Quiet protest

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The Rainforest Action Network team of runners participated in Sunday’s race without incident after having been ordered by Marathon managing director Steven Karpas to vacate its booth and leave the marathon’s expo at the George R. Brown Convention Center Friday for protesting against race sponsor Chevron’s human rights record in Ecuador.

The group’s members unfurled banners en route and at the finish that read "Change Chevron" while offering other runners "I’m Running for Human Rights" stickers.

Said race director Brant Kotch: "We sold them a license to run their race. They had a right to run in the race, and that’s what they did." But he added: "Chevron does wonderful things for this city and our event. I don’t think they should be called to task in this setting."

The group came from Northern California to protest what it claims has been Chevron’s failure to clean up toxic sludge deposited in Ecuador’s rain forest over 26 years of drilling there.

The Houston Chronicle
BERNARDO FALLAS, JEFFREY MARTIN and DALE ROBERTSON
Sunday, January 17, 2010

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