by A.man.I & Mario Page
On Saturday, Mario “SupeShooter” Page called, “You wanna ride with me downtown? There’s a protest at the World of Coke.” I was down. Dream for Darfur partnered with a local organization to organize the protest against Coke for being a major sponsor of the upcoming Olympics in Beijing, China.
What’s wrong with that you ask? It’s been reported that China and the Sudanese government have close business ties (you’ll have to do some homework if you don’t follow). By being an Olympic sponsor, Coke is by association supporting the Chinese government and participating in the genocide, or so the argument goes.
We parked, geared up, and the first thing we noticed was a plane flying above with a banner that said “GO OLYMPICS! CNN STOP BASHING CHINESE!!!. Mario shot some b-roll of the banner plane (because the SupeShooter will shoot about anything that moves), and we continued on.
There were about 30 people protesting outside of World of Coke. They said that Coke is a good company, but it could be doing more to pressure China to stop working the Sudanese government. A reporter with the AJC, and a local NBC cameraman were there too.
We shot some b-roll, a couple of interviews, and wrapped up. As we’re leaving downtown we happened to pass CNN and noticed red flags, and thousands of people outside. It looked like another protest. People were also driving by, waving flags out of cars, and honking their horns… all Chinese.
The signs made it pretty obvious why they were there. Jack Cafferty. Back on April 9, Cafferty made some comments that pissed them off. “They’re basically the same bunch of goons and thugs they have been for the last 50 years,” said Cafferty.
By the time we parked, the police were moving the crowds to Centennial Park. Mario started shooting, and then I started interviewing. According to one of the organizers Lucy Lu, they used the Internet to get the word out. One guy even came out of his pocket to pay for the banner plane that was flying above.
I’d say there were more than a thousand people there. The folks we spoke to said at least two thousand turned out, but this is what CNN reported about the event.
A much smaller gathering of about two dozen people protested Saturday outside CNN’s corporate offices in Atlanta, Georgia.
I promise you, there were more than two dozen people. OK maybe there were a dozen left after police ushered everyone else away.
It looks like the local NBC station and we were the only broadcast crews that captured the protest. We called other media, but no one else wanted the footage. At least the AJC was on the ball, and if nothing else, I have MyUrbanReport.