About a dozen protestors affiliated with MoveOn Gwinnett picket a commercial corridor on Ga. Highway 124 in Snellville on Saturday, voicing support for Occupy efforts in New York and Atlanta.
SNELLVILLE -- Chants of "Hey hey, ho ho, corporate greed has got to go!" and similar anti-Wall Street barbs rang out Saturday morning across Scenic Highway, aimed at a Wells Fargo Bank branch and, behind that, a busy Walmart.
Sans tents, sleeping bags and clashes with police, about a dozen people associated with MoveOn Gwinnett, a nonpartisan activist organization, brought hand-scribbled signs and audible support for Occupy protestors to the suburbs, garnering honks and rah-rah enthusiasm from passersby. Most were retirees and veteran activists, abiding by the motto: "We were active in the '60s and in our 60s."
The rally marched from the bank to the Walmart on a sidewalk. No one planned to camp, or even camp out for more than an hour or so. Big picture, the goal was to encourage Gwinnettians to patronize local businesses, credits unions and local banks, said organizer Steve Toggerson, of the MoveOn group.
"This is not a simple problem, nor are there simple solutions," Toggerson said. "The phone calls, the emails are not enough anymore ... we're calling on our legislators to not be obstructionists and pass legislation to help workers."
Toggerson's husband, retired teacher Pete Toggerson, said he was inspired to rally "when I found out Bank of America didn't pay any taxes," he said.
Particularly vocal protestor Glenda Poindexter, progenitor of the "They got bailed out -- they sold us out!" chant, is employed by a "large corporation" and serves as vice president of the local arm of America's largest communications and media union, she said.
"We're out here to support Occupy efforts ... to put the banks on notice that we don't have to take it," Poindexter said. "The people have the power, and they need to just try us."
Not everyone was enamored with the protestors.
A hefty guy in a Chevy Silverado let down his window, laughed and taunted, "Look at you!"
Earlier in the morning, at a town hall meeting a few miles away in Lilburn, U.S. Congressman Rob Woodall praised the movement as an indicator of citizens' audacity and passion.
"Involvement is not the enemy of America," said Woodall, a Gwinnett resident. "Apathy is."