The St. Louis Police Department SWAT team barricaded the Bank of America building in downtown St. Louis, denying bank customers access to their accounts. Eye witnesses are stating that no one is being allowed inside the building unless they're an employee. So, what does one of the biggest banks in the nation need a SWAT team for? No one is physically threatening them.
According to the activist website SHTFplan.com, this incident actually happened in August, prior to the Occupy Wall Street movement. This doesn't dilute the meaning or the message, however. It just illustrates how much anger and frustration has built up at the major banks for the last several years.
A gentleman who is a part of the movement told reporters that when the group he was with tried to gain access to withdraw all their money, they were blocked by police. The officers said they would see if the bank would allow eight of them inside to withdraw their money, but banking officials said, "No dice. No one's getting in." Not in so many words, but you get the meaning.
Not only that, but the BoA website has been up and down for the last several days, making it virtually impossible for customers to complete any kind of transaction. ATMs only permit a certain amount of money to be withdrawn per day, like $400. If you've got thousands of dollars with BoA, making a $400 withdrawal every day with an ATM will be tedious.
The gentleman who was interviewed for this video said,
They would not let me get past that barricade, where those three guys are. I talked to the lieutenant of the St. Louis Police Department - and he said they [customers?] don't have a legal right - but he was going to try to work out something, a symbolic gesture where eight people to pull out their money, I being one of them.'
He came back later and said they [BofA] will not go along with that. You will have to withdraw your money online.
Seeing as how the online site isn't working properly (on purpose, perhaps?), that's simply not a viable option at the moment. Bank of America's actions are blatantly illegal, and if anything, the police should be assisting the customers, not blocking them, from withdrawing their own money. Under these circumstances, the best solution for those who want to take their money out of BoA is to write out a check and walk over to your nearest credit union and say, "I want to open an account. Let me know when this check clears."
The president and congress need to start sitting up and taking notice. These are ordinary people. Some of whom have thousands of dollars in checking, savings, and c.d. accounts with the bank. Thomas Jefferson, in writing to John Taylor in 1816, wrote:
I sincerely believe that banking establishments are more dangerous than standing armies, and that the principle of spending money to be paid by posterity under the name of funding is but swindling futurity on a large scale."
Even back then, Jefferson was right. Banks can not be trusted to do the right thing.
Â©2011 Reno Berkeley for Gather News.