Tens Of Thousands Protest Right-Wing Policies In North Carolina
CREDIT: Planned Parenthood
Although you’re likely to have missed it in the mainstream media, there was a massive progressive protest this Saturday. A number as large as 80,000 to 100,000 progressive activists gathered in Raleigh, North Carolina to participate in the “Moral March on Raleigh,” to protest the extremely conservative agenda of Republican Gov. Pat McCrory and the state legislature. The event, organized by the state NAACP, featured activists from 32 states marching for a wide variety of issues: reproductive rights to voting rights, health care access, the environment and economic justice — all of which have been the target of the extremist political leadership in the state.
The event gained its momentum from the Moral Monday protests, weekly protests in North Carolina beginning in 2013. After being bankrolled by Art Pope, a multi-millionaire with close ties to the Koch Brothers, Republicans took over both chambers of the state legislature in 2010. And now this state — which Barack Obama won in 2008 and lost by just 2 points in 2012 — has been passing some of the most aggressively conservative legislation in the country.
Here is Esther Y. Lee with a look at some of these policies:
Since North Carolina Republicans took over both legislative chambers in 2010, legislators have eliminated a host of programs and raised taxes on the bottom 80 percent, repealed a tax credit for 900,000 working families, enforced voter suppression efforts, blocked Medicaid coverage, cut pre-Kindergarten funding, cut federal unemployment benefits, and gave itself the authority to intervene in abortion lawsuits.
Saturday’s protesters marched from Shaw University to the state capital. Take a look at some of the best photos from the day:
BOTTOM LINE: The Moral March On Raleigh is an inspiring demonstration of grassroots progressive activism. Progressives of all stripes are coming together to stand up for what we believe, and are fighting back against the outsized influence of well-heeled financiers taking over government against the will of the people.