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Photos: Woman Tries to Marry Corporation

A group against the idea of corporate personhood staged a skit to prove its point.

After being stood up at the altar, bride Robin Hansen realized why her groom—Bank of America—never showed up: he wasn’t a real person.

“You promised me a wonderful life,” cried the “bride,” Robin Hansen, to the  on Jefferson Avenue and Marshall Street. “You promised affordable housing, non-predatory lending and no unfair foreclosure practices.”

According to the January 2010 Supreme Court ruling, Citizens United vs. Federal Elections Commission, corporations also have the rights to make political expenditures under the First Amendment, which has elicited comparisons of corporations to people.

The organization MoveToAmend.org, which is dedicated to overriding the idea of corporate personhood, staged the skit Wednesday afternoon to show that corporations like Bank of America are not people.

Hansen and her wedding guests of about 30 people are just one branch of approximately 100 around the country that stage similar skits.

“Corporations are not people,” said Veronica Palmer, the Director of the San Mateo County Move To Amend branch. “Yet they can spend tons of money funding people’s campaigns.”

Bridesmaid Carol Cross said that these productions provide variation to the typical sign picketing protests that many people often tire of.

“It’s important to inject humor in these skits,” she said. “It gets our message across in a different way.”

However, proponents of Citizens United argue that the First Amendment protects corporations’ freedom of speech by allowing them to support political campaigns in any way they wish, including monetary donations.

Opponents believe that this allows corporations to spend excessive amounts of money funding political campaigns.  They said the only way to repeal the decision is to spread awareness and put pressure on local officials to make change.

Paul Stewart May 10, 2012 at 03:18 PM
This is hilarious and if the Occupiers didn't come off looking like buffoons with stunts like this (thouhg they obviously got the media to bite), people might actually listen to them.
Karen May 10, 2012 at 03:51 PM
God bless America--not Bank of America, but our country that allows wonderful, peaceful protests that make solid points. At least the Supreme Court's decision on Citizens United is something we citizens--Republicans, Democrats, Independents, et al.--are united against! May the 99% pervail!
Cilla Raughley May 10, 2012 at 04:22 PM
Speaking as a fan of political satire, I disagree. This was fabulous, complete with costumes and songs. And the people are DEFINITELY listening-- the politicians should take note of that. Congratulations to Move to Amend, MoveOn, and Occupy for standing up for We the People.
Angela Mogin May 10, 2012 at 05:37 PM
I guess buffoonary like beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Some might consider giving an eternal enitity the attributes of personhood and allowing that entity to influence the political process via secret donations as taking a logical idea to a ridiculous extreme. Calling attention to judicial illogic sometimes requires highlighting the particularly illogical aspects of the decision. What better way to do this than through humor?
Reality Check May 10, 2012 at 05:57 PM
With the caveat that I can only guess at Stewart's politics, why is it that the more pro-establishment, conservative/Republican-leaning folks among us tend to be the ones who never miss an opportunity to mock or otherwise criticize grass-roots political demonstrations, speech or -- in this case -- theater? Putting on my armchair psychologist hat, my hunch is that at some level they're at some level threatened or made so uneasy by it that they feel compelled to belittle it in order to soothe their rankled sense of how good, respectable sheeple are supposed to behave and think. At the extreme end of the spectrum, "coloring outside the lines" is so upsetting or troubling to some that they are sometimes even moved to verbally (or even physically -- as in gay bashing) beat up those who don't fit inside their worldview. So sad. And yet we still have high-profile mockers like Rush Limbaugh who are able to even make a very comfortable living doing it because, in large part, what he says speaks to and reassures such people.
Roger Brina May 10, 2012 at 09:32 PM
Uh, where did you see anywhere in this article Occupiers being mentioned? Occupy Redwood City, Occupy San Jose, and Occupy Mountain View were outside the San Mateo County courthouse disrupting foreclosure sales while this event was going on.
Veronica Palmer May 11, 2012 at 04:21 PM
When the Bride recognized that the bank couldn't or wouldn't fulfill its promises of a better life, we come to the truth of the matter; corporations aren't necessarily the solution. Yes, sometimes they are the problem. Over the last 126 years, corporations have gotten the same rights and protections in the Bill of Rights that the founding fathers gave us REAL people. They then use those rights and protections against us to strike down laws and regulations that We, the People enacted to protect our communities and families; Laws like the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, the Occupational and Safety Act, the Environmental Protection Agency and more. Corporate friendly justices on the Supreme Court of the United States over many years created this doctrine of Corporate Personhood. The Founding Fathers never intended for corporations to have the Bill of Rights. The Supreme Court is wrong and like many times past, We, the People have to correct their error. Corporations provide important services and products that allow us to do things that the government cannot do but, the Founding Fathers recognized that corporations had to be watched and regulated closely. Corporations have no soul, no morals, no public interest. Corporations can live forever, they can amass huge financial resources; they have dozens, hundreds, sometimes thousands of people working in their interest 24/7. We can abolish the doctrine of Corporate Personhood with a Constitutional Amendment.
Reality Check May 11, 2012 at 04:40 PM
As if on cue, and following up on my earlier comment about conservative/Republican-leaning folks being uncomfortable about those who "color outside the lines" ... the big news on Romney yesterday was the reports from schoolmates who saw him bully and bash gay ("effeminate" looking/acting) classmates. He is said to have grabbed and held down one such classmate, and forcibly cut his hair because it was too long and/or dyed the "wrong" color. This news the day after Obama (finally!) came out and said he thinks gays should be allowed to marry.
Thomas Atwood May 11, 2012 at 05:00 PM
In the wake of the Citizens United decision, almost $300 million was spent to influence the midterm elections in 2010, more than all the midterm elections combined since 1990. Corporate "free speech" rights are very bad news for democracy in the United States. We, the (natural) people, must reassert our right to regulate the influence of big money on the electoral process.
Occupy Redwood City May 13, 2012 at 06:53 AM
ORWC wants to say GREAT JOB to our friends at Move to Amend! And thank you for joining us after your event at the San Mateo County Courthouse where we were shutting down foreclosure sales with OSJ and OMV. Your support was much appreciated.

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