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Civil Disobedience: Shaken, Not Stirred

Brown hopes D.C. residents will be sipping on some civil disobedience next Thursday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Brown hopes D.C. residents will be sipping on some civil disobedience next Thursday. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Civil disobedience can take many forms: a protest, a boycott, a strike, a sit-in. And soon you will be able to sip your civil disobedience on the rocks.  

Shadow Sen. Michael D. Brown, one of the District of Columbia’s elected representatives who advocates for D.C. statehood, has concocted a cocktail called “Civil Disobedience,” or “the drink that will set you free,” to raise awareness about the statehood movement. On April 16, the Civil Disobedience will be offered at several D.C. watering holes including Busboys & Poets, Capitol Lounge, Comet Ping Pong, DC9, H Street Country Club, the Argonaut and Vendetta. The drink blends vodka, lime, blackberry brandy, soda and a “splash of righteous indignation.”  

The drink will be part of D.C. Emancipation Day celebrations, commemorating the 1862 act that ended slavery in the District. D.C. Emancipation Day is also a time for activists to raise awareness about D.C.’s lack of voting rights and to call for statehood.  

“The idea behind the drink is to help promote this special local holiday, raise awareness about our continuing battle for statehood and generate funds to help support our cause,” Brown said in a release announcing the drink. Part of the proceeds from each Civil Disobedience sale will benefit the “Statehood — No Other Way Foundation” also known as “Statehood NOW.”  

According to his spokesperson, Brown founded the nonprofit “Statehood NOW” about a month ago after a disagreement with Mayor Muriel Bowser and D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson over funds for the statehood movement. Brown decided to start the foundation to help fund statehood advocacy efforts, including media campaigns and educational outreach.  

One dollar from each drink purchase will benefit the fund, and the drink price will be determined by each bar, but will likely be comparable to other martini prices. The drink will also come with a statehood button and a coaster explaining why D.C. should become the 51st state.  

“All great revolutions started in a tavern somewhere — and we will be giving out this material in our renewed effort to spark a revolution here in the District,” Brown said. “We hope this will become an annual event and that the drink will become popular throughout the city reminding residents and visitors alike about our disenfranchised status.”  

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