Last Saturday was Patriots’ Day, and the NH Rebellion celebrated in style - by walking the talk for democracy and asking the question at the biggest gathering of 2016 candidates yet. Nearly 100 people participated along the 15-mile route, and between the historical reenactments and the hamburgers, a good time was had by all.
A spirited group of walkers started the morning in Lowell, Massachussetts at the Pawtucket Congregational Church. Paul Revere, played by our own Ellen Read, led them north from under the church’s ringing Revere bell. We were all grateful for the hospitality of the Pawtucket congregation and their Reverend, Ruth Richards.
The walkers enjoyed sunny skies on their way to Nashua City Hall, where they were overjoyed by the crowd awaiting them. At first, King George III tried to steal the microphone and praise how thoroughly the American campaign finance system concentrates political power in the the hands of an oligarchic elite, but he was soon put in his place when Paul Revere came riding into the square to raise the cry "The fat-cats are coming!" and call on the assembled patriots to put an end to systemic corruption once and for all in 2016. Paul Revere was followed by 15 year-old walker Ella McGrail, whose stirring adaptation of Henry Longfellow’s poem inspired the assembled crowd to continue Revere's patriotic cause in our time. Jeff Clements, co-founder of Free Speech for People, also spoke about the growing national movement to stop the corrupting influence of money in politics after Citizens United.
When the group departed for the Crowne Plaza hotel, the walkers stretched for several blocks. Some carried signs, others carried flags. Many wore patriotic Paul Revere hats, and all lent their voices as we approached the presidential summit. Intrigued by the commotion, much of the local and national media attending the summit came out to hear us, and Paul Revere was able to deliver our anti-corruption message to a broad audience.
After all that hard work, the walkers deserved a celebration, and they had one just across the street from the presidential summit. We grilled burgers and hotdogs, enjoyed Ben & Jerry’s, and marvelled at the Stamp Stampede’s Amend-o-Matic Stanpmobile before packing up the flags and calling it a day. A huge thank you to all of the walkers and drivers who made this latest march for democracy a success! Check out pictures, video, and media coverage.
Get ready to march again on Memorial Day Weekend, July 4th, and beyond (details coming soon)!