So tell me is this fair? We’ve got worker’s rights in the air, and Congress hasn’t put one jobs bill there.
What’s up, Boehner? Now I catch feeling that you don’t even care about a debt ceiling.
The only thing our Congress is doing is working to bring women’s rights to ruin.
We only need some jobs, not cuts. We’re not broke; America’s got bucks.
We should spend it on infrastructure; classes and not on these rich people’s taxes.
Give back to the people who’s hurting, because one thing is certain:
It’s time to march, it’s time to march, it’s time to march to take back America’s dream…
Attendees at the Take Back the American Dream conference piled into buses at high noon Wednesday and took their stand on the grounds of the Capitol, joined by hundreds of other demonstrators, from grassroots activists to dozens of unemployed people.
The above video tells the story better than words. The rally was dominated by the stories of the casualties of the class war conservatives are now waging on working-class and middle-class people. Among them were people like Linda Evans, a Washington D.C. resident who has been looking for work for two years. As she looks for work, she is also leading an arts organization that reaches out to low-income youth.
Just a 10-minute drive from the Capitol across the Anacostia River are neighborhoods that have some of the highest unemployment rates in the country. Knowing the depths of despair in those communities, and the lengths people are willing to go to just put a few dollars in their pockets in the absence of real economic opportunity, she asks Congress, “How can you sleep at night?”
Apparently quite well. And that’s the problem. Earlier this week, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor said that President Obama’s jobs bill would not be brought to the House floor for a vote. This is the same Republican leadership that when it seized control of the House from the Democrats that it would allow the House to “work its will” and be less heavy-handed in controlling what came to the floor. It’s no surprise that this is an empty promise, tossed aside to protect the portfolios of CEOs while the pockets of working-class people remain empty.
While the unemployed demanded Congress to pass “jobs, not cuts,” as thousands of people joined the Occupy Wall Street protests, and as thousands more join Occupy protests around the country, including Occupy K Street and Occupy D.C. protests that are gaining momentum today, presidential candidate Herman Cain gave could be read as the official conservative movement response. “Don’t blame the big banks,” he said. “If you don’t have a job and you’re not rich, blame yourself.”
Don’t blame a political system rigged to favor the top 1 percent and economically and politically disenfranchise the remaining 99 percent. It’s Shawn Wygert’s fault that he can’t get a job as a construction worker in Pittsburgh fixing the crumbling bridge that he passes every day, not the fault of the Republicans who are obstructing funding for road and bridge repair. It’s Tiffany Mellers’s fault that she’s come back from Iraq and can’t find a good job because she’s a reservist and employers are leery of hiring her, not because Congress won’t consider legislation that would guarantee good work for every soldier who returns from Iraq and Afghanistan. (The unemployment rate among veterans is nearly a percentage point higher than the national average.) It’s Linda Evans fault that she and thousands of other District residents are living in a city with an unemployment rate that jumped more than a full percentage point—now above 11 percent—during the summer, not the continuing refusal of Republicans to approve targeted aid to communities that have been abandoned by the corporate sector. (This National Journal photo gallery offers a window into the reality of life in the “other” Washington.)
Hear this, Herman Cain and the conservative movement: The victims of this Wall Street-induced recession are not taking the blame anymore. On Wednesday afternoon some 2,000 activists who were engaged in the Take Back the American Dream conference fanned out to their communities with new strategies and alliances, and renewed energy for building an independent movement intended to be disruptive of the nation’s politics.
“It’s time to march, time to march…”
Also see Dave Johnson’s post and slide show of the “Jobs Not Cuts” rally.