Michael Moore story – final edit

This version of my story on Michael Moore’s speech back in October was the final version I submitted to be graded in last semester’s Reporting class with Professor Jane Hall. Based on her suggestions to improve it, I believe this version is much more direct and interesting.

 

In this case, second time was the charm.

 

 

“Michael Moore discusses activism, new autobiography at Sixth & I Synagogue”

 

WASHINGTON- Michael Moore called his supporters to political activism and promoted his new autobiography  “Here Comes Trouble: Stories from my Life” at Sixth & I Street Historic Synagogue on Oct. 2.

Moore recalled growing up in the 1950s and 1960s and how, since then, the middle class has weakened as a result of the rich’s greed and the demonization of liberals.

“The rich have overplayed their hand,” he said. “‘Enough’ is the dirtiest word in their vocabulary.”

In his autobiography, Moore recalled his childhood where one wage supported a household; his father received four weeks of paid vacation as a factory worker and his family was fully insured.

“The rich didn’t used to matter,” he said. “There was an unwritten deal between the classes where, if the working class works hard and the rich prosper, you prosper.”

Now, he says, times have changed.

Moore cited the handling of Occupy Wall Street protestors, whom he supports, as an indicator of a national change in mindset.

“More than a thousand [protestors] were arrested on Wall Street this weekend and none were bankers,” he said. “Instead of being hauled off like criminals, [bankers] are being rewarded. I’ve never seen anything more disgusting in my life.”

 

Moore also called for “the majority” of Americans, who want to “end wars now, implement strong environmental protection laws and ensure women are paid the same as men,” to own the word “liberal.”

“We live in a liberal nation,” he said. “Most Americans are liberals but don’t call themselves that…we ran away [from the word] and made other words so people wouldn’t hate us.”

Moore cited liberal candidates winning the popular vote in presidential elections as evidence, such as President Obama’s 2008 victory.

Despite his support for the political left, he criticized Obama for conceding to the opposing party too much.

“[Obama]’s doing this out of fear or a belief in what he’s doing, which is depressing,” he said. “What happened to him? I want him back.”

The event took a lighter turn as Moore read the audience a chapter from his book. “Bitburg” described the author’s trip to Bitburg, Germany in 1985 with a Jewish friend, whose parents were Holocaust survivors, to protest former President Reagan’s decision to lay a wreath at the graves of Nazi soldiers.

After working for hours to obtain press passes and get through security, he and his friend unfurled a banner reading “They killed my family” when Reagan’s motorcade passed by.

This is just one of many eye-opening accounts in Here Comes Trouble, a book of “non-fiction short stories” which chronicles Moore’s life from childhood to the production of his first documentary, “Roger & Me,” in 1989.

Moore then answered questions and told one audience member that he planned to join protestors at Freedom Plaza downtown this weekend.

“We have the people and the moral and spiritual value of who we are,” he said. “Don’t despair-get involved.”

“WVCS’s golden seniors celebrate 50 years”

Springville Journal article; Thursday, August 25th 2011

 

This was a story I covered at my Grandmother’s request when she hosted a reunion event for her high school class in August. It was published in the local Springville Journal, a paper I used to contribute articles to in high school.