Last week, before Tampa, Fla., hosted Mitt Romney’s official acceptance speech as the Republican nominee for president, New York workers stood outside of one of his old businesses and protested.
Members of the New York Community for Change, along with other organizers and workers who had recently arrived from protesting at the Republican National Convention, demonstrated outside of Bain Capital’s New York headquarters on the East Side of Manhattan, lamenting a world in which Romney could be elected president.
In addition, fake security officers protected a person dressed up as the Bane character from “The Dark Knight Rises,” also representing Bain Capital and wearing a belt buckle that said “Job Destroyer.” Speaking into a microphone and imitating Bane’s voice, Don Golan of Occupy Wall Street attempted to bring humor, pop culture and politics together before a growing crowd of passersby and protesters.
“Behind you stands a symbol of virtue, Bain Capital,” said Golan. “I’m excited that all of you can join me today on this holy site on the day that we anoint the future president of the United States and my partner in crime, Mitt Romney.
“I say with humility that it is in fact Romney who deserves the name ‘Bane,’” continued Golan. “For it is he [and] not I who will be the bane of your existence.”
Golan later spoke to the AmNews about his reasons for injecting humor into a topic that many don’t find humorous. “Just because the realities of living here are heartbreaking, it doesn’t mean it needs to break our sense of fun and willingness to resist sadness and cruelty,” he said. But why use the character of Bane?
“Bane/Bain speaks for himself,” said Golan. “If we’re going to have a shadow economy where $ 20 trillion are sitting in offshore accounts and we’re gonna have a shadow government where all of these corporate interests are running our political process from the shadows–just like the League of Shadows in ‘Batman’–we thought we’d actually bring these super villains out of the shadows and into the light so people can see what we’re fighting against.”
One protester, Maria D’Maisonet, spoke about her fear of a Romney White House.
“If Romney comes into the White House, there’s gonna be so much more poverty in America,” said D’Maisonet. “We already need to increase wages. Rent is up; people can barely afford to pay their rent and eat. If Romney comes in, there’s gonna be more homeless people and less jobs.”