Activism, Uncensored: 71 Arrested in "Build Back Better" Demonstrations
The Poor People's Campaign returns to Washington, but can't get near Joe Manchin's office
“Liz and I talk about it all the time,” said Reverend William Barber of the Poor People’s Campaign, referring to his co-chair Liz Theoharis. “They want you to fight for voting rights over here [he pointed right] and fight for living wages over there [he pointed left]. That’s the Washington Two-Step. It’s a way of siloing issues so they can divide the fight.”
The Poor People’s Campaign traces back to Martin Luther King’s 1967 plan for a march of poor people to D.C. to demand jobs, unemployment insurance, and a fair minimum wage. This was after his famous Riverside Church speech in Harlem, around the time he was altering his focus to opposition to the Vietnam War and economic inequality. In other words, after King started to lose the backing of more mainstream Democrats by leaving his “lane” to become more of a peace activist.
The new incarnation of the Poor People’s Campaign, led by Barber, insists it’s not “left or right, Democrat or Republican,” but a “moral fusion movement” that advocates for social spending while opposing things like defense spending. In the extant case they’re pushing for the passage of the “Build Back Better” plan and training their ire on Senator Joe Manchin, whom they see as the impediment. But my guess is the “Washington Two-Step” would work just as well without Manchin.
I think the Biden administration got what it wanted — a record $768 billion defense bill, a stalled social package, and folks like Reverend Barber doing the president a favor by generating video of anti-poverty activists getting themselves arrested marching under the banner of his slogan. But, who knows? Maybe between now and the “Low-wage workers’ assembly” demonstration planned for next June 18th, protests like this will apply the desired pressure.
In any case, Ford Fischer and TK partners News2Share did here what they always do, getting great video of the chronology of Barber’s demonstration, his negotiation with Capitol police, and the arrest of 71 activists, while also showing how a certain type of once-common protest has been shut down by new Covid-era rules that prevent people from coming into legislative office buildings without invitation. Take a look and see what you think; as always, comments welcome.
Not to be a big wiener head but the really interesting demonstrations are not occurring amongst people dumb enough to believe Joe Biden's mumbled word salad.
The really interesting demonstrations are occurring in Europe where people are actually uniting in solidarity over vaccine mandates.
Solidarity you say? What the fuck is that?
No it's not a deodorant sold in Poland in the 80s. And no, you can't buy it on Amazon.
It's when the vaxxed in Italy burn their green passes to show support for the unvaxxed and their basic human rights.
Human rights you ask? What the fuck are they? (Topic of another lecture.)
It's when huge numbers of the vaxxed & the unvaxxed take to the streets together and remind their leaders all the things about democracy that said leaders have evidently forgotten.
As a response to this outpouring of democracy, the Belgium authorities seem to favor water cannons, tear gas & truncheons. While the German authorities seem to prefer a more hands on approach where they just face plant your unvaxxed ass into the concrete. Pepper spray is also quite popular. I've seen more grandpas splayed out with 5 cops on their backs in the last few weeks than I ever thought I'd see in reality. But like the one cop told the unvaxxed fellow, "The unvaxxed aren't human."
Gee that's not a recipe for a pogrom is it?
Luckily the news media is blaming all the violence on right wing extremists and not the government who we all know only want what's best for us all.
Damn, you right wingers are insidious.
Huh. Well, if I read this right, you seem to believe that this Build Back Better Bill is something that will actually benefit poor people instead of being wasted by a totally incompetent government and adding to our national debt exponentially. It will also include all kinds of garbage that curtails freedom. I am with you on allowing people to protest, though I haven't heard why they were arrested yet, either. I doubt they'll be held long. Leftists are usually allowed to protest and ruin cities without many consequences.