Throughout the weekend,
the Green Circus was fed by Food Not Bombs, who had themselves received donations
from supermarkets, with food that would otherwise have been thrown out and wasted.
Housing was generously supplied by fellow Bio-Democracy advocates. Though they slept within a stone's throw of South Philly's giant power-plant, they were protected and nourished by a wild mulberry tree which grew out of the abandon house next door. The tree could be climbed if one wanted to explore the house, or one could pick sweet berries. It also provided excellent shade for morning meditation, yoga and chi-gung.
When they got in on Friday evening, the Green Circus rehearsed their new script and made several additions, like the song "We don't need your sterile seed" (A.K.A. "We don't need no GMO's no more!'") Later they danced, and networked with activists at a Code Pink party. James Green danced in the street until he was let in for free.
On Saturday, the Green Circus unveiled their latest skit about genetic modification, introducing the first appearance of Sterile Seed, Rainbow Genesis and The Propha-seed. Members of the community were invited to talk about sustainable agricultural solutions and lifestyle modifications that can help save the planet. This includes recycling water by bucket flushing your toilet with grey water from the sink, composting food scraps to make enriched soil, gardening at home and using bio-dynamic and organic farming methods. Bio-diesel and waste-oil, both made from vegetable oil, were discussed as alternatives to petroleum for running vehicles. The performance went on to include singing, dancing and a magical rainbow transformation. The day continued with music and performance from several artists in the community.
Sunday, members of the Green Circus split up to address community needs all over Philadelphia. Propha-seed lent a hand at a community garden. Rainbow Genesis assisted the Super-hero Women of Code Pink in their Activist Training Workshop. Meanwhile, Hempy the Clown went back to New York City, and James Green started a compost bin and took a nature walk with the kids in childcare. In the late afternoon they attended seminars on bio-technology. Then, that evening, attendants of the Bio-Democracy Conference dressed as mutants and played music outside the Bio-Tech Conference. Printed across the front of the building read "We the People..." to which protesters chanted, "No GMO for we the peo-ple!"
Monday, the Green Circus led a radical Super-hero Clowning and Street Theater Workshop which attracted prospective Green Circus members from Peru, North Carolina, Arizona, and Philadelphia. Circus Members improvised, played acting games, helped make signs, built puppets and brainstormed about performing at the following day's convergence. Later, there were more seminars on bio-technology, as well as the destruction of the Blue Mountains in Virginia due to strip mining operations; which level mountains looking for the dirtiest fossil fuel of them all — coal (see -> http://www.mountainjusticesummer.org/richmond/). This summer activists from around the world are joining with members of the community in Virginia to prevent coal sludge from burning a local elementary school, kids and all.
Tuesday morning, the Green Circus joined in a ritual that purified the blue water of the fountain in Love Park, making it run crystal-clear. They traveled to the front of the offices of GlaxoSmithKlein (a major pharmaceutical company), where they were served breakfast by Food Not Bombs and listened to live music and speeches from senior groups on the high prices of healthcare, prescription drugs and the risk to Social Security. The group then split into three. The reds mission was to call attention to the dangers of bio- weaponry. The Greens spoke out against genetically altered food, and the Blues discussed the problems with healthcare. The Greens started in front of the EPA, the Blues in front of GlaxoSmithKlien and the Reds started in Washington Park. They marched with puppets, signs and costumes as well as bull horns, drums and other instruments as they chanted their messages in rhythmic unison, convening again before the Bio-Tech conference center as delegates entered to discuss privately why the protesters did not agree with their policies.
Some of the Bio-Tech conferees watched from the window as the sun puppet defeated the War Monger puppet, the Corporate Healthcare and Agro-Business puppets had been taken by police earlier when a protester threw water on a cop. The officer beat the 16-year-old protester and pulled his hair until the officer was so worked-up he had a heart attack and died. Several protesters were arrested and though the police commissioner made a public statement that the officer's heart attack was not the protester's fault; there have been reports that two of the protesters will be charged with homicide.
The protesters paid their respects to the fallen officer with a moment of silence before returning to Love Park where they were joined by skateboarders. The park had been a skateboarding mecca for years, but it is now illegal to enter the park with a skateboard. That day, hundreds of skateboarders as young as 12 years old showed up to reclaim the park. Some as young as 13 were arrested and held in custody until parents could come from as far as New Hampshire to collect their children. Protesters and Philadelphians swam in newly cleaned water of the fountain, until cops surrounded them and forced them back onto the steps.
This did not stop the love as drummers played, skateboarders did tricks, people danced, sang and chanted. They did flips and played capoeira as police surrounded the park. Next the protesters met in a church basement to discuss the days activities and plans for that evening. They chose to return briefly to Love Park before marching to the Art Museum where the Bio-Tech delegates were ending their conference with a fancy dinner party on the main steps. James Green spoke to some of the Bio-Tech delegates in the gazebo behind the museum as the sun set. They were from India and wanted to know what was being protested. They mentioned that the days workshops had been centered around this question: What do the protesters have against bio-technology?
Nevertheless, they seemed somewhat surprised when James mentioned that he was protesting the patenting of genetically modified plants because wild plants that were cross pollenated by the GMO's would be the property of the corporation and would receive the terminator gene rendering it unable to reproduce. James Green noted that this could cause massive extinction of plants. The delegates agreed that this was a problem but said that they were cancer researchers and that that was not their field. A fellow activist mentioned that they were protesting the high prices of pharmaceuticals as well. The delegates agreed with this statement as well and blamed the companies they work under for this unfortunate situation.
James Green did not mention that the most effective cancer treatment in this hemisphere is given by Howard Hoxy in Mexico — an herbal tonic and skin wash made completely from plants native to North America. Nor did he mention that the FDA had kicked Hoxy out of the country when it was formed its center, in favor of the large pharmaceutical companies and their expensive drugs. Instead he smiled warmly, shook the delegates hands and wished them a wonderful evening.
Vigils were held that night and the next morning at the jail where protesters were held. Wednesday, James Green and friends spoke to a local gardener about the bio-diversity in his garden and his plans to install a solar powered waterfall in the middle of it. They sampled three kinds of thyme and two kinds of lettuce and James Green's new friends spoke to the gardener about apprenticing with him. James Green and his friends also spoke to a healthcare professional who said that much of the cancer in the third world could be prevented if everyone was vaccinated at birth for hepatitis B.
It was now Wednesday and the weekend had been incredible for the Green Circus. Now it was time to return to New York. Rainbow Genesis and James Green met at the Greyhound station and took a Peter Pan bus back to Port Authority, waving a temporary goodbye to the City of Brotherly Love.