Occupy the Courts! Dr. Cornel West Speaks in Gainesville on Jan. 20

by Nancy Jones and Tommy Baker of Move to Amend gainesville

Grassroots movements across the country are gaining momentum at a rate unprecedented in modern times, due largely to Occupy Wall Street.

Ending “Corporate Personhood” with a Constitutional amendment is one such national movement that has taken root in Gainesville, where we’ve recently started a new local chapter of the national Move to Amend organization.

On Jan. 21, 2010, the U. S. Supreme Court took an extreme step to further remove American citizens from the election process by allowing corporations to spend unlimited amounts of money on political campaigns. The Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission (FEC) court ruling was the culmination of efforts by the wealthiest individuals to hijack the people’s government and increase their power and wealth.

The 2012 presidential election is expected to have the most extravagant spending of any election in history. Kantar Media, a company that tracks advertising, reported $5.8 million spent on TV ads in the Iowa Republican primaries prior to Dec. 30, most of those being negative attack ads.

The ruling not only equates money to speech but also makes it federal law under the U.S. Constitution that corporations have the same 1st Amendment rights intended for people (“Corporate Personhood”). Corporations are amassing more wealth than ever before in history, and it is time to push back. Efforts being taken locally include a protest, “Occupy the Courts”, at the Bo Diddley Plaza in downtown Gainesville on Friday, Jan. 20 at 1 p.m., the day before the second anniversary of the court ruling. This event is particularly exciting because Dr. Cornel West, a long-time civil rights activist and national best-selling author, will be speaking.

To find out more or to be a part of the local chapter of Move to Amend, attend the rally, visit Facebook’s MovetoAmend Gainesville page, or send an email to MoveToAmend@gmail.com. Help end corporate personhood and bring democracy to “We the People.”

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