Hoosiers fired up over government shutdown
The group of protesters outside the federal building was pretty small, but pretty loud and really irritated with Congress.
Taking a break from the shouting and chanting, Reverend Michael Wolley explained, "I don't get paid if I don't work. And Congress? They are getting paid."
About eight protesters held signs. A few motorists honked their horns in support, while Wolley worked up a sweat working the bullhorn.
"The shutdown should not be. Because we have people out of work, people losing services," he said.
A quarter-million Hoosiers are already out of work. They will be joined by more than a thousand furloughed federal workers. Wednesday, the state announced the government employees are eligible to apply for unemployment benefits, providing them some relief.
Papa Roux is a far east Indianapolis restaurant that counts a lot of federal employees among its regular customers.
"People who make the decision to withhold their pay are getting paid. It is the people who had no choice in the matter," explained owner Art Bouvier. "All of a sudden, they are stuck with no paycheck. I think people are fed up."
Bouvier certainly is.
A small businessman with taxes and workers to pay resolved to do something bigger. Federal workers without a paycheck shouldn't have to go without lunch. So he said let's make a deal. The victims of congressional inaction pay what they can now and the rest later.
Surprisingly, "I've not actually had to make good on a single offer, because the handful that have come through and tried, people in line pay for it. It's pretty amazing," Bouvier said with a smile.
Acts of kindness and a complimentary meal served up at an uncomplimentary time.