Saturday, June 19, 2004

the poor fight back



In what has to be one of the coolest nonviolent protests ever, homeless and poor people are banding together to fight Bush policies by setting up "Bushvilles" across the country where poor people gather to build tents and raise visibility and awareness of their conditions. In a country where it's increasingly difficult, if not impossible, to find a job, where it's equally impossible to count the true numbers of homeless and jobless and the percentage keeps increasing despite the lies of the Bushitos (can't eat just one!) this kind of action is desperately needed to remind people that Bush's decisions affect more than people in Iraq. How many more Americans will be beggared before we work to meet their need?

The news media have been strangely silent about this - perhaps because, despite high feelings, it's still less controversial to talk about the effects of Bushonomics on far-away Iraq than to focus on the problems he's caused at home, especially since it's very embarrassing for a previously inattentive media to admit their culpability. I'm not, like some people, going to scream and shout "I told you so" at the New York Times, but their example in the case of Judith Whoever and Ahmad Chalabi only demonstrates how difficult it is for them to reverse their tracks in the middle of a story. They're like beginning writers who hate to self-edit. In any case, only small-town newspapers have carried any stories about this - and, of course, foreign newspapers. But this movement is going to carry across America, and it deserves far more attention; indeed, it demands such attention.

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