On February 5th, around 75 protesters lined the street with signs declaring “Fight the Lie” and others in opposition to the right-to-work legislation being passed. The right-to-work legislation declares that being part of a union is no longer a requirement when being hired. Up to this point, one was forced to join a union, pay dues, and could be up for termination if the union rules weren’t upheld–although the employee might not have violated any of the employer’s rules.
To protesters, the Super Bowl seemed a perfect time to make their statement. For the Super Bowl fans, however, there was most likely confusion. Why were their picketers on the biggest game day? Who were these people? MSNBC ignored it completely. Yes, they have the freedom of speech that should be respected whether it is shared with the Super Bowl or not. Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard is quoted as saying that “unions had been part of the four-year planning process that brought the Super Bowl to the city.” So, he was not against the protest, and believed they had every right to be there.
Participants of the movement conjectured that members of the NFL league would even join the parade! I believe the OSB movement had a very neutral impact on the NFL. While it was smart of them to get publicity with the NFL, I don’t think they have anything to do with each other and it was a strange combination. There were some arrests made, so I think that it could have been viewed negatively and it honestly shouldn’t have happened in the first place.
If I was a part of this movement, I would have stuck with Occupy Wall Street. They are the target audience and the listening ears that need to hear the message. Super Bowl fans don’t have any interest in the protest, and bringing an issue at the wrong time can really detract from the importance of a cause. I personally am all for the right-to-work legislation. But, I would have given the protesters more respect and attention if they had appropriately placed their parade.