Specifically it was Countryside, but that's not a designated city name or anything, so technically it's Clearwater.
If you know your way around Pinellas County, it's the intersection of 580 and McMullen Booth.
The event was planned for 4 PM. I showed by 3:30 just in case parking was an issue (at that time, it wasn't). No one was there yet so I walked the intersection pedestrian crosswalks awhile until more people showed.
The first photo was taken about 3:40 pm.
Schools and Teachers
Union workers in general
This group is standing on the NW corner of the intersection. Behind them is the Countryside High School.
The next set of photos are as the afternoon went on, between 3:45 to 4:45.
By the by, while the pro-union, pro-schools rally was going on, a counter-protest of Tea Partiers carrying Rick "I DIDN'T CARE HE COMMITTED MEDICARE FRAUD" Scott banners and the "Don't Tread On Me" flags were on the southeast corner of the intersection. The photos of their rally will be toward the end of this entry. I wanna document how the pro-sanity rally was doing first. :-)
The sign I borrowed from one of the rally organizers who brought extra. I only brought a camera.
The photo was taken by a lady who was also taking pictures of other pro-school attendees. I should have taken my hat off so you could see me squinting more clearly. Heh.
I'd have to say this was a good-sized turnout for the pro-school, pro-union crowd. Most of them showed up in red shirts (it was one of the local union chapters, but I forgot to ask which union). Nearly all of them showed with hand-made signs (and for those of us too lazy to make one, the rally organizers had extras printed out).
Now, you ask. What about that opposing group. What about the Tea Partier group that was on the opposite corner of the intersection with McMullan Booth and 580?
There's almost nobody here. I counted about 16 people. Even if I miscounted, there was no way there was more than 20 Tea Partiers here.
I called them the Tea Party crowd because three of them brought those yellow "Don't Tread" flags with them.
You can see it better here. There are clear gaps between clumps of 2-3 people spread out over less space. The far left of that photo was about the end flank of their line.
Like I said. There's almost nobody here. Compared to the other side of the street, that is. There had to be at least a 4-to-1 advantage to the pro-school, pro-union (and yes, anti-Scott) crowd.
Coming out to this event gave me hope. It gave me the awareness that in truth there are a TON of fellow Floridians who are in favor of doing right by our schools, who are in favor of doing something to fix our unemployment crisis. It gave me hope that there are more Floridians out there angry about how reckless and crooked someone like Rick "JOB KILLER" Scott really is. It makes me hope that others are going to realize that the Tea Partiers are truly FEW in number (and from what my fellow ralliers told me, the Tea Partiers didn't even understand the debate. They were only out here to rally for Scott and against unions. They were really only there because the Awake The State group was there).
It also gave me a backache. Ahhh, I seriously need a back massage.
Thank you to everyone who attended the rally. And let me know what those cops were doing on the Tea Party side of the street with their lights flashing (uh-oh!) when I left at 5:30 pm. What happened over there?