Sunday, August 29, 2004

The Protests in New York: America is Better Than This

While watching the protestors file past Madison Square Garden, I couldn’t help but think how plump and healthy they all were. In contrast to women that marched to Versailles, to the people who surrounded the Winter Palace, or even to the Bonus Marchers, many of these folks looked as though they took some vacation time for a road trip to New York City to celebrate their collective distaste for Dubya. The atmosphere was party-like. There was music and there was dancing and outlandish costumes and balloon heads of the Asses of Evil. You had people of all stripes and many cut a most singular figure. Today, 7th Ave was the place where non-conformists could go to conform with other non-conformists.
Estimates of the crowd ranged from 100K to 500K. I couldn’t attest to which figure was closer, but it was a sight larger than the protests in Boston, and yet, no cages of which I’m aware.
Some of the placards were well worn:
“Stop Bush Now”,
“End the Occupation of Iraq”,
“LIAR!” (under the face of Bush),
“Bush Lies/Who Dies?”,
and a personal favorite, “Fuck Bush!”
Well! I don’t…
And others were a little newer:
“It’s the Neo-Cons Stupid! Not the CIA”,
and “Got Democracy” with a hooded Abu Ghraib prisoner backed by the stars and stripes.
I was surprised that the chant of choice was “Fox News Sucks”, even more popular than “Bush and Cheney: Asses of Evil.” Several in the crowd were alternating chants of “fuck you!” and “bullshit!” Followed by a lady holding the placard “Stop World Hate”.
I saw part of a placard that said “This is what democracy looks like,” but the picture was obstructed by another sign.
Lots of anger out there, no doubt about it. One of the signs simply read: “America Is Better Than This.” Indeed.


Steve said...

So... plump and helathy? And this should affect a person politcal leanings how?
And I would agree, America is better than this... we deserve better than a group of darft-dodging (oh, excuse me, "deferring"), spoiled rich boys running the country, playing with our freedom and our lives as if we were nothing more than markers on a monopoly set.

Perhaps the anger comes from the sheer disdain and lack of respect this administration has paid to the public.
Some of the greats:
"They hate our freedom."
"There is a connection between Iraq and Al-Qaeda"
"I think it's all right for there to be a dictator as long as it's me"

And besides - to cynically exploit the site of a national tragedy by trying to play off a craeer as a "successful wartime president" (gosh, I thought successful meant that the operations were over and the mission was accomplished.) Is despicable... but par for the course with these boys.

Jeffrey Hill said...

Plump and healthy: when my girth abounding cat goes outside & harangues a neighbor for food, that neighbor will no doubt take one look at the volume of my cat and say, “I don’t feel sorry for you because you’re not missing any meal.” Translation, one look at the protestors and you can see that they ain’t suffering. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s great for Bush to have a large protest outside of the convention – it paints the opposition party as a bunch of kooks & will no doubt steer some swing voters in middle America away for Kerry. The more the merrier. And the more “Fuck Bush!” signs, the better. They have every right to assemble on protest.

I will say this: I don’t care for the timing or location of the convention, either. I think the GOP is trying to be too clever with the 9/11 anniversary.

Also, there were connections between Iraq and al Qaeda. I suggest you read Stephen Hayes book, The Connection. I haven't read it yet, but I have read his Weekly Standard pieces that provide the gist of it.

Dude said...

You suggest reading a book you haven't read? In that case, you should check out "The Sexy Years: Discover the Hormone Connection--The Secret to Fabulous Sex, Great Health, and Vitality, for Women and Men"
by Suzanne Somers. (