VIDEO: Protesters Have Messages for U.S., South Korean Presidents
More than 50 protesters gathered across the street from the General Motors Orion Assembly plant Friday as President Obama and South Korean President Lee addressed a crowd of workers inside.
About 50 people intent on delivering a message to either President Barack Obama or South Korean President Lee Myung-bak lined up across the street Friday from the GM Orion Assembly plant with signs in hands.
The protesters' messages took a few distinctly different tacks.
Tim Drutis of Clarkston waved a sign over his head that read, “Goodbye US Auto Cars.”
Drutis said the passage of the U.S.-South Korea Trade Agreement, which backers say will create 70,000 American jobs and encourage international business partnerships, is a an uneven trade.
“The Korean economy is a tenth of the U.S," Drutis said. "It’s just not a good deal to trade straight with someone who has a tenth to offer what you do. It’s a terrible deal. You have to negotiate better."
While Bobby Jackson held a simple sign that said “Obama” in red, white and blue. Jackson said he was just there to support Obama and do his best to ensure he’s voted to another term.
A group of about 20 Chinese Americans held up large signs that depicted atrocities to Chinese Falun Gong practitioners in order to get Myung-bak's attention.
Tommy XU, president of Michigan’s Folun Dafa Association, said that since 2009, South Korea deported 10 Falun Gong practitioners back to China, where they face torture and persecution.
Falun Gong is a Chinese-based spiritual practice of meditation and slow-moving exercises.
Xu said the group is calling upon South Korea to grant Chinese Falun Gong practitioners full asylum.