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a22: bush protest

*** thank you, portland protesters ***

May we all gather courage from what happened in Portland. May our numbers swell and fill the streets until our people take their fingers out of their ears and ask questions before walking to the end of protected driveways with safe placards of support.

Thank you, Portland protesters. It is YOU who can save hundreds of thousands of lives.
From: "radtimes" < resist@best.com>
To:
Sent: Monday, August 26, 2002 1:28 PM
Subject: Thank You, Portland Patriots


Thank You, Portland Patriots

By: Lisa Thomas - 08/26/02

Supposedly, every voice that cries out represents a thousand too reserved to do so. In such case, the Portland Protest on August 22, garnering the presence of about 2,000 participants, represents at least 2 million of us.

Thank you, to each activist who cared enough to leave the comfort and distortion of tv coverage, who was brave enough to stand before faceless, formidable riot police whose photos make us shudder with the knowledge of 1939 and what happened when there was no one to protest. Without you, August 22 would have passed, simply another day of George Bush appearing to adoring fans to raise money for his party and his agenda. Without you, the media would have had nothing to show but blindly adoring blank faces standing at the ends of driveways with signs saying, "We love you," as the Bush motorcade passed by. This is all the world would have seen.

In addition to the rage, the oh-so-justifiable rage, there is a kind of love in it by those who would face the spray, the rubber bullets, the humiliation, much of it for the unaware people at the ends of their safe driveways with their approved "I love you" placards. No danger for them, as you have absorbed it in your prayer that they too see what is happening.

We cannot afford to let this protest slip by. You have begun an awakening, and as an old Vietnam war protester, I see it happening. At first they completely ignored us. Then the public saw us on television. It became a swollen determination, so hardened by the passion to put truth before the blind that it went on to become a fierce movement the world will never forget. It went on to result in Kent State. But mostly, it went on to end the horrors of an unjustified and immoral war.

We won, if one ever wins after so many deaths. We won because there were those with the spirit and bravery of last week's Portland Patriots. Without those voices forty years ago, the death tolls in Vietnam would have continued to rise. Boys who came home to join "Veterans for Peace" would have returned in body bags. Without these voices now in Portland, the country would know only what the right wing tries to portray, sky-high popularity ratings and support for a man who is at the moment the most dangerous person on earth.

May we all gather courage from what happened in Portland. May our numbers swell and fill the streets until our people take their fingers out of their ears and ask questions before walking to the end of protected driveways with safe placards of support.

Thank you, Portland protesters. It is YOU who can save hundreds of thousands of lives.
-----------

Lisa Thomas is a contributer to Liberal Slant, Online Journal, and political columnist (The Raven's Nest at  http://www.practicalradical.com)

homepage: homepage: http://www.practicalradical.com

uhm 28.Aug.2002 14:35

me

Portland Patriots? Hmm? well i guess since the definition of patriotism is one who sees no seperation between church and state, and cares not for igdigenous rights, hmm. I think not. Thanks for the thanks, but no thanks.

?? ?? 28.Aug.2002 16:02

Objective

Uhm: Is it not people like you who make the movement so fragmented and useless? If it doesn't stand up to the scrutiny of your little tiny corner of the world, it isn't worth saying or doing, right? There are many evil evil people out there who seek to destroy us all, and all you can think to do is criticize people who are, for the most part, on your side. These times are not ones for petty bickering about the finer points. There are some dangerous people out there, let us set aside our petty differences and for the sake of life as we know it stop being so judgemental. Isn't it that sort of unbending sectism that makes the world the way it is right now?

Uhm 28.Aug.2002 16:28

J

First commenter: your an IDIOT! Patriotism is wanting
the best for your country- and our country is not
identified with ANY religions. Read the CONSTITUTION OF
THE UNITED STATES...

you're welcome 28.Aug.2002 16:36

kurtkabang

you're welcome

Thank you, Lisa 28.Aug.2002 16:40

sue

for the thoughtful comment. It is hopeful to see that the numbers of people paying attention are rising, and they are. Now we must continue. Resist fear and apathy!

We were merely a portent of doom for Bush 28.Aug.2002 19:58

One of Billions, worldwide

What was heartening was not that activists refused to remain silent, but that ordinary, comfortable citizens got out of their chairs to join us or saw us on the way home and raised their voices with ours. They were the majority of faces at the portest. The Smirking Monkey administration has been doomed to one-termdom by its extremities of greed, corruption and autocracy. Somebody wake up Karl Rove, he lost the heartland. Hang just on a little longer folks, the groundswell's filing in behind us.

i posted this 29.Aug.2002 09:35

simone

Regarding the whole "patriotism" question in this article:


I did think it was strange that the author framed the article in terms of "patriotism," which i sure as fuck don't want to advocate! I thought the overall point of the article was so positive, however, that i posted it. it wouldn't have been right of me to tweak or re-write someone else's article, so i just put the part i thought was the main point about saving hundreds of thousands of lives and "let's draw inspiration" from this awesome protest in the summary section.

Also, while i disagree with this person's view of patriotism (& probably capitalism and a bunch of other things), we're on the same side in the fight for justice and I'll stand shoulder to shoulder with her or anyone else who wants to stop this war. if we actually want to make them back off the war shit, then we _have_ to unite all that can be united; which of course means that there will still be major disagreements within the ranks of the movement. (Anti-capitalists are great, but we can't stop the war alone, same goes for any other _single_ grouping of people.)

