More than 70 activists including an interfaith coalition of clergy with the Poor People’s Campaign were arrested on Pennsylvania Avenue near the Capitol Monday afternoon in a protest for wage, voting, and immigration issues faced by low-income workers.
“We’re not violent,” said Rev. Dr. William Barber to Capitol Police’s Lt. Ryan Schauf.
Rev. Barber implored him not to send activists to jail amidst pandemic.
Lt. Schauf said those with enough arrest history (as Rev. Barber has) would go to jail.
Ultimately, the 70+ activists including Poor People’s Campaign Co-Chair Rev. Dr. Liz Theoharis were arrested and processed on-site at the Capitol.
“Wherever there’s been a long train of abuse and usurpations by despotism, the people have a right and a duty to throw off that form of government and to alter the direction of the nation,” said Rev. Dr. William J. Barber II in a speech ahead of the direct action.
Rev. Dr. Barber specifically called out politicians over the increase in poverty amidst the pandemic when paired with 2 trillion in new wealth generated for billionaires during the same time period.
The group is expected to return Tuesday for a direct action specifically targeting Senator Manchin.