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MA Activist Predicts More Arrests in DC; This Time About Voting Rights

A local peace activist says police in Washington, D.C., should expect to cope with even more mass arrests next week as the Democracy Spring effort combines with Democracy Awakening to put the focus on voter suppression. (NH Rebellion)
A local peace activist says police in Washington, D.C., should expect to cope with even more mass arrests next week as the Democracy Spring effort combines with Democracy Awakening to put the focus on voter suppression. (NH Rebellion)
April 15, 2016

BOSTON - Police in Washington, D.C., should be prepared for an even bigger round of mass arrests on Monday, local advocates say, as Democracy Spring activists from Massachusetts and the nation call attention to voter suppression.

Dylan Lazerow, a national field organizer for Massachusetts Peace Action, said 700 people were arrested during the first week of the Democracy Spring Action in the nation's capital - and this week, he said, the arrests could be in the thousands as the movement attempts to shine a spotlight on the issue of voter suppression.

"In particular," he said, "speaking to the issue of blacks and other marginalized folks being shut out of the voting booth, as well as shut out of our democracy in its entirety, in terms of the way it has been set up."

Lazerow said one of the reasons there could be even more arrests next week is that two movements are combiningg their efforts. Both Democracy Spring and Democracy Awakening will be out in force on the Capitol steps on Monday, and that involves more than 250 groups including the NAACP.

Lazerow said he knows at least a dozen Bay Staters who have been arrested during the first week of protest.

"I think what we are showing is how people generally in this country can get engaged in politics, and do so in a way that puts their body on the line to demonstrate their commitment to the cause," he said, "when we know that we have a super-majority of people in the country who believe that big-money corruption ought to end."

Lazerow said the first week of protest centered on what he called the corrupting influence of big money in politics, and next will be all about voting rights and voter suppression.

More information about the protests is online at democracyspring.org.

Mike Clifford, Public News Service - MA