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WATCH: National People's Summit Rally and Demonstration in front of the RenCen

WATCH: National People's Summit Rally and Demonstration -- Part Two

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Wednesday, 17 June, 2009 6:35 PM

National People's Summit holds demonstration at RenCen; speakers at Tent City

PHOTO BY GARRETT GODWIN / ©AMERICAJR.com

Protestors outside the Renaissance Center on June 16, 2009.

by Garrett Godwin
ggowin82@yahoo.com

 

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DETROIT -- A demonstration was held Tuesday afternoon outside the GM Renaissance Center, where the National Business Summit was being held. It was picketed by the National People's Summit, whose theme that day was "Stop the war on the workers and poor - feed the people, not the Pentagon!". They were marching and chanting with "No jobs, no peace!", "No justice, no peace!".

One of the speakers at the business summit that day was Former Governor John Engler, who is named one of the enemies by the summit and Tent City stationed at Grand Circus Park on Woodward and Adams. Engler is both the president and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers. He is "hated by the workers and the poor throughout the state for his legacy of racism, welfare gutting, cutbacks and attacks on unions."

"The People's Summit was organized and initiated by the Moratorium NOW Coalition to stop foreclosures and eviction," said Jerry Goldberg, an organizer of the National People's Summit. "When we heard there was going to be a National Business Summit with the major CEOs of all the corporations convened in Detroit. We said we have to answer that. We thought they have a lot of gull these CEOs whose shutting plants, laying off people, tossing people out of their homes. What we were going to organize a people's response of the workers and the poor, those suffering from plant closures and layoffs."

To them, the National Business Summit is all about getting to the bottom line: banks, businesses, and corporations learning to satisfy their greed as well as getting the economy back on the track their way -- while getting rich off the suffering of the working class, the middle class, the needy, and the oppressed.

"I'm here to support the People's Summit, the other side of the business summit," said Bill Meyer of Hamtramck, Mich., who participated in the demonstration. "I'm not one of the organizers but I'm a strong supporter of it. Our country's in desperate shape right now. We're going down the tubes this country. We've got to do something about it. Everyone's affected by what goes on in the economy in the U.S. The whole world is feeling effects of our economic meltdown here."

The National People's Summit, which concluded on Wednesday, is based on the legacy of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: his advocacy of civil rights, racial equality, and social justice for all. Though independent of his Poor People's Campaign, the principle and the results are the same: the focus of education, housing, health care, job loss and rise of unemployment, and having an Economic Bill of Rights. So, it is up to the people, to join the good fight of freedom, liberty, and peace against what it seems to be an corrupt system.

"I support the workers and the unions and the poor people, the homeless and the unemployed," said Michael Whitty, a University of Detroit Mercy professor who participated in the demonstration. "We're trying to change the way people are treated. We believe that people come before profits. We should give up the creed of greed. The real danger is Wall Street piracy not Somali piracy. We've been taken to the cleaners by the power elite. We want to take our power back."

Still, in the end, like Dr. King, we must all learn to overcome, break down barriers, find common ground, and work together to bring a world divided into one.

"We've been camped out in downtown Detroit since Sunday," said David Sole, an organizer of the event and UAW member. "We've had a People's Summit to oppose the rich and famous summit going on. The people who have already ruined America, the big CEOs, the bankers, plant closers. We're the victims of that. We're meeting to plan our own future. We're not going to let them plan our future. We're fighting back and organizing. We're working on a people's agenda, people's economic program that includes reopening the plants, taking billions of dollars that the government gave these crooks. We believe a job is the right of every person."

For more information, visit www.peoplessummit.org.

 

PHOTO BY GARRETT GODWIN / ©AMERICAJR.com

The National People's Summit holds a demonstration in response to the National Business Summit, which is being held inside the Marriott at the Renaissance Center.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

Protestors are holding signs to stop the war, stop foreclosures and help the people.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

A demonstration is held in downtown Detroit to save the people, not the banks.

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

This sign reads: "Detroit needs a Bailout"

 

PHOTO BY JASON RZUCIDLO / ©AMERICAJR.com

AmericaJR.com's Garrett Godwin interviews Michael Whitty, a U of D Mercy professor who joined the rally.

 

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