The once mighty community activist group ACORN announced Monday it is folding amid falling revenues — six months after video footage emerged showing some of its workers giving tax tips to conservative activists posing as a pimp and prostitute.And at Big Government, the site that first aired O'Keefe's "journalism," Kyle Olson suggests that ACORN timed its announcement that it's closing its doors to coincide with the passage of healthcare (for what is unclear? to pacify the right wing-nuts so they don't take up arms... yet?). ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis acknowledged that the closing was the result of
a series of well-orchestrated, relentless, well-funded, right-wing attacks that are unprecedented since the McCarthy era. Our effective work empowering African-American and low-income voters made us a target. The videos were a manufactured, sensational story that led to rush to judgment and an unconstitutional act by Congress.But it wasn't just the right that brought down ACORN. It was mainstream media that circulated O'Keefe's work as if it were journalism when they would never circulate Sacha Baron Cohen's work as if it were journalism. And it was Congress's willingness to defund ACORN, despite evidence and constitutionality, that destroyed the group. Ultimately, the people in charge in Washington and in the press are uncomfortable with the promise of radical democracy that ACORN represents. When ACORN registered historic numbers of African American voters and helped elect Barack Obama, they put what is primarily a white media and a white Congress on guard. Radical democracy involves all Americans voting and all Americans engaged in the political process. That is not something that a lot of powerful people feel completely comfortable with. The attacks on ACORN are evidence of this. Whatever corruption existed in the organization it was nothing compared to military contractors and the banks. And ACORN wasn't making bombs like General Dynamics or a bundle like Citibank. They were trying to help poor and underrepresented Americans get involved and shape their world and our country. They were trying to inculcate democracy. In other words, ACORN is closing because it was so successful in getting Obama elected. ACORN is closing because real democracy is not something that people in power in the America actually support. I can only hope that from the fall of ACORN, a stronger movement for radical democracy will spring up.