Broward News

Earth First! Activists With Puppets and Costumes Marching on Kolter Group to Protect Briger Forest

Spring this year begins with a multifront burst of activity by local lefties -- on the environment, on GE foods labeling, and against the moral corruption of academia by the GEO Group private prison corporation.

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The environment is the focus of a West Palm Beach protest tomorrow, the second day of spring, courtesy of activists from the Palm Beach County Environmental Coalition and Everglades Earth First! They're concerned for the fate of Briger Forest, at 700 acres the largest bloc of undeveloped land in north-central Palm Beach County and one of the region's last remaining stands of coastal pine flatwoods.

Briger has been in the sights of developers and the county's business establishment ever since Jeb Bush birthed the idea of bioscience as the Holy Grail of local economic growth. Jeb's brainstorm fizzled out. There's still money to be made on the hustle, though, and now the Kolter Group is looking to cash in, with a scheme including housing, office space, and... more bioscience!

Advocating, among other things, a full environmental impact review of the proposed development, the protestors will assemble at 3 p.m. tomorrow at the Hibiscus Parking Garage by CityPlace. Garbed for street theater -- face paint, costumes, puppets -- they plan to march on Kolter's WPB offices and "throw down for Briger." [Info here and at (520) 250-0153.]

In other activism news... 

Regarding genetically engineered foods, a "virtual lobby" campaign in support of legislation mandating its labeling runs through March 23. The legislation has been introduced in the Florida Senate by Maria Sachs (D-Delray Beach). A companion bill in the House is co-sponsored by Mark Pafford (D-WPB).

Organized by groups including Food and Water Watch, the campaign is targeting local state representatives like Kevin Rader (D-Boca Raton) and Patrick Rooney (R-Palm Beach Gardens), who sit on the Florida House Agriculture and Natural Resources Subcommittee. [Info here and here.]  

Resistance to FAU's sale of naming rights to the school's football stadium to global private gulag operator GEO Group centers this week on the school's faculty senate, which meets Friday at 2 p.m. on the school's Boca Raton campus to consider a resolution expressing opposition to the deal. Here's how it reads: 

Whereas, faculty are concerned about the GEO Group's management of its institutions in the U.S. and abroad; and

Whereas, faculty oppose important administrative decisions being made without participation or input from faculty, staff, or other FAU stakeholders; and

Whereas, the GEO Group's business practices do not align with the missions of the university; and

Whereas, faculty think that the stadium naming has hurt the reputation of the university;

Be it resolved, that the faculty oppose naming the FAU football stadium the GEO Group Stadium.

Tepid as it is -- and notable for its absence of any proposed response should the school stand by its complicity with the notorious human rights abuser -- the resolution represents one small step for academic integrity. 

Failure to pass the measure would expose the faculty as mere careerists and moral cretins. The French call it la trahison des clercs. Faculty, one hopes, know what it means. You can look it up

Fire Ant -- an invasive species, tinged bright red, with an annoying, sometimes-fatal bite -- covers Palm Beach County. Got feedback or a tip? Contact [email protected]

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