Posts Tagged ‘protesters’

Protesting Puppets: Why Supporters of PBS Marched on Washington

Written by buzz. Posted in Politics

Written By Jessica Nichols

The first presidential debate sparked a lot of controversy, the least of which did not fall on America’s sweetheart, Big Bird. Romney’s comments about cutting funding for the Public Broadcasting Service, though conceding, “I like PBS, I love Big Bird,” inspired the protest held November 3, aptly named “Million Muppet March.”

The “Million Muppet March” brought together more puppets than probably had ever been in once place, standing for one purpose before.

Protesters marched Saturday, November 3, in support of PBS after Romney makes comments about cutting federal funding to the program

If Romney likes PBS and Big Bird, then why would he attempt to cut funding for the household name and channel? Romney had this to say, “I’m going to stop the subsidy to PBS… I’m not going to keep spending money on things to borrow money from China to pay for.”

Romney has been under fire about the comment ever since. Trending on social networking cites, memes, thousands of tweets, and an extensive media debate over whether cuts to PBS would begin to make a dent in federal deficit later, organizers created the “Million Muppet March.” Supporters of public broadcasting were outraged to hear Romney’s comments, and critic Bill Maher from “Real Time With Bill Maher” pointed out the PBS subsidy’s small proportion of the federal budget: a mere $445 million of $3.8 trillion.

The spirited march on Washington was started by animation executive, Michael Bellavia, and Chris Mecham, a university student, in response to Romney’s comments. Bellavia said, “I figured, why just make it a virtual show of support? Why not take this opportunity because it seemed like there was already a growing interest in it and actually make it an active, participatory event.”

The “Million Muppet March” saw protesters toting anywhere from fun-sized sock puppets to full-sized creations of our favorite neighborhood friends from Sesame Street: Big Bird, Bert and Ernie, Animal, and more.

Sesame Street, which has been airing for 43 years, is a very popular educational program, so there was no problem for organizers of the march to find people willing to come out and show their support for this longtime American institution. Organizers of the march say that at least 600 people signed up to participate in the actual march at the capital, with thousands more showing their support virtually through Facebook, Twitter, and even their own marches across the nation.

As the election draws nearer, supporters hope that their efforts raised enough awareness about the importance of federal subsidies to the Public Broadcasting System, for public television and public radio.

Occupy America: the New Silent Majority?

Written by buzz. Posted in Politics

“Written by: Kathleen Mulvihill”
(As told by Joe Fly)

This is America, so I have the right to voice my opinion about the Occupy Movement and not be swatted or otherwise squashed, if you know what I mean. A lot of you wish to be a fly on the wall at one time or another. Well, here’s your chance to hear it from the real thing: me, Joe Fly.

I’ll get straight to the point: seems to me this whole Occupy thing could find itself Vacant if someone doesn’t wake up and smell the beef. Let me digress.

About four months ago, Sept. 17, 2011 to be exact, when it all began in New York City’s financial district, I was just your average Joe buzzing around for my next meal. But this ruckus is going on, right, so I land on a tent where humans are talking about things like the 99 percent rule, how they need to reclaim democracy from the greed of Wall Street, big corporations, banks and billionaires (Gates and Buffet notwithstanding). They’re ranting against economic and civil inequalities. Like how did a democratic and capitalist country like America, where every man could become a king, suddenly become more like an autocratic caste system?

I wanted to know more. My winged family members in Asia told me that the Occupy movement was inspired by the Arab Spring – you know, all those protest and resistance movements in places like Syria, Libya and Egypt. “Those folks forced out their leaders, brought down their governments and formed new democracies for their people,” my relatives said. Nice job.

But all I see in America is young people beating their drums, holding their placards, pitching their tents, yelling that they are mad as hell and aren’t going to take it anymore. Gotcha. But as the weeks and months go on, I don’t get where they’re going. I mean, where’s their business plan, what’s their strategy, who is their leader, when are they actually going to do something to bring about change? Where’s the beef?

Have they not noticed that city by city, the politicians are putting their armed police on the chess board and booting out the pawns from the public places they once occupied? Call me a bugger, but I get around like no one’s business. Just the other day, I flew to the Beltway and you should have heard the laughter from some of those legalized criminals who represent you in Congress, especially those up for reelection. They’re brushing you off like dust mites, my friends.

So here’s my advice. Get a voice, don’t become the New Silent Majority. Take a lesson from the Tea Party. That brew got up and running pretty fast and knocked out a few Democrats in fairly short order. The 2012 elections are around the corner but you still have time to fire the bums (Democrats or Republicans) by the dozens. Make your voice heard, get out your message and hoist that 1 percent square in the public’s face. What are you waiting for, an invitation to tea?

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