Pro-Wisconsin Rally @ MS State Capitol (2.26.11)
and so it came to pass, on the last saturday in February, that a Pro-Wisconsin Rally was held on the steps of the MS State Capitol in Jackson. the rally was part of moveon.org‘s 50-State Rally initiative that was happening all over america. they were joined at the rally by members of the fair taxation group US Uncut, who had just come from a protest, of their own, at the FEDEX print shop over in Ridgeland. (read all about it here) there were also counter-protesters from a local Tea Party chapter from Terry, MS also at the Capitol.
so, as you can imagine, it was an interesting day.
the rally was scheduled to begin at noon. i got there a few minutes past noon and ran into the US Uncut crew as i was making my way toward the front of the Capitol steps.
that’s Carl Gibson, taking a call from a fellow US Uncut member in Washington, D.C.
after that, i made my way to the front of the Capitol
the PA system had been hooked up and the rally was getting underway
that’s the Tea Party counter-protest back there.
the woman in the white shirt is Sue Harman. she was the MC. she’s also retired military with a low tolerance for fools. in other words, pretty bad-ass.
this speaker (didn’t get his name) was representing an organisation called IDEA (couldn’t find a good link.)
the Tea Party responding to what he was saying. and by responding i mean “slightly heckling”
while he was speaking, i decided to walk around some, to get some crowd shots
it was a great, pre-spring day in Jackson, MS.
Sue takes the mic again.
filming for US Uncut
really like this shot
he was a cool guy. he liked the Death of the Endless shirt i was wearing that day.
Carl Gibson took the mic to talk about what US Uncut was all about.
he got heckled some too, but he just kept right on going.
Sue takes the mic again.
he was a Reverend, but i forgot to take down his name.
also really dug this one
responding to some Tea Party folks
as the rally draws to a close, the Reverend leads both crowds in the benediction.
after the benediction, the pro-wisconsin crew ended it with a old time labor song (i’ve forgotten the name!)
after that last song, the Tea Party crowd started singing the Star-Spangled Banner.
at which point, the Pro-Wisconsin crew started singing the Star-Spangled Banner along with the Tea Party!
and the next thing you know…
both crowds are singing along with each other!
it actually ended the day on a very positive note.
and after that, it was over. well, except for the mingling and trading of contact information.
oh! and something else happened that i thought said a lot about us…
some of the Tea Party folks came over to talk to the pro-Wisconsin folks
and it was civil and polite. as mississippians often are.
dig that shirt
a group from the UAW Global Organizing Institute was also there in solidarity
the US Uncut crew
and this was the last shot i took after i said my goodbyes and was walking back to my car.
but, it isn’t the last shot i want to end this blog on. more on that in a bit.
first, i would like to say that, aside from some slight heckling from the Tea Party crowd while some of the Pro-Wisconsin speakers were speaking, it was a civil protest from all involved. the only thing that left a bad taste in my mouth was when Sue invited a man from the Tea Party crowd up to speak (i didn’t grab his name or photo. i was on the other side of the rally shooting) and while he was giving his speech, he tried to insinuate that all the people that were in the Pro-Wisconsin crowd, esp the speakers, weren’t from Mississippi. he tried that twice and each time the Pro-Wisconsin crowd booed. If you’re not from mississippi you may not get why that’s such an ugly insinuation, but we tend to have a ugly history of blaming “outside agitators” for “rilling our good people up” and causing trouble. anyway, didn’t like that.
but! i’m not gonna end this post on a negative note. i’m gonna end it on that shot i was talking about and one of my favorite quotes:
“We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory will swell when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.” – Abraham Lincoln
have a good one everybody!
see ya next post.