sustaining solidarity


why did I decide on October 4 to fly to Washington DC the next day?

Because, in recognition of the role Wisconsin played in sparking the October 2011 Movement, organizers asked Wisconsin participants to kick off their occupation of Freedom Plaza on October 6. I just had to be there to join with their movement to protest corporate greed and stand for social justice and democracy.

It was a thrill for me to march into the plaza with many other Wisconsinites, our flags, banners, heart balloons and heads held high. (So many cameras! I've never felt like such a rock star . . .)

I had just a day in Freedom Plaza. During that one day, I spoke with people who had traveled to DC from eighteen states. Each person thanked me profusely for Wisconsin’s response to Scott Walker’s unprecedented power grab in February. I usually answered, “We couldn’t help ourselves! We didn’t make a plan to stand up and fight back. A gut-level response to injustice welled up in each of us and sent us out into the streets. I’m so happy that many of you seem to feel that same indignation.”

On the other hand, what Wisconsin citizens have done since last winter has been more calculated. Once we discovered solidarity, once we connected and discovered the strength we have together, we took on the impossible—an historic recall of six senators, a Solidarity Singalong for 200 days in the Capitol rotunda, the work of exposing ALEC and following Walker wherever he goes with our protests. Most importantly we learned that the joy of fighting together is so much better than anger and apathy alone.

Now brave Wisconsin activists have scattered to occupations around the country to help others who will discover solidarity and sustain it. This video is filled with my photos from Oct 6 in Freedom Plaza and contains my message to Occupiers everywhere.

I made a 3-minute video called To Occupiers Everywhere

From Wisconsin based on my trip to D.C.