Friday, July 07, 2017

Democratic House Candidate Arrested For Protesting Health Care Repeal


A few weeks ago we mentioned that Tom Wakely had decided not to seek the Democratic nomination for Texas' 21st Congressional District. I know Tom well enough that won't be the last time we'll be hearing from him. But it left us in a quandary about a candidate in an important district with a vulnerable and villainous incumbent and a DCCC recruit who has every marking of a disaster: a rich, "ex"-Republican, Joseph Kopser, widely disliked in Austin by progressives and activists. Just right for the DCCC-- and for anyone hoping to see Lamar Smith serve for another couple of years.

Blue America is still looking at the various candidates running for the nomination but Derrick Crowe is certainly the stand-out so far. He's a former congressional staffer for senior Democrats who left D.C. in 2008 over objections to the militarized lens through which even they viewed the world at the time. He’s a climate change action organizer who organized Stop Trump protests the night he won the Republican nomination, as well as during his visit to Austin. In addition to climate change activism, Derrick is a regular fixture at local health care rallies and protests, as well as those held to support immigrant rights and combat "show me your papers" laws like SB4 in Texas. I asked him to introduce himself to DWT readers with a guest post-- which he wrote right after being arrested.

TX-21 Needs A Change Of Direction In Congress
-by Derrick Crowe

Health care bills don’t kill people. I shouldn’t have to spell that out, but these days, you can put forward a bill that cuts taxes for very rich people by letting millions of people get sick, go bankrupt, and die due to lack of health care-- and get away with calling it the “Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA, the Senate version of the GOP’s Affordable Care Act repeal).”

In the 21st Congressional District of Texas alone, 54,000 nonelderly people will lose insurance coverage under the ACA repeal as passed by the House, and the Senate bill appears very similar in this respect. In addition, 83,509 people still lack health coverage in Texas 21. We should be talking about how to get all of these people health care, but instead, if this BCRA passes, we will let huge numbers of them die each year so that people like Trump and his family can have a tax cut.

The people of this district deserve someone that will stand up for them when politicians and corporations abuse them this way. That’s why I’m running for Congress, and that’s why I just participated in a nonviolent act of civil disobedience outside Senator John Cornyn’s office.

In fact, as you’re reading this, I’m probably under arrest.

This is probably the best way to introduce myself to you. Yes, I’m a former staffer for Democrats in Congress and a veteran of some tough congressional races. Yes, I’ve owned and operated a small business I started with my wife in Austin. But at my core, I’m an organizer and an activist for nonviolent social change. I believe that we’re in a revolutionary time in the U.S., and that playing it safe could mean losing our democracy.

We’re running a different type of campaign here in Texas 21, one that stands shoulder-to-shoulder with working people who are literally fighting for their lives under Trump and the GOP Congress. We’re not taking corporate PAC money, and you can expect us to keep finding ways to fight for what we believe in from the podium and in the streets. When Republicans want to kick 22 million people off of health care and let almost 100,000 people die per year due to lack of care, we’re called upon to take some risks.

Stand with us: Join our campaign to help us fight for health care for everyone in this country.

Today, I joined a several local groups (ADAPT, Central Austin People Power, the Austin chapter of the Democratic Socialists of America, Indivisible Austin, Left Up To Us, Our Revolution Central Texas, Our Revolution North Austin, Texas Alliance for Retired Americans-Austin, Texas Drought Project, and others) at a rally at noon today in front of Cornyn’s office to urge him to vote against the repeal of the Affordable Care Act.

And then, at about 12:20 p.m., a handful of us blocked the sidewalk, drawing a line against the attack on our families represented by this bill. Blocking pedestrian traffic resulted in our arrest.

No one arrested the senator, though, whose office 15 floors above us has been dedicated recently to passing a bill to let thousands and thousands of us die each year.

Because Cornyn and Smith act on behalf of very wealthy interests, I also want to address the corporate bosses, monopolists, and economic royalists directly: You’ve just picked the fight of your lives.

You can have your yachts. You can have your mansions. You can have your big companies and your big bank accounts. But you can’t have our neighbors, and you can’t have our lives. We will fight to save our families and neighbors. We’re going to beat you.

And then we’ll pass Medicare for All.

Derrick Crowe is a progressive Democrat running for Congress in Texas’s 21st District. He’s running against a climate-change-denying, Trump-backing supporter of the Republican health repeal.

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At 4:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love the hapless dreamers who chase lost causes.


At 9:02 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The American SA is in it's larval stage. Actor James Cromwell was just sentenced to a week in jail for protesting. The police beat the shit out of hundreds of Occupy protesters in Oakland and elsewhere to suppress that. And for BLM, the police and Nazis are a constant threat of lethal force.

Nobody shrieks louder than the Nazis when the left hits back, though. And the media coverage is certainly slanted to the left being the bad guys.

What a shithole.

At 7:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How much abuse can the people take from the Democrats before giving up on the Party happens? There can be no change until a real opposition arises - and the Democratic Party is being well-paid to prevent that.

Right, Barry? How's that Hyde Park LIEbury coming???


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