Jeff Jacoby
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At the Occupy Phoenix demonstrations, fliers encourage protesters to violently resist police officers, asserting that "you will usually have only two options: submit, or kill the cop." At Zuccotti Park in Manhattan, an Occupy Wall Street protester was sexually assaulted in her tent; according to the New York Post, a woman was raped at the same site a few weeks earlier. In Denver, "Occupy" activists turned on the police, screaming obscenities and knocking a motorcycle cop to the ground. Occupy Oakland grew even more violent, as police were pelted with bottles and rocks, and had M-80 firecrackers thrown at them. And in cities from Boston toBerkeley, Occupy encampments have coincided with surges in vandalism, assault, and theft.

Some individuals have strained to compare the Occupy Wall Street protests to the Tea Party movement. "They're not that different," President Obama told ABC's Jake Tapper. "Both on the left and the right, I think people feel separated from their government." The Daily Show's host Jon Stewart argued: "Here's a group of Americans, disenchanted, railing against big government bailouts…. These protesters, how are they not like the Tea Party?"

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Jeff Jacoby

Jeff Jacoby is an Op-Ed writer for the Boston Globe, a radio political commentator, and a contributing columnist for Townhall.com.