By Mike C
There were a few events of interest in Tallahassee in the past week or so that should be noted:
Egypt Solidarity Demonstration 2/5/11
About a week an a half ago, a small crowed comprised of many TSO members stood at the Capitol to show their support for the Egyptian revolution. The demonstration was a last minute call for a rainy day and was well received by those driving by on the crowded intersection of Apalachee Parkway and Monroe St.
The demonstration was covered by the newspaper of the Florida A&M University, the FAMUAN:
It was a cold and rainy Saturday afternoon as protesters assembled on the Capital Lawn carrying handwritten signs reading, “Freedom in Egypt” and “We Support Egypt.”
Local residents and organizations held a solidarity rally to express their support for freedom in Cairo.
Anti-government protests, demanding economic and political changes, began in Egypt on Jan. 25.
Since then, tens of thousands of people are filling the streets of Cairo and other cities and have called for President Hosni Mubarak to resign after 30 years in power.
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,” a famous quote by Martin Luther King, Jr., helps to define one of the many reasons why American protesters are voicing their opinions.
“It should affect us all as Americans because it is what a truly American concept is about putting in a democracy,” said Alla Hadi, an Egyptian-American attending Florida State, whose family, and friends that are worried about what is going on in Egypt.
“We have to voice our support.”
This demonstration was held the same weekend as demonstrations across the country, from California, to New York City, Washington, DC. and South Florida all held similar events, as well as other Southern cities like New Orleans. (For more information on other demonstrations, check out the ANSWER Coalition’s article)
Public Hearing on Racist Immigration Bill 2/7/11
On February 7th, a public hearing was held to discuss the possibility of the introduction of a bill similar to the now infamous racist “SB1070” Arizona law that promotes racial profiling. As the Florida Progressive Coalition Blog reports, 90 percent of the speakers at the hearing were opposed to the prospect of such a bill with only 2 people speaking in favor of it during the entire event. Folks came from all over the state to voice their opposition to the bill as well as people from Tallahassee.
Here’s one example of the opposition voiced during the hearing:
Pro-Choice Action 2/17/11
Last but certainly not least was the recent visit to the Florida State campus by a group that attempts to equate abortion to genocide. Florida State students organized a counter demonstration to show that groups that go around attacking womens’ rights are not welcome on their campus and that opposition will be loud and heard. Chants like “When choice is under attack, What do we do? Stand Up, Fight Back!” were heard in a busy section of the FSU campus while those promoting their anti-choice message were attempting to spread their message of hate.
While the group that was traveling by may seem like a fringe group in its message, their visit to Tallahassee comes at a time when abortion rights are under attack by the Right-wing in America (including attempts to limit access, attacking Planned Parenthood).
The pro-choice counter-demonstrators outnumbered those anti-choice by dozens, and stayed until the anti-choice folks packed up for the day, opposition to their second day is expect as well. The student newspaper is also expected to run a story on the event.