Elizabeth Dias of Time is the latest to explore the Moral Monday protests by progressive religious leaders in North Carolina, which is vying with several other states in this budget season to see which one can make life hardest for the poor. She writes:
Almost every Monday since late April, hundreds of protestors have gathered at the North Carolina General Assembly in Raleigh to oppose the state’s budget cuts to unemployment benefits, healthcare funding, education, and other social benefits. Today, July 1, the “Moral Mondays” protest may break records: Thousands of people are expected, as it is the first Monday since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned parts of the Voting Rights Act and the day that some of the most severe state cuts go into effect.
Nearly 600 people have been arrested for civil disobedience in the Moral Mondays protests since they started on April 29. Last week’s protest alone drew 3,000 people, and 120 people were arrested. The protestors range from ministers to a 60-year-old seventh-grade teacher to college students to a Duke University historian. Baptist churches host worship and prayer services before the protests begin, and regional Christian radio stations are starting to cover the protests.
Moral Monday protestors are liberal in bent, unhappy with the conservative policies their Republican-controlled legislature has enacted so far this year.