Topical Storm Romney Hits Tampa plus: Walter Tamosaitis on 'The Hanford Surprise'
Look Who's In Town, Tampa!
How to spot an Anarchist Squat
The Service Employees International Union's application to the city to hold a rally says: "We are seeking to hold a rally for political expression, highlighting the importance of creating good jobs in America while preserving and strengthening working standards, dignity in the workplace and quality of life for families. This will be an opportunity to send elected officials and political candidates a message that job creation and economic equality are top priorities for workers."
Black Bloc, Anon Bloc, Tampa Bay Action Committee, RNC Welcoming Committee, and other loosely organized anarchist groups have shown up at past conventions and other major public events and typically are known for violence and vandalism. Black Bloc members wear all black and spark confrontations with police. A YouTube posting by the Tampa Bay Action Committee promises lots of anarchists will come to Tampa. The video says this: "Black Bloc and Anon Bloc tactics are being encouraged because some say liberal protests get nothing done … If you hope to 'peacefully' protest your rights, you will be respected by radicals. If you are into social warfare, look for a group of people dressed in black."
Doctors for America has been mobilizing all summer and will stage rallies in Tampa and Charlotte, "to make sure politicians and the public get our message," says the organization's website. The message is this: "We need a system where everyone can get healthcare when they need it and where patients and health care providers are leading the way."
March on the RNC's website says its demands are for good jobs, healthcare, affordable education, equality and peace. "Say 'no' to the Republican agenda; money for human needs, not for corporate greed. We have had enough of the endless attacks on the rights of working people and our standard of living. We will defend Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security."
Pray Tampa Bay is amassing the faithful to pray nonstop during the RNC and the DNC in Charlotte, N.C., the first week in September. The group has put out a call for people to sign up and choose a 15-minute time slot during the convention to pray. "It is as if the Lord is bringing the nation's leaders to these cities so that we may build a house of prayer over them," the group's website says. "Our nation and its leaders are in need of God's wisdom and guidance."
Morning in America plans to create an ice sculpture spelling out "Middle Class" at 10 a.m. at Lykes Gaslight Park on Aug. 27. "This event is a photo-video shoot documenting the installation, presentation and disappearance of an ice sculpture," says an application to reserve the space. "The event continues until the ice disappears." The idea is to illustrate the melting of the middle class.
The Florida Consumer Action Network seeks to be the voice of consumers on a variety of issues ranging from healthcare to voting rights and is staging a march against voter suppression. "The Florida Consumer Action Network is a grassroots organization which empowers citizens to influence public policy by organizing and educating in areas where consumer voices are underrepresented," its website says.
Planned Parenthood, headquartered in New York, champions women's rights, including reproductive and health care issues and asked for a permit to hold a rally in Centennial Park on Aug. 29. Affordable birth control and abortion rights are among the issues backed by Planned Parenthood. Both are frequent targets of politicians espousing family values.
Coptic Christians Against Persecution plans to rally against persecution of Christians, particularly in the Middle East and Egypt. "All the event will involve is just that some of the participants may be holding signs," according to the organization's petition to the city to hold a rally. "The verbiage on such signs will be decent and will draw attention to the cause of the assembly."
Fight Back Florida is affiliated with March on the RNC and plans to stage a demonstration "to peacefully protest the Republican agenda and to demand jobs, healthcare, education, equality and peace."
West Central Florida Federation of Labor has filed petitions to participate in five First Amendment parades, one a day, Sunday though Thursday of the convention. The West Central Florida Federation of Labor is the AFL-CIO Central Labor Council that represents union members from 33 different international unions in 12 counties on Florida's West Coast.
CODEPINK's website says: "CODEPINK is a women-initiated grassroots peace and social justice movement working to end U.S. funded wars and occupations, to challenge militarism globally, and to redirect our resources into health care, education, green jobs and other life-affirming activities."
Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign has affiliations with the Occupy movement and recently set up a tent town near downtown called "Romneyville." The group's website says it is planning a "March for the Poor, Homeless and Unemployed" at the RNC on the afternoon of Aug. 27. Demonstrators will call for stopping all foreclosure actions, criminalization of the poor and homeless. "Housing and food are human rights," the website says.
ResistRNC's website says: "We are not affiliated with any political party, including the Democrats, and we stand in solidarity with the planned protests at the DNC in Charlotte. Both parties are intricately tied to corporate rule, war, economic injustice and profess freedom and democracy but crack down on dissent. The entire system in which we're currently living is rooted in greed and power, and keeps us from realizing our full potential. The pursuit of wealth has taken over our entire way of life and has done so at the expense of humanity and the earth."
Food Not Bombs is holding its World Gathering event the week before the convention at the Voice of Freedom Park in West Tampa, which is home to the Occupy Tampa movement. The pre-convention event culminates with a plan to dish out food on Saturday, Aug. 25 and offer free entertainment at the Market on Seventh in Ybor City. During the convention, Food Not Bombs plans on feeding as many protesters as it can with donated food.
How to Spot a Nest of Anarchists:
The Hillsborough County Floriida Sheriff's Office is asking the locals to watch out for anyone taking over vacant homes during the Republican National Convention. Sherriff's Detective Larry McKinnon says there are at least four red flags for squatters that you should watch for:
1) Numerous people suddenly moving into a vacant home or business.
2) Tents erected within backyards or uncommon areas.
3) Anarchist graffiti on boarded up buildings or public places.
4) Making flags to represent their cause.
The Sheriff's Department says if you see such activity, please contact them.
Oh, we will! We definitely will....
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