Anti-War Protesters Visit the Elams
Living downtown means that life is more interesting. It wasn't any different when an unusual coalition of protesters against poverty combined with people who opposed the war in Iraq. The protesters marched to the Lee Monument in front of our house. The protesters were well behaved, but police weren't taking any chances: the circle was filled with police (including on the roof of our office building) and a fence was erected around the statue. Some pro-troops people came out too, but both sides were very respectful as the police and television cameras looked on. We added a sign of our own that we hung from the offices in support of our troops.
The crowd of about 2,000 was very, um, different. Lots of students, but there was also a strange mix. It was clear that there were many different agendas here. It included everything from gay rights, encouragement to take drugs, Palestinian statehood supporters, anarchists, and those opposed to American corporations. Our friends Bob and Peggy showed up and promptly retired to the porch for some nice red wine. It's always interesting living on Monument Avenue!
Unfortunately, after the protesters left the Lee Monument, a handful number of the crowd got out of control and began some rioting that caused damage to nearby property. It was a particularly sad ending to an event designed to showcase America's unique freedoms.