THIS IS WHY BUSH WAS SAFE
Security officers stand in front
of demonstrators against US President George W. Bush along the
Inaugural Parade route in Washington, DC. Though the demonstrations were
peaceful -- mainly booing of Bush's motorcade and marches and rallies --
about 50 anarchists tried in one incident to push past security
checkpoints and advance toward the parade route, but were pushed back by
(AFP/Leslie E. Kossoff)
Inaugural protests run the gamut
By PHILIP GAILEY, Times Editor of Editorials
Published January 16, 2005
The inauguration of a president is a solemn and high occasion, with
enough grandeur and panoply to be worthy of a king. At its best, this
quadrennial, high-noon moment, which belongs as much to the people as to
the president, can be inspiring and uplifting. On the fringes, however,
it can be anything but.
President Bush won't be sworn in to a second term until Thursday, but
his inauguration already has spawned controversy (critics say it is too
extravagant at a time of war) and sideshows (an atheist and religious
conservatives are fighting over the event's religious trappings) that in
some ways tell us more about the state of the nation than the
president's State of the Union address.
The protests being organized around the Bush inauguration range from
healthy expressions of dissent to utter silliness. Some of them could
have been scripted by Michael Moore, the radical filmmaker of Fahrenheit
9/11 fame, or infamy.
One Christian conservative group threatened to go to court to
overturn a Secret Service ban on, among other things, crosses of a
certain size. Leaders of the group demanded in a letter to know why the
Secret Service, which is in charge of presidential security, did not
prohibit symbols of other religions, like the Star of David or the
Crescent Moon with Star. The Secret Service tried to explain that it was
not banning the Christian cross per se, just crosses large enough to
deliver a good whack to someone's head.
On another front in the religion wars, Michael Newdow, the California
atheist best known for trying to remove "under God" from the
Pledge of Allegiance, filed a lawsuit to bar prayer at Bush's
inauguration, a practice that's been going on for more than 200 years
without bringing down the wall of separation between church and state.
On Friday, a federal judge threw out the lawsuit. Will Newdow now file
another lawsuit to prohibit the House and the Senate from opening their
daily proceedings with prayer, or to bar members of Congress from
holding prayer breakfasts in the U.S. Capitol?
Newdow doesn't give up easily. More than two years ago, he filed a
lawsuit to strike "under God" from the pledge that his young
daughter and her classmates recited in school. A federal appeals court
ruled in his favor, setting off a fit of national outrage before the
U.S. Supreme Court cooled things down by ruling that Newdow lacked
standing to file the suit because he did not have legal custody of his
daughter. He refiled the lawsuit recently, this time adding plaintiffs
who do have legal custody of their children. Supreme Court justices had
better hold on to their robes if Newdow wins again in lower courts.
Newdow is said to be a smart man, so he should know that the Founding
Fathers were a lot more comfortable with religious invocations at public
events than modern-day liberals and secularists. He can blame George
Washington, our first president, for making God a fixture at
inaugurations. Washington added "so help me God" to the oath
of office and then kissed the Bible on which he had placed his hand.
Succeeding presidents followed Washington's example and kissed the
Bible until Franklin Pierce broke the tradition. Not only did he not
kiss the Bible, but he "affirmed" rather than swore to uphold
the Constitution, so help him God. As far as I can tell, the religious
right of those days didn't go ballistic or try to impeach him.
I haven't heard anything to suggest that Bush plans to restore the
Bible-kissing tradition, but can you imagine the reaction if he did? The
cable television gasbags would feast on it for days.
Meanwhile, anti-Bush protesters, in the best tradition of political
dissent, are planning a host of activities to show their disapproval of
the president. Some groups are urging Americans not to buy anything on
inauguration day - nothing, not even an order of freedom fries. Those
who want to do even more are being told to cancel their cable and phone
In New Orleans, protesters are planning to hold a traditional jazz
funeral to mourn the death of democracy, and in Washington, others will
line the inaugural parade route and turn their backs as the president's
motorcade goes by. About the only thing missing is staging a mock vote
recount in Ohio and declaring John Kerry the winner.
Philip Gailey's e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
|Protests in store for the big day
|WASHINGTON - Thousands
of protesters are expected to descend on Washington this week in
what could be an unprecedented level of inaugural discord.
Groups angry about the Iraq war, the economy,
President Bush's environmental policies and myriad other issues
promise to put their mark on Thursday's celebration with several
marches, rallies and acts of civil disobedience.
One group plans to carry 1,000 coffins
representing some of the soldiers who have died in Iraq and
another is planning for hundreds to turn their backs on the
president as he makes his way down Pennsylvania Avenue.
All of the groups say their events will be
One anti-war group - the A.N.S.W.E.R.
Coalition - will occupy bleachers along the parade route, an
unusual concession that resulted from negotiations with the U.S.
Park Police. The group
is being allowed to occupy a 210-foot-long stretch in a 4,000
foot-long parade route.
