Organizing a Protest
The Guide To How To Save The World: Organizing a Protest
Part of the Guide to Saving the World
By Kemer Stevenson
Much like a good pair of Ray Ban’s, protesting never loses its hip style.
Modern societies way of publicly expressing a display of disapproval of events, policies, or circumstances.
If the news has taught us anything, it’s that people will find a reason to protest just about anything. Nothing makes people more upset than… well, everything apparently. Clearly the best way to express your indignant outrage is in the most public fashion possible.
But gone are the days of soapboxes and megaphones being an effective means of communication. Like a good viral video, today’s protests require planning and organization. Here’s a step-by-step guide to how any aspiring luddite can achieve greatness.
In order for your cause to be considered worthwhile, it must contain at least one of the following: the underprivileged, an ethnic minority, or an otherwise exploited party.
Should your movement not include one of the aforementioned, all hope is not lost. Fortunately, we live in America, the “land of free speech.” Just because you say something out loud, doesn’t make it true. BUT — If you say it over and over again… it very well could be.
TWO: Corporate backing
Yes, whether you like or not, we’ve now come full circle. Think of it as fighting fire with fire.
The fact is, you’ll find yourself quickly gaining momentum at an extremely quick rate with the help of a brother-in-arms with deep pockets. So long as you’re willing to share the successes and take responsibility for the failures, corporations give us easy access to a media outlets, public relations specialists, lawyers, and a handful of other handy trade-crafts.
Of course, sell-out is among the dirtiest of words. No one wants to be seen as a traitor. That’s why healthy capitalism invented shell corporations. Now you can hide behind the guise of a legal onion!
THREE: Location, location, location
Extremely high visibility is absolutely the cornerstone of maximum impact in your campaign.
This DOES NOT need to be on the premise of your despised entity… or even anywhere remotely related to it. Just make sure you’re being seen in the most pronounced and obnoxious way possible.
FOUR: The media IS the message
It should be obvious that alerting local news media is a good thing. Local, is … well, limited. You want to demonstrate that such an injustice has taken place that you deserve the attention of the entire nation.
First, remember… if it bleeds, it leads. Come up with a short phrase equating something about your cause to murder. That’ll open eyes and ears.
Next, micro-message. Broadcast your message across every social network, blog, and website you have even the smallest connection to. Better yet, make a few. Domain registration is only a few bucks.
Back in the day, there was a saying, “the thicker the binding, the more credible the content.” Not anymore. Now all that matters is how many times you can you get your message to show up on someone’s smartphone.
Lastly… timing. Pick a slow news week for execution. It’s astounding what communication majors will exploit when boredom sets in. Makes you wonder how different things would be if Windows still shipped with solitaire.
No one screams “violation of rights” louder than a union. Throw a stone and it’s likely your local union rep will jump in front of it. Bonus points if they show up to your event wearing apparel dawning an American flag.
SIX: Assembling the troops
You’re going to need people to show up at the picket lines. Fortunately, everyone wants nothing more than to fit in. We love an excuse to carry senseless signs, paint faces, play hide-and-go-seek with our voices, and chase tails.
Making something sound cool has the profound ability to turn any modern day LCD socialite into a screaming, chanting lemming. What’s cool? Try lacing your recruiting efforts with empty buzzwords. Here’s some of the more popular: activist, socially-conscious, peace, restraint, violent, reform, and freedom.
SEVEN: Loud and proud
Embrace your first amendment right to stand with a group of people on a public sidewalk. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a permit.
Use dramatic signage. Use colors so neon bright they promote traffic accidents from careless passing-by drivers. Hey, if someone wrecks, maybe extra news crews will show up. Select a phrase or saying with the intent of causing controversy. This will get you extra media attention. It doesn’t matter if you actually believe God hates [insert hot-button stereotype here]… it’ll get you the attention you deserve.
Be prepared for the cops to show up. Remember it’s is your constitutional right to protest in public areas. You can not be legally arrested for trespassing on public property for protesting.
Getting yourself arrested or detained by police could be of great use to the publicity of your protest. Everyone loves a martyr. It’s important that you don’t break the law, but rather greatly stretch your use of legal activities in hopes of antagonizing irritated law enforcement into an “unjust arrest.” The media will eat this up.
Ultimately, your plan should be so diabolical, so intricately concocted, that it probably appears to make absolutely NO sense to lowly plebs who can’t even begin to understand the complex engineering of your ingenious protest.
Just because when Googling “protests are”, auto-complete returns: pointless, useless, waste of time, and low level terrorism… doesn’t mean Barney Frank was right. You can put pressure on more than just the grass.