Last week, Occupy Boston held another Going out of Business Bake Sale for Bank of America. It was a small action, but done with theatrics and a sense of humor. Aproned street vendors handed out cookies and brownies; folks in suits passed out fliers; and a few demonstrators held banners and bantered back and fourth, taunting Bank of America.
I’ve always enjoyed taking part in demonstrations like this, partly for of the theatrics, and partly for the range of responses you get from people passing by. On one hand, I could see that the demonstration really resonated with some people. We got smiles, nods, friendly waves, and the occasional “yeah!” shout out. There’s a lesson in that — even if they’re not taking to the streets, there are plenty of people who aren’t happy with Bank America, and the way that banks have trashed our country’s economy.
And then there were reactions from the other side of the fence. One fellow dressed in a suit and tie took a flier, took a brownie, and paused for a moment to read the flier. He stood still for a few seconds, grimaced, wrapped the flier around the brownie, and flung it on the ground. We clearly touched some sort of nerve there. I could picture him as someone in Bank of America’s marketing department, trying to sell their crooked business practices to anyone foolhardy enough to listen.
Finally, there were the mixed reactions to the banter. “Be a patriot and help bail out the United Bank of America” raised eyebrows, while “Bank of America bought Countrywide, and now they need all the help they can get” seemed to make people a tad anxious. “Banks got bailed out, they need more dough” drew chuckles.
All in all, it was a good afternoon. Stay tuned — we’re planning more bank actions this summer.