Saturday, March 18, 2006

Marching for peace in San Francisco:
Three years later

Today was unseasonably spring-like. After a week of rain and hail, the sun shone and thousands turned out to protest the Iraq war -- and most any other war the U.S. government may be cooking up. The San Francisco Chronicle reported "more than 10,000" protesters which seems about right from what I saw. One doesn't get much of an overview in one of these crowds. Hundreds of other events were held around the country, including in Walnut Creek and Palo Alto in the Bay Area.

There were earnest protesters.

Protesters who have seen too much.

Idiosyncratic protesters.

Protesters from my parish church.

Theatrical protesters.

Drumming protesters.

And Uncle Sam, utterly up-to-date.

Do these events do any good? Sure -- they remind us there are many who share our disgust with the war the government launched and is losing. They cheer us when the ongoing cascade of unnecessary death seems almost too much to bear. They show us to ourselves, throwing off deathly conformity and unleashing anarchic creativity. We hope being part of one of these large, festival-like temporary communities inspires us to continue the hard, daily work of making peace.

This was a good spring day.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the photos!


Anonymous said...

Good Page !

We were actually 25,000 Banging for Peace in San Francisco.

I enjoyed your coverage and pictures, however it would have been nice to also see some of us People of Color?

Idriss Stelley Foundation

Unknown said...

You might like to pop over to The Eagle's Nest at where I have posted lots of photos of the march and rally in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Needless to say we are much smaller than the US although our marches before the war were huge. Last Friday we only managed somewhere from around 300 (my guess) but we were colourful and the shoppers and tourists seemed to enjoy us as we marched past them. At the moment the Commonwealth Games are on and there are lots of international tourists here for that.