Several other protests will not be along the
The D.C. Anti-War Network is planning a march
and rally that will culminate with a ''die-in'' at Lafayette
Park, near the White House, where people will lie on the ground
- simulating deaths in Iraq - in addition to carrying
Anti-war sentiment is only one theme in the
counter-inaugural events. Thousands are expected to protest
Bush's record on civil rights, abortion rights, environmental
issues and health care. Others are angry about voting problems
during November's presidential election and the influence of
corporations in government.
A group called the D.C. Anarchist Resistance
is planning an anti-government march
and rally in downtown Washington that will include music,
dancing and large puppets, including one of a giant spider,
meant to personify capitalism and its ''legs'' of poverty and
exploitation, said a spokeswoman for the group.
To show their disgust with George W. Bush's re-election, on
Inauguration Day, his opponents will turn their back on his motorcade,
"refuse to spend one dime," black out their Web sites, stage
mock jazz funerals, wear black armbands and stage demonstrations from
Palo Alto to Atlanta.
But four years of such Bush-bashing theatrics didn't produce a
change in November. And with Republicans controlling Congress and the
White House, some of the president's most vocal critics have spent the
past two post-election months making plans on how to begin preaching
beyond the choir box, starting Thursday.
Bottom line: less emphasis on mass demonstrations -- which Bush
famously dismissed as "focus groups" -- and more on reaching
out to Americans who oppose the war but haven't publicly shown it.
"We've got to start reaching out to people who don't agree
with us," said Leslie Cagan, United for Peace's national
coordinator. In its recent short- term plan, the 850-organization
umbrella behind many of the nation's larger protests over the past few
years conceded that "the anti-war movement must reshape its
While the Inauguration Day protest coverage will undoubtedly focus
on made-for-TV flourishes and mad-as-hell gestures, some of the larger
anti-war and progressive organizations say they have realized that
just being against Bush isn't enough anymore.
"The resistance has to be issue-based," said Aimara Lin,
national coordinator of Not in Our Name, another major anti-war
organization that has done a lot of soul-searching since the election.
"The movement needs to reach outside the normal groups of people
we usually touch and bring in people who feel the same way, but are
too fearful to say so."
That includes corralling the energy of the people behind the
Inauguration Day protests.
"If they're going to go beyond the personal satisfaction of,
'I dissed the president and it made me feel good,' they're going to
have to talk to many more people and give them something different to
think about," said Shaun Bowler, professor of political science
at UC Riverside and an expert on direct democracy.
"You can listen to Pacifica Radio, check out the Bay Area
papers or the (British) Guardian, and watch 'Fahrenheit 9/11' and 'The
Daily Show,' and that's great," Bowler said. "But after
everyone whips themselves up into an outrage, all they have talked to
is their fellow travelers."
In the most detailed way in its three-year history, United for
Peace is committing to paper its organizing plans, using
neighbor-to-neighbor connections reminiscent of how Republicans turned
out their base in the presidential election. Its "Winter/Spring
Organizing Drive" plan encourages its smaller member groups to
"make three new relationships" with organizations and
communities not previously involved in anti-war work. Big-city
organizations should connect with a dozen.
The group just hired the Rev. Osagyefo Sekou, a Pentecostal
minister in New York, to lead its outreach effort to places United for
Peace believes will be critical to reaching a wider audience: the
nation's churches, synagogues and mosques.
In the next few weeks, Sekou will release what he calls a kit to
help religious leaders craft Sunday sermons against the war, form
anti-war groups among their followers and preach to children.
"We need to break the monopoly on 'God talk' the religious
right has in this country," Sekou said.
After the election, national organizers from Not in Our Name, an
anti-war group with offices in Oakland, convened for a postmortem.
Afterward, they acknowledged to members that "surely, the goal
expressed by all was the need of resistance to break outside the
anti-war 'movement.' "
The challenge: Of Not in Our Name's 10 chapters, only two are
located in states that went for Bush in November.
"We've talked about getting into more of the red states, but
right now, we don't have a lot of people on the ground there,"
said Lin of Not in Our Name. "But we've been hearing a lot more
from them since the election. And when people from the red states
call, they get special attention."
Two other constituencies will be actively courted, said United for
Peace's Cagan and other anti-war leaders: returning Iraq war veterans
and military families. Activists will help returning vets speak to
military support groups, as well as to the media.
"They are key," University of San Francisco political
science Professor Stephen Zunes, an expert on social movements, said
of veterans and their families. "They can go into a lot of places
where many activists can't go."
To expand the number of anti-war supporters, Zunes and other
progressive writers suggest that activists make inroads to sympathetic
politicians, particularly conservatives.
Writing in the progressive Web site Alternet, Erik Leaver, policy
director at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, urged
activists to "work with (anti-war) folks across the political
spectrum, including Rep. Howard Coble." The conservative North
Carolina Republican recently said it was time to start pondering a
phased U.S. withdrawal from Iraq.
But Coble might not be a totally sympathetic ear.
"The congressman never said he was against the war or that it
was a bad idea to invade," said Coble's chief of staff Ed
McDonald. "Sure, he'd be willing to sit down and talk with
anybody, but he's not interested in working with any of the groups who
are coming to Washington to say things against the president."
Some anti-war activists, however, such as San Francisco resident
Marvin Feldman, have little time for politicians -- even liberal ones.
