SEATTLE - Many people in downtown Seattle Tuesday were angry, disappointed, looking for some kind of justice. But they weren't protestors or "Occupiers" or anarchists; they were just plain folks who picked the wrong place and the wrong time to shop or stay or visit downtown.
"Welcome to Seattle, eh?" said Sam from Vancouver B.C.
He came back to his car, parked outside of NikeTown, to find tires slashed and windows smashed. He was not happy, a little bitter, in fact, and was quick to bash America and say he was glad to live north of the border. When reminded that Vancouver is very well known for its own riots and its own brand of street-fighting anarchists, he said: "At least in Vancouver I know what areas to avoid. Here I don't know where I should avoid."
Chad Veach and his wife and five-month-old daughter were in town shopping for furniture for their church in Puyallup. They parked a few spaces away from Sam and their car had similar damage, plus a huge stripe of spray paint down the side.
"It's pretty amazing to see people lash out and take it out on innocent people like that, their opinions and their passions," said Veach. "I don’t know if that’s the best way to go about what they're trying to accomplish."
A few blocks away, Ray Ward recounted the moments of panic when protestors started shattering the windows of the Wells Fargo Bank branch he was in. "Sledgehammers," he said incredulously. "They were throwing short-handled sledgehammers through the broken windows at the tellers.
Jay Boswell feels victimized too. He was involved in the early stage of the occupy movement and says its been hijacked by anarchists.
"They're violent, they have no idea what they want, all they want to do is cause trouble," he said.
Ray Ward is from Japan, here in Seattle for treatment for a serious eye condition that has left him temporarily almost blind. He's been thinking of moving here since this is where he comes for treatment. But now he's not so sure.
"Nothing like this ever happens in Japan. It's scary," he said.