(New York City) Humans Everywhere Against Violence Eternally (HEAVE) unexpectedly struck at the New York Fox News headquarters and CNN on Tuesday, April 1, 2003. A group of 12 snacked on homemade blueberry, cherry and apple pies before they emptied their stomachs on the sidewalk of Rupert Murdoch's Fox News Corp at 48th and 6th ave. and CNN at 49th. Tuesday's campaign was entitled "Operation G.I. Tract Freedom". Organizers claimed their action was a gut-response to the current war reporting in mainstream media in general and Fox's heavily pro-war bias specifically.
"We called this event 'Operation G.I. (Tract) Freedom' because we find that John Ashcroft and the Patriot Act make us ill and limit our freedom of expression," said organizer G.I Tract Jane. "We find the mainstream media's reporters are in-bed-ed with the military. We find the mainstream media's editors are in-bed-ed with their advertisers. We find NBC to be in-bed-ed with General Electric, one of the few producers of nuclear weapons in the country. These points make our G.I tracts want to spontaneously liberate themselves all over mainstream media everywhere." Co-organizer G.I Tract Joe agreed, "We feel we deserve the right to express our gastro intestinal intuition in any way we please, and that this is a right we'd like the Iraqi people to share if the Bush Administration doesn't manage to kill them first. We find many people feel similarly with our views when they experience our position first hand and see it in action."
A Fox employee who asked not to be named was similarly inspired, "I didn't realize I was even part of OGI(T)F until I sat down to lunch with a copy of today's New York Post while watching Fox. I blew chow all over my desk." HEAVE warns against what it terms "The O'Reilly Factor"-- consuming two media sources owned by Rupert Murdoch at once, leading to cataclysmic results.
Organizers for HEAVE claimed Fox is the worst of the media pack with respect to pro-war bias, but didn't rule out hitting other mainstream media targets with their message. They pointed to an event last week in which Fox used its branded sidewalk ticker to provoke anti-war protesters with derogatory messages. An article in the March 28th issue of the Bergen Record bolstered their stance, "Media experts said what Fox did Thursday morning was not shocking - Fox was openly hawkish about the war long before it began. But, they said, the display - tagged with the Fox News logo -- threw journalistic objectivity out the window and also ridiculed the First Amendment right to freedom of speech." G.I Tract Jane cites a recent interview with Murdoch from the same article in which Rupert Murdoch makes his position on the potential for loss of life in the war clear, "The greatest thing to come out of [the war]... would be $20 a barrel for oil. That's bigger than any tax cut in any country."
One HEAVE participant was more circumspect, saying, "Look, I find the war itself flies in the face of popular opinion at home and abroad, and endangers not only our troops and innocent Iraqis but increases the chances of terror at home. Watching the coverage on TV seems to ignore all this and makes it look like the war is a harmless videogame. Scores of innocent civilians have died already, this isn't a game."
Members of HEAVE want to see more independent coverage of the war, the effects of the war, the peace movement as well as less pro-war bias, sensationalism and spectacle all around. As long as their requests go unanswered they expect to voice their opinions in more guttural ways.
HEAVE can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org