A Florida mailman intent on making a grand statement about corruption in politics landed a gyrocopter on the U.S. capitol lawn on Wednesday.
Doug Hughes landed the small plane on the west lawn of the Capitol causing a shut-down of the area. The 61-year-old mailman made the public aware of his plan through his livestreaming website that explained his motivation for the protest — broken campaign finance laws are allowing the rich to corrupt the U.S. government.
Hughes carried with him letters to all 535 members of Congress detailing his reasoning for protesting the broken system.
Both the Tampa Bay Times, the newspaper that interviewed Hughes ahead of takeoff, and his friend Mike Shanahan warned the Secret Service of Hughes’ pending mission.
Hughes had even sent an email to firstname.lastname@example.org warning the administration about his plans.
Yet despite alerts through media, Hughes’ friend and Hughes himself, the Secret Service did not take action to thwart Hughes’ protest.
Hughes was detained immediately after landing.
Hughes’ dramatic stunt may not have been the most effective way to get money out of politics, but his message is clear: the 1 percent has too much influence on government power.
As 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, noted just a day before, “We need to fix our dysfunctional political system and get unaccountable money out of it once and for all — even if it takes a constitutional amendment.”