During Obama’s visit to Richmond, a group of University of Richmond students took it upon themselves to organize a rally/protest against the Tar Sands Pipeline proposal. The protest was spontaneously. Activists had less than a week to organize a full scale rally.
They developed posters, media contacts, and connected to folks outside of the UofR Bubble. They even developed their own post event video for the project. This spontaneous yet efficiently organized event highlights the power of grass roots organizing and thinking. It doesn’t take months of planning or meetings with PR firms. It takes commitment, action, and simplicity.
This approach highlights the possibilities for queer activists. The organizers used Obama’s media entourage to express their concerns and ideas. I wondered where were the queers? Where were our protesters demanding to add ENDA to Obama’s new job plan?
These collegiate organizers give me hope that colleges will continue to be a centrifuge for social change. The people, and not the hallways of Washington teaming with lobbyists and career politicians, still represent the voice of the American people.