Undo the Orwellian Translations! 29.Aug.2002 20:17

Protestor-Patriot

Just as support for "democracy" has been orwellized by the powers that be to mean supporting dictators who will to the bidding of Washington politicians, the word "patriot" has been hijacked and is now associated with blind, jingoistic, violent nationalism. We should reclaim our language while it is still possible to articulate dissent.

PATRIOT n. One who loves and supports one's own COUNTRY.

COUNTRY n. 2. The whole land of a nation or state.

So tree-huggers, those fighting strip-mining, clear-cutting, the poisoning of rivers/streams/water tables or reducing the damage by reducing/reusing/recycling ...THESE are the patriots who love and support "The whole land of a nation or state."

Those who would rape and pilage the land for a few bits of silver are not.

COUNTRY n. 3. The people of a nation or state.

So those fighting racism, sexism and other abuse of their sisters and brothers, aiding the homeless, caring for the aged, falling in love [with other Americans], etc, etc. ...THESE are the patriotic Americans who love and support "The people of a nation or state."

Not those who repress dissent. Not those who refuse to pay living wages. Not those who demonize teen mothers or welfare recipients or young folks in general. Not those who order chemical weapons used on civilians. Not those who throw fellow Americans in jail becuase of the color of their skin.

COUNTRY n. There is **NO** entry that says "The leader (elected or selected) of a nation or state"
Nor an entry for "The Armed Forces of a nation or state."
Nor for "The largest businesses of a nation or state."
That would be [literal] fascism. Hitler's government had a slogan somthing like One Leader, One Army, One Nation.
Let's not go there.

I actually referred to myself as a patriot, for the first time in a long time / maybe ever, last fourth of July becuase I was doing what any patriotic American should do to commorate the Declaration of Independence: telling goverment officials where to stick their tyranny.

During the gulf war, a couple of agressive 300-pound rabid nationalists asked me "do you know where we got our freedoms?!" Meaning, presumably, that I should support sending my brothers and sisters to die or be mutilated in an effort to kill destitute people halfway around the world with whom I had no quarrel. The answer is: "Yes! By fighting our own goverment every step of the way!"

* Independence from England
* Adding Bill of rights to Constitution
* Right of non-rich males to vote
* Right of slaves to be (sort-of) free
* Right of females to vote
* Right of blacks to use (most of) same facilities as whites
etc. etc.

NONE were won by killing darker-skinned poor people halfway around the world. ALL required significant struggle against our own goverments. Plug up the memory hole! Undo the newspeak! Be proud to be an American...dissenter.

The Whole Wide World 30.Aug.2002 07:51

world-wide

protester-patriot:

Hi. Hell yeah, you're right that you gotta always fight against the government! Let me ask you: does your patriotism extend to embracing the american flag?

If we want to stop this war, it's a positive thing to have people of different viewpoints -- that means there's a lot of us, and we're working for justice TOGETHER. We SHOULD all be doing this together, embracing our diversity.

However, the problem i have with "patriotism" and the american flag, is that i think we gotta say the whole world comes first. They burn that damn blood-soaked rag in demos all around the world because the U.S. oppresses and dominates whole countries and peoples for its own profit and empire. My loylaty is to the people of the world, not a "country," and sure as fuck not this country.

*********** Of all the tyrants and oppressors in the world, there is none that has caused more untold misery and committed more screaming injustices against the people of the world than the rulers of the U.S. ****************

Pondering Patriotism 30.Aug.2002 11:46

Nova katastrof@suomi24.fi

Quoting Protestor-Patriot: "Hitler's government had a slogan somthing like One Leader, One Army, One Nation."

My humble recalling about the aforism:

'Ein Volk, Ein Reich, Ein Führer', meaning "One nation(people), one state, one leader". In other words, people of a state should be of one race, that state ruled by a despote or dictator. Not a promising formula, and real-life tests lead to a catastrophy beyond imagination. That doesn't mean someone wouldn't try it again...

By the way, original dictators were not bad guys, but selected by a senate to guide the state through difficult times, a war for example. They had absolute power - for six months. Then senate decided whether they continued or not. Of course, eventually appeared dictators who refused to retire, became tyrants (= 'terrorist ruler', literally, believe or not), and gave all dictators the bad name they have now.

Treat people according to their behaviour, not their name. There were nazis who didn't accept death camps, there are terrorists who don't target civilians. On the other hand, police, "to protect and to serve", can turn out to be a violent oppressor who gasses kids, and democratically elected leader a double-crossing opportunist plotting to run with the cash.

A patriot loves his/her country, but may still be a nasty person. Moreover, patriots have turned against each other many times, because love to one's nation isn't necessarely enough if other opinions differ too much (like how to serve the country, and what are the threats). On the other hand, a non-patriot does NOT mean "an enemy of the state", but she/he may prove very helpful and useful to the patriotic cause, if this cause doesn't oppose the non-patriot's philosophy.

O.K, above mumbo-jumbo means: don't quarrel with the Harmless and the Useful, when there are so many Useless and Harmful to deal with...

Europe