Senator Sanders Shows Respect And Grace As Rogue Activists Crash Seattle Speech (VIDEO)

On Saturday, Senator Bernie Sanders went to speak before an audience in downtown Seattle alongside Socialist councilwoman Kshama Sawant. The event, set to celebrate the 80 years of Social Security success, did not go as planned however when several people charged the stage to take it over. They told the Senator to allow them to speak, or else they would shut down the entire event. Sanders politely ceded the stage to the two girls. Stating to be with a Black Rights Matter chapter, they took over the stage for several minutes, while Senator Sanders stood politely off to the side.

When presented with the epitome of rudeness by the young women, Sanders handles it like the bigger man and just steps aside. For his critics who claim that Sanders is not in touch with the plight of minorities in this country, he has demonstrated right here that he does indeed hear them. He gave two uninvited guests a forum, one they had no right to nor business at and let Black Lives Matter on that stage Saturday afternoon. But while he responded with tact and grace, many of those in the audience failed to live up to the standards he set.

One of the central arguments for the Sanders campaign is that if the left-wing supports candidates such as Sanders in our elections, it will pressure the mainstream parties to the left. With Sanders standing aside to give several minutes to these two women, identified as Marissa Johnson and Mara Jacqueline, the opportunity to address the crowd, the audience grew sour on them. The audience gathered began to shout them down, and media reports have thus far failed to note the message they felt was so important.

They then managed to do little other than look like fools. Seattle is one of the more unusual cases of a city built not on stolen land, but on land the natives viewed as worthless and were eager to sell to the American settlers. Indeed, the people of Chief Seattle, the Suquamish, continue to live their lives on the same territory they did in the 1800’s. They used rhetoric and symbolism which were found among Black Power movements of the 1960s, failing to realize that those movements were Communist. To witness a highly religious woman on stage giving the Marxist Solidarity fist was an irony lost on the pair. That they were criticizing one of the frontrunners on civil rights advocacy for not doing enough makes us all wonder where they get their information. They demanded the audience hold him accountable for civil rights, when his record is one of the best in the Senate, although not perfect by any means.

It turns out that Marissa was a Sarah Palin fan and had expressed a desire for working for the GOP in the past.

Now if she were still a Palin fan, her lack of knowledge and misuse of symbolism would make more sense. If her sources for Black History were Roger Ailes, one could forgive the lack of perspective, but she is a liberal now and we are supposed to know better.

Others at the rally were very aware of Sanders’ shortcomings, such as this sign holder pointing out Bernie’s less than stellar record on the Palestinian question.

Bernie Sanders Seattle Rally (1 of 49)

These two girls’ hearts are in the right place and their seizing of the initiative this weekend was a masterstroke. That the audience was so poorly behaved, while Sanders polite, only underscores the fundamental problems going on in this country. Indeed, Black Lives Matter and Sanders is right there with them. This is now the second interruption to one of Sanders events and with the adjustments to his rhetoric, the clear division between racial and economic justice in his words has been established.

For the two young activists, we can give them a bravo for bravery and a wag of the winger at the audience which failed to appreciate the boldness of their actions. Their words are not lost, even as they become a right-wing punchline. However the absurdity at the claims only served to render their points moot.

And the true hero of the hour was Senator Sanders himself, who showed nothing but dignity and statesmanship even as these two destroyed their own arguments before a live audience.

Featured image via Tiffany Von Arnim