Since my return from vacation, I've been on west coast time and it's really screwing me up. I took a sleepy pill (non-prescription!) before I started to get all posty here. I hope this makes some sense:
Click on the picture for a link to my vigil photos
I went to the Cindy Sheehan vigil
in Lowell. Kickass Blogger Lynne of Left in Lowell
and Greater Lowell for Peace and Justice
was the organizer. There was a very good turnout of 70 or so folks. Not bad for only three days notice.
I was pleased to see folks from the DFA
group that I go to in Acton (but it meets in Littleton - yeah, I know, but hey, it's closer for me than Acton and don't forget that this was originally the Lowell DFA!) I was glad that our DFA group decided to join up with GLPJ instead of doing something on our own. I think whenever possible we should use our allies to concentrate our efforts for common goals. There was also some folks at the vigil that I met earlier this year at the Equality Rallies that GLPJ organized. Always nice to see friendly faces.
There was a fairly good cross section of people there, although, I always wish that there were more people of color in attendance. I don't have any evidence to back it up, but I feel that minorities and people of modest incomes in particular are being heavily recruited to fight this unjust war. It's a reminder that we, as progressives, have some work to do in regards to outreach in minority communities.
I came across only one person who supports Bush. I was standing on the corner taking a break because we were required to keep moving if we wanted to demonstrate. Then this car pulled up to the light. The driver rolled down the window and started yelling something to the effect of, "Bush rules!" "Insert various disparaging comments here." I just looked at the middle-aged guy and asked him if he was in the military. He replied that he was not, so I told him, that if he supported the war so much, why wasn't he off fighting it? He said that he had served previously. I thanked him for his service and told him that since the military was apparently so desperate for recruits, I was sure that they'd be happy to have such a strong supporter of the war back fighting for them. He rolled up his window and drove off.
Yeah, that's what I thought.
I had an opportunity to talk to Mike in Chelmsford
, who is in my DFA group. I enjoy talking to him (even though, he never remembers me...) because he's very smart. We talked awhile about how well the demonstration was going and how much work we have ahead of us as we head into the next election cycle. Then the talk turned back to this terrible war. We both agreed that this war is wrong, and that the Bush Administration has completely bungled it. I asked Mike, like I ask many progressive-type folks, what we should do about stopping the war. We all know that our presence in Iraq is making the entire region more unstable, but I think we all also know what would happen if the US was to pull out too soon. Complete civil war.
There just aren't any good options here. I wished we had the leadership to look at this catastrophe and come up with some real solutions, instead of the same ole punk-ass, chickenhawks that say we "should stay the course." Yeah, that's working out well for us and the Iraqis.
This subject makes my brain (and my heart) hurt.
Good work on the vigil though.UPDATE: Lynne has a kickass post up at Left in Lowell about the vigil. Go read it NOW! zzzz...zzzz...