Saturday, June 05, 2004
Today I went to the protest in DC that I mentioned before. It is incredible. I would say there were people, of a large cross-section of races, ethnicities, and nationalities, in the thousands. The march, from Layfette Square to War Secretary Donald Rumsfeld's official residence (which I am sure is unprecedented in its audacity), went on for at least an hour, about two miles. It was one of the greatest things I've ever been involved with. You really feel like you're a part of something much, much bigger than yourself, a part of history. Although there were a few there that gave us a bad name (such as one who equated Israelis and the Palestinians with the Nazis and the Jews, or the ones with the sign that read: "Support the Resistance: Free Saddam," which was really ridiculous), for the most part the messages that most people there had were ones that any sane American can agree with. As we marched through the ghettoes, in particular, it was really something to see people on the stoop of their homes, shouting with us and cheering us on. I sensed some trouble (fortunately none came to pass) when the police barricaded most of us from getting any closer to Rummy's multi-million dollar mansion and one of the people was like, "Seig hail!" I sighed, knowing that that was a particularly stupid (and, yeah, retarded) thing to do. Fortunately, after we began chanting and all, the Feds caved in and let us through. Shouting "The People United Will Never Be Defeated!" we marched on through to meet up with the small group of protestors at the front who had inexplicably gotten through. A list of people made speeches there, including Michael Berg, the father of Nick Berg (who was beheaded by Iraqi militants). Ironically, one of the pitifully small group of counter-protestors who were closer to Rummy's house (of course) held a poster that included a photo of Nick Berg before his decapitation, and at the same time that man's father was denouncing the administration for letting it happen. You could really smell it in the air: the thunder of democratic change. Sorry. Excuse the lameness of that, but that's how it was. I tell ya: come November 2nd, we are going to see the closest election this nation has ever had, and the result will seal our fate (for better or worse). An Associated Press wire from the Washington Post has the story, although the article cites the number of protestors as "several hundred." The number of protestors went on as long as the eye can see; it had to have been in the thousands. But what do I know? After all, I was only right there in the middle of it, so what do I know? And the breaking news at this moment is the death of Fmr. Pres. Ronald Reagan, which is currently dominating headlines and will (no doubt) be the leading headline in the 'liberal media' tomorrow. But not to worry, those not in the DC area will hear about the massive protest if they flip through tomorrow's Post for a few minutes. They'll find it ... somewhere. But anyhow, the Great June 5 DC Protest is an event I'll never forget. All I can do now is quote the great Bob Dylan, who once said that "the times they are a-changin'"; they are, indeed.