Freedom Plaza, Washington, D.C.
Jacquelin Martin - Associated Press
Yesterday was the beginning of the October2011.org. action at "Freedom Plaza" in Washington, D.C.
As in New York's "Occupy Wall Street" and the solidarity type protests now occurring in some 140 plus cities nationwide, this was the kick-off of demonstration and action taking place within blocks of the White House, K Street and the Congress; in essence, where the power brokers controlling this country are doing their "handiwork".
The gathering at "Freedom Plaza" was festival like, under bright sunshine and 70 degrees with a few speakers rousing the crowd (Dick Gregory), some rap artists "doing their thing", people carrying signs condemning Wall Street, the wars, the corporatists and the like, chanting "This is what democracy looks like" and then marching off to the "Chamber of Commerce" headquarters some blocks away, a protest walk and demonstration in front of an organization that symbolizes the corrupting influence of corporate largesse usurping the electoral process that was let loose in the wake of the Supreme Court's decision in "Citizens United".
These protest gatherings are cathartic happenings giving people a voice saying in essence, "We are here, we are going to be heard, we are not going to be ignored, we are staying and the powers that be are on notice; things will not continue as they have; we demand things change".
For the present at least, it is great that people are gathering together protesting and demonstrating their discontent and that these events are occurring all over the country. Even the main stream media has finally taken notice, no longer ignoring, dismissing and condescending toward this people's movement.
As I wrote on Tuesday, October 4 in these pages, "Occupy Wall Street Protests Spreading, There's a Need to Focus on the Core Issue, Money in Politics", OPEDNEWS, "It's a phenomenon that has no end in sight with as many issues as there are people. For the present it's enough just to gather, show solidarity"and be committed."
Although the organizers and planners of these events characterize them as our "Arab Spring" there is one significant difference; in the U.S. there is no Hosni Mubarak, Ben Ali or Muammar Qaddafi to be overthrown.
In the U.S. it is our electoral process that has been usurped by the big moneyed and special interests that is corrupting our representative democracy. That electoral process has created a plutocracy of corporate oligarchs along with the elected officials they select, underwrite and get elected to enact the laws and regulations, conduct the oversight and enforcement all to the benefit and control of those interests.
It is our corrupted electoral process that is at the core of every major issue and problem facing this country and why overturning that electoral process needs to be the ultimate focus of the protests sweeping across the country.
This writer intends to work toward that end. Stay tuned.