Anti-Fracking Group: Democrats’ Platform Is a Pile of Crap

Food & Water Watch tagged Philly’s DNC donkeys with a special message about fracking.

DNC Donkey, decorated by Food & Water Watch | Photo by Jared Brey

DNC Donkey, decorated by Food & Water Watch | Photo by Jared Brey

The environmental group Food & Water Watch isn’t fracking around.

On Tuesday, the group held a press conference at City Hall to say that its members had planted fake donkey turds and painted a special message at a few of the fiberglass donkeys planted around town by the Democratic Party ahead of the Democratic National Convention. Their grievance: The official party platform, which will be adopted at the convention in Philly later this month, doesn’t include a ban on fracking. 

“Time and again, the party establishment has mobilized to keep a ban on fracking out of the party platform,” said Sam Bernhardt, a senior organizer with Food & Water Watch, after the press conference. “More recently, this weekend in Orlando, the establishment actually mobilized to make sure there wasn’t even a vote on the ban-fracking amendment.”

Fracking is short for “hydraulic fracturing,” a drilling process that companies use to extract natural gas from underground. Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has sought to impose a tax on fracking in Pennsylvania, but Republicans, who control the legislature, have been almost uniformly opposed to it.

Bernhardt said the group had decorated around 20 of the donkeys downtown, using washable paint.

“We’re really grateful that the Democratic National Committee brought us these beautiful fiberglass scultptures. And we thought there was something missing from the artwork. So we designed these donkey craps, and a little message to accompany them, to make sure to send the message that the Democratic Party platform, without a ban on fracking, is just that. It’s donkey crap.”

Strong words. So why not use permanent paint?

Bernhardt said the group is helping to organize the March for a Clean Energy Revolution, from City Hall to Independence Mall, on the Sunday before the convention.

“We need our resources to not be in jail,” he said.

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders called for a ban on fracking during his campaign for president. Hillary Clinton, who is expected to accept the Democratic nomination, hasn’t gone that far.

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