Julia Riber Pitt | 08/06/2011
Just like the protesters in Madrid, the workers of Madison now have their tent city too.
Eighty years after Hoovervilles sprang up across the U.S. to push President Hoover into taking a more pro-active stance on the Great Depression, and four months after the spectacular occupation of Wisconsin’s state legislature, the Wisconsonites are back at it.
For the next two weeks, protesters will camp out near the Capitol to taunt the state’s Republican Governor, Scott Walker, and tout change.
Last February, Gov. Walker pushed through a far-reaching budget bill removing the collective bargaining rights of the state’s public sector workers. At the time, tens of thousands of protesters descended upon the State Capitol in Madison to protest the measures, prompting comparisons with the simultaneously ongoing uprising in Egypt.
This time around, the protesters willingly concede the symbolic nature of their statement. Yet the symbolism reveals a strength of character and a revolutionary spirit that’s hard to come by in the United States these days.
The people of Wisconsin will not back down in front of powerful corporate interests without staging a peaceful fight.
As CNN reports:
David Boetcher, one of Walkerville’s coordinators, said the aim is to recapture the spirit of Hoovervilles, the shanty towns that popped up and were named to tweak President Herbert Hoover’s perceived inaction in the Great Depression’s early years. Since Saturday night’s kick-off, about 80 tents have sprung up in and around State Street in Madison, with a handful of people sticking it out throughout but mostly fresh rounds of activists rotating through on a daily basis.
“Just like the original Hoovervilles in the 1930s, we wanted to create that type of atmosphere without being destructive,” said Boetcher, a government affairs coordinator for the IBEW union.
Here at ROAR, we would like to extend our heartfelt solidarity to our brothers and sisters in Wisconsin! One world, one struggle — we support you and will keep reporting your actions here in Europe!
Wisconsin activists set up ‘Walkerville’
Short URL: http://j.mp/m5diLK
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