For Great Justice, Take Off Every Zig

I sent a few hours this morning wandering around the United for Peace and Justice rally and march. It was entertaining to see the varieties of different people that were out in opposition to the war. There were guitar playing hippies that were likely on the Mall 40 years ago protesting Vietnam. Black-clad anarchist teenagers with their faces covered, waving somehow angry looking flags. The hip-hop contingent holding a freestyle competition with an anti-war theme. A troupe of very peppy young girls dressed all in red who danced and sung their way through the crowd.

Unfortunately the camera that I recently stole only has it’s default 512mb card, so I wasn’t able to take many pictures. I did get a couple though.


Dancers

These were the cheerful dancing ladies in red. I had hoped to see a meeting between them and the 20 or so pro-war demonstrators, but the police had those folks cordoned off. Probably best given the invectives that were being bandied about.


Signage

It wouldn’t be a demonstration without signs. I thought mine was entertaining, but nothing like Ben’s “Another Porn Star Against the War”


Free Hugs

Ben availed himself frequently of the free love being offered. This particular fellow visited everyone in our group and saw that we all got a little action.


The Crowd

There were quite a few people out, but it was hard to get a sense of the size since they were spread over five or six blocks of the Mall.


When the Saints Go Marching

Once the march around the Capitol started though, you got a sense of the enormity. This is the beginning of the funnel and there were about this many people walking by continually for an hour. The only real number that I’ve seen so far is “less than 100,000.”

It was interesting how everyone was there to join in a common cause, but there were still lots of behaviors to establish an individual identity in the crowd. I liked it because as much as it made it a unified statement to some external group, it was an entertaining spectacle for the folks participating. I also realized a certain reluctance on my part to really join in. I’m still doing a pretty jaded bit. I think it really started to set in with the re-election of Bush. The starving African children and more recent gay-marriage bans have helped keep it in place. Do many of the rest of you feel fundamentally out of touch with the pulse of the American populace? There were lots of people chanting “This is what democracy looks like” today. I wish that I believed that.

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