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The Rob Kall Bottom Up Radio Show Podcast

Debra Sweet; Thoughts on Activism, Protest, Civil Resistance

Podcast submitted by Rob Kall

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Headlined to H4 12/29/10

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Notes from the interview
Debra Sweet

Insider reports that NY Times doesn't cover protests unless there is violence or celebrity involved.

There are lots of tactics we can use.
First amendment says we have freedom of speech and freedom of assembly.
Do this physical protest everywhere we can, including where they say we can't...

Barack Obama ran on the back of anti-war sentiment-- has been able, quite successfully, to turn that anti-war sentiment completely inside, out, claiming to be a peace president, sold the war in Afghanistan as a war of necessity.
The reasons Bush was able to sell that war and that Obama continues to claim that it's a just war is completely bogus.

Protesting and coordinating with police.
The police's role is never to protect protesters. Their role is to restrict and prevent the protest-- their sole goal is to get protesters inside the barricades-- to contain and restrict the protest.

The internet has made the role of the police easy. All they ahve to do is check the website for what the plans are. They'll call you up.
Some will be thankful. My response is I'm not going to do your work for you.
I'm not for supporting the increasingly authoritarian setup that our society is moving towards.

In the sixties the goal was to do a protest without getting arrested. We weren't tryting to get into jail.
A lot of this took a big leap during the 1980s anti-apartheid. I saw a big jump.

When Amado Dialo was arrested, there were days and days o f organized protests where people layed themselves down an knew theyw ere going to be arrested, but it shamed Mayor Giuliani.

Difference in how protests are done in France, UK, Germany?
There's a largely different experience in much of Europe, since they have largely different parties that contend with each other

protesting against media--
Part of 2004 protest was against NY Times, CNN, Fox-- and they gave extremely narrow coverage to major protests.  

The means we're using to protest really should reflect our approach to the issues.

Action in DC Jan 11 at 11. see details at

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