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Call For A Nationwide Protest Against The Presidential Debate Exclusion

by Rev. S. Wilkerson Thursday, Sep. 21, 2000 at 8:54 PM

Call For A Nationwide Protest Against The Presidential Debate Exclusion

NOTE: This is a Call For A Nationwide Protest Against The Presidential Debate Exclusion.

The Protest is proposed to occur in cities and state capitals across the nation on October 1, the day Ralph Nader and Winona LaDuke will be in Boston at a MegaEvent/Protest Rally, before the 1st scheduled Gore-Bush Debate.

What I've heard the last few days is troubling. People are asking when do we need to get these petitions in to the Commission on Presidential Debates? Some say they should have been in already.

Others say - no, it's the 26th of Sep. Still another voice said - what difference does it make?

Janet Brown said on Pacifica Radio on Aug 31

that the debate structure was set in January, and all the cards and letters and petitions aren't going to make a bit of difference. So, I listened to that broadcast this morning (it's in the archives of

Democracy Now on Pacifica Radio), and it did sound very much like Janet Brown has insulated herself against hearing anything that doesn't conform to her pre-set notions about how the debates will happen.

What is going to get through to people like her? What will cut through the thick media fog that writes third party candidates off before they even have a chance to speak? How can we break through this corporate fence that keeps us from being able to enjoy our rights as citizens to hear the issues that face us in this election?

I think we have to take to the streets.

Just because you can't make it to Boston, doesn't mean you have to sit this one out.

I think each of our groups should organize a protest on the same day, so that it isn't just one or two groups out there, but folks all over the nation marching on their state capital, carrying banners, and protesting to our federal government that it has let us down by allowing these corporations to rule over us, by leaving out third-party candidates from the debates.

If we all organize protests on the same day - October 1, it will:

A) be a Sunday, so more people can come out;

B) coincide with Nader's Fleet Center appearance in Boston, which is a debate protest in itself;

C) garner media attention from all over the country, making people realize they have to take us seriously.

This will cause them to realize that it's not just a few people in a few places - it is a movement. It is a large grassroots movement, and we can mobilize and we will not stand still or sit around grumbling

about losing our chance for our candidates to debate. We will get up and march, and demand that third party candidates be allowed to participate in our democratic election process.

I feel that if we are going to protest because third

party candidates aren't going to be allowed into the

debates, then our protest should wholly reflect that.

I think that in order to gain the most media

attention, and to show solidarity among American

citizens, that we should take bold unexpected steps

forward. How can we do this?



The Green Party seems to be leading the way on this one, but if you're not Green then don't let that stop you, this is an issue that effects everyone.

A) Contact your local Green Party to see if they are planning or coordinating efforts in your area.

B) If your local Green Party isn't planning action, urge their participation and check with other the other third parties and local activist groups.

C) Talk to your group and urge them to get involved.

(If no group in your area is planning anything, why not try putting it together yourself? You might be surprised how quickly this gains momentum.)

D) Don't forget to contact the media. (If you need help dealing with the media, look at the A16 Media kit: )

E) On the day of the march, PRACTICE NON-VIOLENCE!

If this is something that we approach as upset

citizens, with many groups united, not only will we

receive the media attention we seek, but also we will

have the strength that founded our country; the

strength of the people.

Isn't that what all this is about anyway?

We don't have much time to get coordinated, so please start your efforts immediately. Together we can make a difference!

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