Boulder activist Sally Powell-Ashby shares her experience of getting arrested as part of a sit-in during Wednesday’sDemocracy Spring events in Washington DC. Powell-Ashby says the activists are disappointed in the lack of coverage from the main stream media. “Corporate media is not here. This has been one of the biggest rallies evidently in DC in the last 10 years I’ve heard and yet it’s not being televised.”
4/13 Update: Rabia Roberts spoke with KGNU on Wednesday April 13th to give an update about the events happening in Washington DC as part of Democracy Spring. Scroll down to hear the update.
“This is the beginning; this isn’t the end of what we need to do. This is an awakening.”
Thousands of activists are arriving in Washington DC this week to participate in a series of sit-ins and other non-violent protests – calling for big money to be taken out of our political system and to ensure free and fair elections.
The campaign began on April 2nd with a march from the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia to Washington, D.C. Thousands have pledged to risk arrest between April 11th-18th in what organizers are saying will be one of the largest civil disobedience actions in a generation. Rabia Roberts is one of the Colorado protesters participating in Democracy Spring which she describes as an umbrella organization of over 100 mostly progressive organizations who have come together to focus on getting big money out of politics and to call for free and fair elections because “it unbalances our democracy.”
Roberts says people will receive a formal non-violent training before participating in the sit-ins. She says this type of mass participation in civil disobedience hasn’t happened since the civil rights movement in the 1960s. The Democracy Spring campaign has cited several pieces of legislation that would tackle money in politics and the erosion of voting rights including the Voting Rights Reinstatement Bill. Roberts says protestors need to focus on legislation as a tangible way to change the current status quo. “We have to look at precisely what are the bills, what precisely are we asking for? To just go out there and sit and say I don’t like how things are, that’s too careless.”
Rabia Roberts says that this week’s event is a jumping off point for similar actions around the country.
“This is the beginning; this isn’t the end of what we need to do. This is an awakening. The weekend is called Democracy Awakening. You have to start somewhere with whatever number of people in fact show up and that draws attention and then people begin talking about the issue and then they begin caring about the issue.”
Rabia Roberts spoke with KGNU on Wednesday April 13th to give an update about the events happening in Washington DC as part of Democracy Spring.
Roberts says that on Tuesday, about 150 older men and women were arrested on Tuesday in what was dubbed as Elders Day. Wednesday April 13th is the day the activists focus on racial justice “the training again will be non-violent training for people of color and for people who are sitting with them. Then we go and hear from speakers concerned with that issue and we’ll march again down to the Capitol and again, some people will sit down to be arrested and the rest of us will be there in support of them.”