from the unrest in Egypt to the protests in the streets here at home, and another sobering sign of the economic times. A new analysis of census data has found that Americans' incomes fell more in the two years after the recession ended in '09 than they did during the recession. That painful reality is just one aspect of what protesters who have gathered around the country under the Occupy Wall Street banner are angry about. And this movement shows no signs of going away. NBC 's Mara Schiavocampo with us from Lower Manhattan tonight. Mara , good evening.

MARA SCHIAVOCAMPO reporting: Brian , good evening. Today demonstrations continues in cities across the country, including here in New York , where protesters were joined by some new, younger voices.

Ms. KRISTEN TAYLOR (New York City Teacher): European history.

Group of People: European history.

SCHIAVOCAMPO: From school to the streets. On day 24 of the Occupy Wall Street protests, demonstrators were joined by a group of students on their day off.

Unidentified Girl: I want to make the world to be a better place.

SCHIAVOCAMPO: Teachers rallied, too.

Ms. TAYLOR: Our children have no arts curriculum. They play on a postage stamp-sized play yard once a week.

SCHIAVOCAMPO: Groups gathered from Boston to Atlanta , voicing their anger about what they call an unfair economic system.

Mr. TIM FRANZEN (Occupy Atlanta): We're here for the long haul. If we got to -- if we got to stay for a here, we'll be here for a year.

SCHIAVOCAMPO: Over the weekend, at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington , YouTube video shows protesters targeted with pepper spray. In Des Moines , Iowa , 30 arrested for gathering at the Capitol . And in Atlanta , perhaps a sign of anger towards Washington . Video posted online shows Congressman and civil rights icon John Lewis being denied a request to speak at a rally in his home state.

Unidentified Man: The group is very divided.

SCHIAVOCAMPO: The growing demonstrations are increasingly made up of more than young idealists, attracting people like 67-year-old Pat Reed .

Ms. PAT REED: My life savings was invested in real estate and the stock market, and so now I have nothing.

SCHIAVOCAMPO: Now backing from a major company. Ben Jerry 's posting a message to protesters on their website saying, "We stand with you." Experts say while broad support is important, it's time for Occupy Wall Street to define what they're fighting for.

Mr. LARRY SABATO (UVA Center for Politics Director): For this movement to be effective, they have got to focus on the one thing that matters to most Americans right now, and that's jobs.

SCHIAVOCAMPO: And the movement is getting a lot of financial support, as well. Here at Zuccotti Park alone, organizers say they're bringing in 5 to $6,000 in cash every day. Brian :

WILLIAMS: Mara Schiavocampo , Lower Manhattan tonight. Mara , thanks.