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Saturday, September 1, 2012

'Taste' of Drones as Activists Stage Massive Die-In at Taste of Madison

Model Drone used in Die-in Protest at the Capitol in Madison, Wisconsin
Photo Credit: Wendi Kent
The annual "Taste of Madison" got a taste of what drones do today as about 20 activists staged a mass 'die-in' protest with a model drone in downtown Madison, Wisconsin. 

The activists along with members of Veterans for Peace held a direct action protest to bring awareness of the drone activity and the death and destruction it leaves behind. Using a 1/5 scale model drone, the activists gathered on State Street in downtown Madison with protest signs and messages about drones. At 11am a siren sounded and the activists fell to the ground and laid there, simulating a drone attack and the people who are killed by drones. 
Veterans for Peace member Larry Orr stated "Using a drone creates the need for more drones, whcih is good news for the big military industrial complex....job security for the big investors...wow." He went on to discuss how drones can also be used for things other than killing including search and rescue. "There are good uses for them, but unfortunately we use them for war."  
Reactions from the large crowd were shock, surprise, even a bit of confusion as many people wondered what was going on. A few members in the crowd were heard debating  if this event and the activists were part of "street theater"-- then after seeing the model drone and protest signs they figured it was 'some [protest] action' The actual die-in only lasted a few minutes but drew enough attention that people left talking about it. 

Video of the Drone Die-In Action courtesy of Chaous64 of Occupy Wisconsin can be found here, here, and here  
Crowd members react to the die-in protest
Photo Credit: Wendi Kent
Activists stage a die-in to bring awareness and protest the use of drone killing
Photo Credit: Nicole Desautels Schulte


Veteran for Peace Member simulates being dead during the drone die-in protest at the Wisconsin State Capitol
Photo Credit: Wendi Kent
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