INPIRG mock wedding protests Citizens United

After months of planning and preparation for the big day, McDonald’s and Monsanto were married yesterday during a small ceremony in the Indiana Memorial Union. 

They came out of the IMU not as man and wife, but as one merged company. 

INPIRG, a student activist organization on campus, organized the mock corporate wedding Wednesday to educate students about the power corporations have in politics.  

“We think that’s fundamentally wrong and we’re educating students and working long-term to pass resolutions through the IUSA to support the overturning of Citizens United,” said Matthew Gough, campus coordinator for INPIRG. 

The group married the world’s largest fast food chain and Monsanto, an agricultural biotechnology company. 

“We’re having a corporate wedding to show people how silly it is to treat corporations like people,” Joshua Coker, junior and member of INPIRG, said.

Senior Helena Correa played the part of McDonald’s, while Coker represented Monsanto. 

Correa said McDonald’s sells genetically modified foods, but also frequently lobbies in the government.

McDonald’s spent more than $1 million on campaigning during the 2012 elections, Correa said.

Gough said the wedding shows the absurdity of the Citizens United decision.
Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission is a Supreme Court case from 2010 that prohibits the government from restricting corporate spending in political campaigns.

The decision granted many of the same rights to corporations as people were entitled to, declaring corporate personhood. 

“Corporate personhood is a doctrine that’s developed in our laws where corporations are allowed the rights that are afforded to people under the constitution, and we’re protesting it because corporations aren’t people,” Coker said. “It’s a big part of the corruption of our democratic system.” 

Bruce Neswick, an associate professor of organ in the Jacobs School of Music, stopped on his way through the IMU to take a photo with McDonald’s and Monsanto and sign their petition.

“I’m just thrilled to see you guys involved and concerned, and I’m concerned too,” Neswick said. “I think part of the environmental demise of our planet is because of this food production.”