STATE HOUSE: Progressive groups plan 'Truthful Tuesday' protest at SC State House

Posted by ADAM BEAM on January 6, 2014 

RNS-MORAL-MONDAY b

Two clergy members march against cuts to education during the seventh Moral Monday protest June 17 in Raleigh, NC. A coalition of progressive groups is planning a similar protest in South Carolina on Tuesday.

PHOTO BY ANNA SCOTT/WILMINGTONFAVS.COM

— You've heard of North Carolina's "Moral Mondays"? Get ready for "Truthful Tuesdays" in South Carolina.

A coalition of five progressive groups are organizing a rally at the State House at noon on Tuesday -- the first day of the 2014 legislative session -- to protest the S.C. legislature's "failure to enact Medicaid expansion," "failure to provide high quality education to all of our children," and "failure to protect voting rights."

"Whatever North Carolina has done in terms of advocating for moral and ethical laws, our state needs to do the same thing," said The Rev. Brenda Kneece, executive minister of the South Carolina Christian Action Council, a group that represents 16 denominations and 4,000 congregations. "This rally on Tuesday ... is the opening day of the (legislative session), and we want on that day to speak truth to power."

Kneece said the "Truthful Tuesday Coalition" consists of the South Carolina Christian Action Council, the South Carolina chapter of the National Association of Social Workers, the South Carolina Education Association, the South Carolina chapter of the NAACP and the South Carolina Progressive Network.

In an email to supporters, Kneece urged protesters to "wear black as a sign of mourning for the hundreds of lives which will be lost as a result of our state's failure to Expand Medicaid this year." She also encouraged clergy to wear their clerical garments.

North Carolina's "Moral Monday" started after Republicans won control of that state's governor's mansion and both houses of the state legislature for the first time since the Civil War. Police have arrested more than 920 people since the protests started in April, according to The News and Observer in Raleigh.

But Kneece urged protesters to "be respectful and be courteous."

Asked if she wants the rally to turn into a weekly protest, Kneece said "you are asking questions I cannot answer."

"We don't know what will happen after Tuesday," she said.

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