The Washington Post

A G-8 protest: Speeches and fair trade coffee

Jeremy Weyl, one of the speakers at the Occupy G-8 People's Summit, addresses a few dozen people in the audience. (Michael Rosenwald/The Washington Post)

What I’ve seen so far of the protests surrounding the G-8 Summit at Camp David:

About three dozen people and one dog occupied a community room at the Frederick County Public Library early Friday morning for a daylong series of talks entitled the “People’s Summit.” Nearly a dozen reporters and photographers joined them, either staying or quickly leaving.

“People all over the planet are waking up and joining a global movement,” Margot Flowers, one of the organizers of the summit and the co-leader of the group It’s Our Economy, told the group. The world, she said, was waking up to the notion that “human needs are more important than corporate greed.”

There were panels scheduled on global wealth inequality, sustainable resources, and building a new economy. One man wore a shirt that said “unarmed citizen.” Members of the postal workers union were also on hand to distribute flyers advocating saving the postal system. “What will you do if your post office closes?” the flyer asked.

But the postal message appeared to be just a side order to the more important meal about global inequality.

“Either we change this reality or this reality will crash the human race,” Sam Pizzigati, an associate fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies, told the group.

Refreshments included fair trade coffee with organic pure cane sugar. Also, ginger snaps from Trader Joe’s.

Michael Rosenwald is a reporter on the Post's local enterprise team. He writes about the intersection of technology, business and culture.


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