News / USA

Protesters Converge on Tampa for Republican Convention

Protesters Converge on Tampa for Republican Conventioni
|| 0:00:00
X
Greg Flakus
August 28, 2012 11:14 AM
More than three years after the U.S. economy fell into deep recession, protesters outside the Republican National Convention point to what they call a continuing crisis of unemployment and homelessness. As delegates prepare to nominate Mitt Romney amidst a glitzy three-day party in Tampa, Florida, demonstrators camped out in the heavy rains of a tropical storm. VOA's Greg Flakus reports.
TEXT SIZE - +
Greg Flakus
TAMPA — More than three years after the U.S. economy fell into deep recession, protesters outside the Republican National Convention point to what they call a continuing crisis of unemployment and homelessness. As delegates prepare to nominate Mitt Romney amidst a glitzy three-day party in Tampa, Florida, demonstrators camped out in the heavy rains of a tropical storm.

So far, protesters marching on downtown Tampa's mostly deserted streets are outnumbered by police and news reporters. Police are telling protesters not to cover their faces or engage in threatening behavior. Though mostly peaceful, some still wear helmets and masks.
 
“It is for our own protection; basically, that is all it really is - to avoid being targeted as an individual,” one protester said.
 
They have come from around the country to camp out in parks and small lots like this rented space which they call “Romneyville.” The name alludes to homeless camps, called “Hoovervilles,” during the Great Depression, named after then-President Herbert Hoover. Camp organizer Bruce Wright says the name is appropriate, given the high unemployment rate and homelessness in the Tampa area.

“We have the same kind of foreclosure crisis today and the people in this camp are a mixture of homeless, formerly homeless, poor people, unemployed people and just different activist groups,” he said.
 
Camp residents have tried to help suffering locals like Thomas Diehl and his companion, Michelle Kelly.

“Right now they are trying to help us get food stamps, medical help for me and her, stuff like that,” Diehl said.

  • Occupy movement members march outside the Republican National Convention, Tampa, Florida, August 27, 2012. (E. Mazrieva/VOA)
  • Protesters outside the Republican National Convention, Tampa, Florida, August 27, 2012. (E. Mazrieva/VOA)
  • Protesters outside the Republican National Convention, Tampa, Florida, August 27, 2012. (E. Mazrieva/VOA)
  • Protesters outside the Republican National Convention, Tampa, Florida, August 27, 2012. (E. Mazrieva/VOA)
  • A protester with the Occupy Movement marches against the Republican National Convention, Tampa, Florida, August 27, 2012. (N. Pinault/VOA)
  • Security around the Occupy Movement protest outside the Republican National Convention, Tampa, Florida, August 27, 2012. (N. Pinault/VOA)
  • Protesters outside the Republican National Convention, Tampa, Florida, August 28, 2012. (J. Featherly/VOA)
  • A group protesting the Mormon church outside the Republican National Convention, Tampa, Florida, August 28, 2012. (J. Featherly/VOA)

While many say they are here to protest against Republican Party policies, quite a few express disdain for the political process in general. Alex Ramos is critical of President Barack Obama as well as Mitt Romney.
 
“He made a lot of promises that he has not kept," he said. "He promised to bring troops back home and he sent about 30,000 more overseas. He signed off on NATO to destroy Libya.”

Many here say politics is controlled by large corporations and wealthy donors.

"We have equal criticisms of Obama, okay, we're non-partisan. We're committed to the principal of justice for everyone," Bruce Wright said.  "Both parties are controlled by big money."

Protesters may have little opportunity to be heard by convention delegates.  Security is tight for several blocks around the convention sight and police boats patrol adjacent waterways.  Regardless of the security and the rain stirred up by Tropical Storm Isaac, the protesters say they intend to be here all week to present their view of what's wrong with the country.

You May Like

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

John the XXIII and John Paul II will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square on April 27 More

Thailand Reacts to Plots Targeting Israelis

Authorities hope arrest of two Lebanese suspects will disrupt plot to attack young Israeli tourists More

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

'Once Upon a Forest' takes viewers deep into heart of tropical rainforest More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Churchi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
Jerome Socolovsky
April 22, 2014 4:14 PM
On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video Pope Francis Hopes Dual Canonizations Will Reconcile Church

On April 27, two popes - John the XXIII and John Paul II - will be made saints in a ceremony at St. Peter’s Square. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky says the dual canonization is part of the current pope’s program to reconcile liberals and conservatives in the Roman Catholic Church.
Video

Video In Capturing Nature's Majesty, Film Makes Case for Its Survival

French filmmaker Luc Jacquet won worldwide acclaim for his 2005 Academy Award-winning documentary "March of the Penguins". Now Jacquet is back with a new film that takes movie-goers deep into the heart of a tropical rainforest - not only to celebrate its grandeur, but to make the case for its survival. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Boston Marathon Bittersweet for Many Runners

Monday's running of the Boston Marathon was bittersweet for many of the 36,000 participants as they finished the run that was interrupted by a double bombing last year. Many gathered along the route paid respect to the four people killed as a result of two bombings near the finish line. VOA's Carolyn Presutti returned to Boston this year to follow two runners, forever changed because of the crimes.
Video

Video Pacific Rim Trade Deal Proves Elusive

With the U.S.-led war in Iraq ended and American military involvement in Afghanistan winding down, President Barack Obama has sought to pivot the country's foreign policy focus towards Asia. One aspect of that pivot is the negotiation of a free-trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations. But as Obama leaves this week on a trip to four Asian countries he has found it very difficult to complete the trade pact. VOA's Ken Bredemeier has more from Washington.
Video

Video Robotic Mission Kicks Up Lunar Dust

A robotic mission to the moon was deliberately crashed onto the lunar surface late last week, but not before scientists had collected data gathered by the spacecraft which was designed to self-destruct. VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports on the preliminary findings of the craft, called LADEE - an acronym for Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer.
Video

Video Boko Haram Claims Responsibility for Bombing in Nigerian Capital

The Nigerian militant group known as Boko Haram has claimed responsibility for a bombing in the capital on April 14th that killed 75 people. In the video message, Abubakar Shekau, the man who says he ordered the bombing, says nothing about the mass abduction of more than 100 teenage girls, most of whom are still missing. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Abuja.
Video

Video Ukraine Developments Hang Over Obama Trip to Asia

President Barack Obama's trip to Asia this week comes as concerns over Beijing's territorial ambitions are growing in the region. Those concerns have been compounded by Russia's recent actions in Ukraine and the possibility that Chinese strategists might be looking to Crimea as a model for its territorial disputes with its neighbors. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video Autistic Adults Face Housing, Job Challenges

Many parents of children with disabilities fear for the future of their adult child. It can be difficult to find services to help adults with disabilities - physical, mental or emotional - find work or live on their own. The mother of an autistic boy set up a foundation to advocate for the estimated 1.2 million American adults with autism, a developmental disorder that causes communication difficulties and often social difficulties. VOA's Faiza Elmasry reports.
AppleAndroid