On June 27, the day following our Meet ‘n’ Greet at Maynard Station, a couple of dozen Comstock Residents Association supporters joined other member groups of PLAN, the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada, in a picket and protest outside the Nevada Museum of Art in Reno, where Comstock Mining Inc. was conducting its annual shareholders meeting.
The event began with the assembled 50 or so picketers greeting arrivals at the meeting with signs, placards and shout-outs. Picketers included visitors from Guatemala, where Daniel Kappes, a CMI Director, heads a mining project that is disrupting and destroying the adjacent communities just as CMI is doing here, but with the added element of violence.
Our marching and milling around was confined to the sidewalk out of deference to the Museum, and on account of our commitment to non-confrontation. We were there to deliver a message, not start a fight.
Later in the morning we launched our Cantastoria, a tale illustrated by painted panels and told by a variety of “actors”, in this case depicting the turmoil caused by intrusive and unethical mining.
At least one Lyon County official scurried past us and into the Museum, and we’re told there were a few other familiar faces among the CMI investors at the meeting. Our antics clearly rattled Corrado De Gasperis, the CMI CEO, who referred to the protests several times in his remarks over the course of the meeting.
All in all it was an exotic event for most of us — a street protest! — an enjoyable semi-social occasion in sunshine and a nice breeze, and an unmistakable police presence to add a sense of security. And all for a good cause. I’m surprised more people aren’t doing this, at least on nice days.