My First Protest at Netroots Nation – UPDATED! It Worked!

NN water update


Look at this email that just arrived in my inbox!! This is HUGE!


Well, I am spoiled now, aren’t I?


Netroots Nation 14 – My First Protest!

On Friday the 18th in Detroit, the Netroots Nation attendees added their voices to a planned protest against the water shut offs in Detroit. I joined in to what was my first ever march or protest. I didn’t carry a sign because I wanted to take pictures, but I did chant “Fight! Fight! Fight! Water is a Human Right!” Here’s some of my pictures:


This was also the first protest march for my buddy Bill – he was INTO it!


Hey, when The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) tells you to march, you MARCH! Also, yes, I was that close and yes, he was looking right at me (swoon!) 🙂


The atmosphere was really fun.



We wound up at the base of this obelisk in Hart Plaza – there was supposed to be a stage but the police took it away – so the organizers improvised.


Some of my NN family – Vicki, Pam & Norm.




The best part is that the protest made a difference. Because so many of us went out there, the march got much more widespread media coverage and the water official who had previously refused to meet with the leaders of the movement promised a meeting the following Monday. And then they put a 15 day hold on water shut offs! Apparently they conceded that the programs available to low income households were not well known so they stopped the process to allow the folks in danger of losing their water to make payment arrangements. Basically they were shutting off water without properly offering up any other options. In the meantime a really cool thing happened on twitter when two folks wondered if they could find a way to connect generous donors with needy households – yes, they could (more protest information & photos at that link)! Click here to help out!

I get that services need to be paid. But, I also believe that water is perhaps more basic than anything to people and one would hope that a balance between need and sustainability can be found. It’s pretty disgraceful when the UN declares a humanitarian crisis in one of the largest cities in the wealthiest country in the world.