January 3, 2011. “Corporations are not people,” has been a mantra of Occupy Seattle since the organization’s inception, and on Wednesday, Dec. 21, these words were committed to action. Joining a long list of similar actions taken by Occupy movements around the country and the Los Angeles City Council, a resolution was adopted and a portion of the text reads:
“Be it resolved that Occupy Seattle calls for the abolition of corporate personhood. We join the tens of thousands of people, grassroots organizations and local governments across the country in calling for an Amendment to the Constitution to firmly establish that money spent on political campaigns must allow for an equal voice for all people, that human beings, not corporations, have natural rights protected by the Constitution, and that the rights of human beings will never again be granted to artificial entities or property.”
To celebrate this call to action, Occupy Seattle will join national rallies on January 20th and 21st. The January 20th event will be a one day occupation of Federal courthouses across the country, referred to as “Occupy the Courts.” The Seattle event will take place outside of the U.S. District Court at 700 Stewart Street, starting at 11:00 AM. The January 21st event, “People Ignited Against Citizens United” will begin with a noontime rally at Westlake Park including speeches, music, and street theater, followed by a march at 2 PM which will end up at the Henry M. Jackson Federal Building, at 2nd Ave and Marion St.
The rallies will set in motion a public awareness campaign focused on corporate personhood and the Citizens United ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court, which granted corporations the same free speech rights as individual citizens. The rallies are permitted and a trained peacekeeping cadre of volunteers will be in attendance.
Formed on Oct. 1, 2011, Occupy Seattle is a leaderless movement of concerned Americans who have taken to occupying public spaces in order to focus our nation’s attention on the undue influence of large corporations on our government, elected leaders and our democracy itself. It is inspired by and modeled after the Occupy Wall Street movement.