Even when it rains

I forgot my camera (sorry no pictures this time) but I wanted to write about my experience at the protest in NY this past weekend.  Despite the rain, there were about 50,000 people who showed up and marched down Broadway.  I felt like the protest had a very different feel from the one in DC last month.  It was somber and felt more like an obligation than an exercise in democracy.

I had friends telling me throughout the week that it was going to rain.  My response?  If I’m marching to end the death and destruction this war has caused, on principle alone I can’t back out because I don’t want to stand in the rain for a few hours. 

At least I wasn’t the only one who felt that way…..

I came up to NJ with a friend of mine and we stayed at his brother’s house for the weekend.  I got them both to come along with me to the march where we met up with srkp23.  Neither of my friends had been to a large protest before and I was very happy to have increased my group by 200% from the last time.  I was especially happy to have them talk politics with us at the bar later. 

When srkp23 and I were making our plans in the morning we both agreed that the weather was irrelevant and that we should still go.  Even if only a small amount of people showed up or the weather got worse.  When we got there later it was amazing to see how many other people were just as committed to the cause.  I think the crowd might have been larger if the weather was nice, but it was not a small protest by any means.  It stretched by for blocks, Broadway was closed off and the streets were filled.

The fact that so many people did show up lent itself to the mood of obligation and solidarity I felt.  Protesting had become a necessity rather than a show of support (or in this case disapproval).  And that’s what protesting is, at its core.  A necessity.  By no means is it the only necessary action, but it is part of a larger movement to instigate change.  And each part of the movement is an act of necessity.

The phone calls, emails, blogs and donations are all in essence passive aggressive ways to express political views.  The aggressive ways to express your views are protesting, civil disobedience and holding political office.  There should be a strong combination of all of these actions to effectively bring about an overall change. 

Although, I personally feel the country is at a point that we are taking far too long for the amount of shit we need to fix immediately.  I’m worried it will be too late before enough people get involved to repair the mess we’re all in. 

I think at this point it is going to take something very drastic to awaken the rest of the country.  Sometimes I have the feeling that America, as a country, is waiting to make sure it is absolutely necessary before they collectively take drastic aggressive action.  I just wonder what the tipping point will be.

Possibly Marshall Law?  That or the draft being reinstated.  Also, if we bomb Iran.  That might be enough.

I guess it’s just whichever happens first. 

Because right now, 2 wars, the looting of our treasury, hundreds of thousands dead (war, poverty, prison, violent crime, heath care system, suicides, Katrina and September 11th), the abuse of our military, millions loosing their homes, personal debt beyond available wages, cost of living sky rocketing, members of our government being charged worldwide with crimes against humanity, the erosion of civil liberties, and a president who is clearly mentally disturbed has not been enough to rouse the general populace to take aggressive political action.

I obsess over politics sometimes.  Some of those close to me say it’s not worth the aggravation and I’m just upsetting myself for no reason.  I would agree if I was obsessing over Hollywood starlets.  But politics can change everything in your world before you even realize it’s happening.  Look at Iraq.  One day they had a thriving economy, schools, jobs, electricity.  Now they have nothing.  And it is all because of politics.  There are very real consequences that could change your life forever in an instant.  It’s worth being upset over and it is worth fighting for and it is defiantly worth a Saturday.  I’m broke, I’m busy and very disheartened.

And that is precisely why I show up.  Even when it rains.

Also posted at dailykos.


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  1. Here is a great video srkp23 sent me from the march in NY.

    • pfiore8 on October 30, 2007 at 5:36 am

    and there are too many that are mutually exclusive

    what is dawning on me is if the war is so bad and all the bad things are so bad, why not for everybody? if what’s good or right is so right, then why not for everybody? or mostly everybody.

    if it’s so dire, why not for people with enough power to know? or others with enough access to find out?

    why are we here? there is nothing, it seems, to pull it or us all together.

    there’s no where for us all to meet. we, in our compartmentalized alliances, simply do not believe each other. we don’t believe each other’s science, god, or philosophy.

    it is a spectacular collision and i’m not sure what will be left after we are all done colliding.

    • pfiore8 on October 30, 2007 at 5:37 am

    and i’m glad you showed up

    • srkp23 on October 31, 2007 at 2:17 am

    I forgot to say that I have a little souvenir from our march … a cold! 🙂

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