photos by Jerry Nelson
STATEMENT FROM LOCAL MOVEON.ORG ORGANIZERS
This Saturday, February 26, local WNC citizens, including teachers and other public sector workers, held a rally at Pack Square Park outside of the courthouse and city buildings to save the American Dream. The rally is being held in solidarity with Wisconsin workers who have been protesting, for nearly two weeks, against a bill that would take away workers’ ability to bargain collectively and cut vital public services.
The rally is part of a national day of action; events happening in all 50 state capitals are endorsed by 30 organizations, including: MoveOn.org, SEIU, PCCC, US Action/True Majority, Sierra Club, Color of Change, and Campaign for Community Change. For a complete list of endorsing organizations, please visit: www.moveon.org. At the rally, participants will protest the attack on worker’s rights and proposed dangerous budget cuts, and demand an investment in decent jobs. They will also highlight the fact that in Wisconsin, and across the country, Republicans are giving tax breaks to corporations and millionaires while cutting funding for education, police, emergency response, and vital direct services.
“We’re here today to stand in solidarity with Wisconsin workers and American families everywhere,” said Cheryl Orengo, MoveOn Asheville organizer, “After a devastating recession and hundreds of thousands of jobs lost, regular Americans cannot take another hit. Right now, the American Dream is slipping away for millions of us, and we’re here today to say enough is enough. It’s time for our government to work for us, and not just corporations and millionaires.”
STATEMENT FROM FIRESTORM CAFE AND BOOKS
Firestorm Cafe & Books stands in solidarity with Wisconsin public sector workers and their struggle against the state’s draconian attempt to strip them of collective bargaining rights. We have been inspired by the actions of teachers on unofficial strike, students who have walked out of class in their support and the thousands of workers who have seized the Capitol rotunda in Madison.
Witnessing demonstrators occupy the halls of power is truly a beautiful and welcome reminder that resistance is not just the work of movements abroad, but also here in North America. We hope Wisconsin’s workers, having spoken truth to power, will take some of that power back into their communities, where it rightly belongs, on their return home.
Wisconsin, we wish you the best in struggle but we believe that, no matter what happens in Madison, you have already set victory into motion. You have discovered, and shown us, that the power of a union lies in our hearts, our hands and our minds and not in the dictates of any law or government official.
We fully support the South Central Federation of Labor’s call for a state-wide general strike as part of Organised Labor’s mission to preserve the voices of workers. On Saturday, February 26th, we will join with local workers and activists at noon in Pack Square to share our vision of a society of liberated individuals and democratic work places.