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Does This Belong in a Museum? Smithsonian is Collecting Occupy Wall Street Signs


"ongoing commitment to document the spirit of American democracy"

Does this sign belong in a museum?

The Smithsonian Institution thinks it might. That's why the National Museum of American History is sending representatives to collect materials, such as protest signs, from the ongoing Occupy Wall Street movement.

It's part of the Smithsonian's "ongoing commitment to document the spirit of American democracy and the American political process, including how people express their points-of-view through political rallies, demonstrations and protests," the institution said in a statement.

"The Museum collects from contemporary events because many of these materials are ephemeral and if not collected immediately, are lost to the historical record," the statement said.

The National Museum of American History is one of the nation's preeminent museums and is part of the government-funded, Washington D.C.-based Smithsonian Institution.

There are no current plans to display any of the signs, and a Smithsonian spokeswoman would not comment on the materials that have been acquired so far, saying only in an e-mail to The Blaze, "collecting is still in the early processes and we cannot determine what the future holds at this moment."

According to the institution's statement, it's not only Occupy Wall Street signs that the Smithsonian is interested in collecting. Other recent acquisitions include signage from the 2008 presidential campaign, the Tea Party rally in March 2010, Jon Stewart's "Rally to Restore Sanity" and even Glenn Beck's "Restoring Honor" event last year in Washington, D.C.

The spokeswoman said there are no plans to display any of those materials either.

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