Last night, as police arrested dozens of Occupy Wall Street demonstrators gathered at Zuccoti Park to commemorate the six-month anniversary of the original protests, a video was taken that purports to show police tackling and handcuffing activist Cecily McMillan, who was once profiled as part of Rolling Stone's coverage of the Occupy movement.
The New York Observer is reporting that, according to UStream live feeds, McMillan had a seizure during her encounter with police and was taken to the emergency room, possibly with cracked ribs. According to the 2011 Rolling Stone article by Jeff Sharlet, McMillan, an organizer for the Northeast region of youths involved with the Democratic Socialists of America, has had a previous violent confrontation with police. Sharlet's profile adds that, though McMillan once led a more "conventional life," she was willing to put her body on the line for the Occupy cause:
She's a former cheerleader; she used to want to be a politician. She says her studies and her work – she's also a nanny – prevent her from sleeping in the park. But she's not afraid to put her body on the line. She was arrested after she charged Wall Street three times, a "direct action" that even some veteran anarchists – militant and masked – considered wildly courageous, if foolish. A cop thought so, too, blasted her with pepper spray, knocked her down, stepped on her head and snarled at her, "Shut up. You get what you deserve, cunt bitch."
Neither the original nor the updated YouTube videos on the Observer's website are clear enough to determine where McMillan is among the general scuffling between police and protesters. Earlier in the day, 15 people were arrested and three officers suffered injuries. Protesters like Michael Premo, a 30-year-old New York resident who, according to MSNBC, identified himself as the "spokesperson for the movement," wanted to remind the general public that the Occupy movement hasn't gone away — it's merely been hibernating for the winter. "This is our spring offensive," said Premo. "People think the Occupy movement has gone away. It's important for people to see we're back."