Hundreds join Occupy O.C. protest while others scoff
Resting on his bicycle between two fellow riders, Newport Beach resident Jeff Yeargain waited and watched with apparent contempt as more than 500 people marched across his path toward a major Irvine intersection.
Yeargain and with his two friends, a businessman from Costa Mesa and a retired attorney from Irvine, waited at Alton Parkway on the canal's riding path for the Occupy Wall Street movement's latest incarnation to pass by.
"They just want something for nothing," Yeargain said.
"It's a complete joke," one of his friends said, the other claiming the demonstrators opposed capitalism and were probably brought in from New York.
To those marching from Irvine's City Hall on Saturday afternoon, the three men's criticisms echo early sentiments about the tea party movement before the 2010 elections, when across the country folks spontaneously connected over the government's bailouts of banks and Detroit car companies.
"It should mobilize people come 2012," Robin Kissel of Laguna Hills told the Daily Pilot.
Kissel has been out of work for six months and said that she had been holding out for a job equal to the one she lost, but now she's going "stir crazy" and would settle for even a minimum-wage position.
Others in the crowd were also unemployed, such as Brandon Morales, 27, from Tustin. Morales was laid off as a financial analyst for an aviation company in Santa Ana three months ago. He graduated with a degree in philosophy in 2006 but has been depending on his experience as a financial analyst to land something new.
"Back then it was graduate with a degree, and then you get a job," he said. "Now, there's no work."
— Joseph Serna, Times Community News
Photo: Alex Sircello of Orange County stands with other protesters outside Irvine City Hall during the Occupy O.C. protests Saturday. Credit: Ani Yessayan / Times Community News