In 2006 when I saw the importance of what Democratic control of Congress could produce, I created the notion of miniprotesting, realizing that conservative-owned media wouldn't show progressive protests no matter how many people showed up. I figured that we had to take our message to the streets directly to show the poor misguided Donny Dittoheads the facts that would harpoon the arguments of Limbaugh and the like. I connected with MoveOn PDX, the Portland arm of MoveOn.org, and crafted the first miniprotest for the downtown area.
Fast forward to after the elections. I put the miniprotesting concept to sleep, thinking that surely Bush, Cheney, Rove, Yoo, and all the devious minds behind Bush's overreaching power grab would at last be held accountable. Justice would be served, the honor of the American dream would be restored. But I didn't foresee the willing weakness of the Democratic party, taking impeachment off the table and refusing to play a fistful of trump cards.
But then we got Obama. Change was all the rage. But then came, "We must look forward, not look back." What? Let the entire Bush regime get off scott free? Put the corporatist side of the Democratic party, the DLC, in as a strong part of Obama's team including White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel? Then came the GOP storm of filibusters, restricting the flow of liberal ideas into law down to a trickle. The progressive conversion of American politics was not as close to reality as I originally thought.
Then with the Supreme Court's radical decision in the Citizens United case, I knew that despite technically being out of power, the GOP would have the Democrats on the ropes in 2010 with trailers full of money to throw at contested races. So miniprotesting lives again, coming to the streets of San Fransciso's North Bay and with a little luck, or perhaps with your complete involvement, coming to a city or town near you. May it come to be a staple on the streets throughout America. Let it be commonplace on the roads leading to Capitol Hill as a daily reminder to Republicans that we are on to their lies and that they will ultimately hold a dark, dark place in American history. Miniprotesting needs to live out its moto: On the Streets We Are HOPE.
You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
if you have any comments, questions, requests, or news of miniprotests you've generated in your own home town.