Rock the TPP: An Evening of Musical Resistance
On Wednesday July 25, 2012, over 80 activists, concerned global citizens, and friends gathered in the Asia-Pacific Networking Zone of the Global Village at the 19th International AIDS Conference in Washington D.C. They were united by a single cause: far-reaching consequences of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) for access to affordable medicines including life-saving anti-retroviral medicines (ARVs). The TPP, a Free Trade Agreement being negotiated between the U.S., Canada, Mexico, and eight nations around the Pacific Rim could potentially increase the prices of these drugs and decrease their availability - if it continues on its current trajectory. By gathering together, we will unite to stop the draconian intellectual property provisions of the TPP and keep access to affordable medicines and life-saving ARVs a possibility for millions.
The evening began with food, drinks and a performance by Peter Maybarduk, director of the Global Access to Medicines Program at Public Citizen. Other performers soon joined the line-up, including French activist Jerome Martin and Brazilian advocates Philippe & Pedro, ending in a rousing chorus of "We Will Rock You" by Queen by everybody there. The song sent a strong message to the United States Trade Representative and all those negotiating the TPP that we will not tolerate trade agreements that place economic profits before human lives and we will stand to oppose the TPP if it endangers access to medicines in the negotiating countries