Art and Protests

“Everything is art. Everything is politics.” -Ai WeiWei

Felt compelled to go my first protest at Union Square in Manhattan this weekend. I almost didn’t. If given the choice, I would rather NOT be the person behind the bullhorn shouting for reform. My younger self might have enjoyed that attention and sense of conviction. My present self feels the need to hear both ends of any issue. I decided to get information on the issues surrounding the NYC March Against Monsanto because the whole idea of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) in our food supply didn’t sit well with me. Our country’s leaders seem to feel it’s just fine. Many people there attributed GMOs to Colony Collapse Disorder in bees throughout the world. So, I went and took photos of the protest, the signs, the costumes, the ways people got their message across. Here’s what I saw…

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This banner was made with seeds which are in danger of being genetically modified as a way to repel insects among other things. The bees which help to pollinate are significant in the banner since they have been dying off en masse since GMOs have been introduced.

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I thought the “Unarmed Civilian” statement was notable given the way protesters had been treated in the past during the Occupy Wall Street days. She was ready though and the protest commenced peacefully without interference from the NYPD.

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Bravely announcing on the bullhorn!

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“Bee” the change!

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Waiting with signs to begin the long walk through the city. Some individuals gave out handmade signs that they created for those who didn’t have any. Many of the signs were very colorful, like the ones below.

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And the march began.

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Not everyone felt the need to grab the bullhorn and shout. All people, outgoing and shy, were concerned about our food. We gave our support in a way that fit within our comfort levels. Some were uber creative while others were direct, clear, not loud but equally powerful. At the very least, I felt I could share my photography to get people wondering, questioning, and finding answers on their own.

7 thoughts on “Art and Protests

  1. I’ve never been to a protest before either. I often find crowds intimidating anyway, so my hat is off to anyone who can be amongst all of that without feeling overwhelmed. It’s a very important issue too. We should be more alarmed at the decline in the bee population really. That is NOT good news for the planet.

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    1. Thanks for understanding. I don’t mean any disrespect to those who are willing to put themselves out there for a cause. But yeah, I don’t handle crowds too well even though I’m from a big family. However, I felt like it was an issue worthy of a post. I know the major news sources won’t cover it either. That’s the sad part.

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