"We're not going to be working with the Democrats
anymore," said Feldman, a coordinator with United for Peace and
Justice Bay Area. "We feel let down that the Democrats ran such a
wimpy campaign" and didn't more forcefully oppose the war, he
Instead, the organization will concentrate on reaching out to
unions, religious congregations and organizations in communities of
Such disagreement among left-leaning organizations and interest
groups isn't new.
Richard Becker, an organizer with International ANSWER, which is
organizing an Inauguration Day rally in San Francisco's Civic Center,
said, "The question is, can we find a way to look at each other
and see that each of our particular issues is really deeply
As some progressives ponder how to unify their message during
Bush's second term, others will begin the sniping on Inauguration Day.
Progressive leaders acknowledge that to some on the left, there is
a cathartic benefit from such gestures as Turn Your Back on Bush, in
which protesters will turn away from the president along the motorcade
One of the organizers of Not One Damn Dime Day, which urges people
not to spend any money Thursday, acknowledged that there's no way to
measure its effect.
Jesse Gordon, an activist in Cambridge, Mass., who has assumed the
role of spokesman for the Internet-spread campaign even though he
doesn't know who started it, said seeing a one-day dip on the
country's economic output isn't necessarily the campaign's primary
"People want a way to make their voices heard," Gordon
said. He plans to use the thousands of e-mails he's received to begin
a mailing list of like- minded souls that he can tap into for future
Similar plans have been laid by the Detroit-based organizer of
Black- Thursday.com, which is touting a no-work-on-Inauguration Day
campaign, and Citizens Take Charge, which is organizing a one-day
gasoline boycott out of Orlando, Fla..
"When people go out and do something like this, it feels
good," said Elizabeth Morgan, co-founder of Citizens Take Charge.
However, of the 10 boycott captains lined up for Thursday's inaugural
boycott, only two are in red states.
"But after this, look," Morgan said, "we've got to
reach out beyond where we're at."
E-mail Joe Garofoli at email@example.com.
Jan. 16, 2005 9:32 a.m. EST
Inaugural Protesters Threaten Violence
While most groups traveling to Washington, D.C., to
protest President Bush's inauguration next Thursday say they'll be
nonviolent, an angry cadre of anti-American radicals has made it known
that it intends to do everything possible to disrupt the event.
The U.S. Presidential Inauguration is one of the grandest
ceremonies of the ruling class in the land. As anarchists, it's a prime
opportunity to shatter these illusions of grandeur by crashing this
decadent display of arrogance and wealth."
In a statement posted to its Web site, the D.C. Anarchist Resistance,
for instance, sounds hell-bent on causing trouble:
The group continues:
"There's nothing left to salvage in this empire that is the U.S.
government. It's time to bring it down. ... This January 20th, let's
bring anarchy to the streets of DC - make resistance visible, and ring
in the next four years with a smash!"
The anarchists boast that they have the endorsement of a coalition of
other protest groups, including the Urban Guerrilla Liberation Front,
the NYC Counter-Inaugural Cluster and the CrimethInc. Ex-Workers'
Collective, Action Faction.
In its own inauguration protest manifesto, the NYC Counter-Inaugural
"If the police again attempt to forgo their own laws and arrest
demonstrators, we will defend ourselves against this unlawful state
repression. A space will be made for people to exercise their First
Amendment rights whether the police allow it or not. We will not submit
to illegal arrests, unlawful searches, or checkpoints."
Other protest organizers, however - like ANSWER's Bill Hackwell - say
their demonstrations will stay within the bounds of the law.
"Our protests are characterized by being large, loud and
militant - but peaceful," Hackwell told the New York Daily News.
The D.C. Park Police say they have the situation well in hand.
"We don't expect too many problems with [these groups]. They are
familiar to us," Sgt. Scott Fear told the News.
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|Jan. 17, 2005, 10:11AM
All eyes on the capital
Control center, throngs of police and military bring most security
By MICHAEL HEDGES
Copyright 2005 Houston Chronicle Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - While thousands brave the chilly streets of Washington
to watch the inaugural parade Thursday and catch a glimpse of President
Bush, a select group of law enforcement experts will view the event in a
more intense, different way.
At a new high-tech center several miles away in Northern Virginia,
agents will stare at plasma television screens and computer monitors
showing the oath-taking in front of the Capitol, the parade route and
other critical areas. They will see satellite images, radar imagery and
video from surveillance cameras on buildings and from fixed-wing
aircraft and helicopters. Others will study three-dimensional computer
simulations of potential trouble spots and projections of where toxins
would blow if released into the air.
The 55th U.S. inauguration, the first since the worst terrorist
attack on American soil took place on Sept. 11, 2001, might be the most
security-conscious event in the nation's history, relying on new
technology and overlapping layers of law enforcement to protect Bush and
other national leaders from a terrorist attack or other harm.
"This is the tightest security plan I believe we've ever been
able to set up," said Bob Stephan, a special assistant to Homeland
Security Secretary Tom Ridge. "We're going to have eyes on all the
places (the president) is going to be, and a lot of other places
A new joint operations center planned after the Sept. 11 attacks for
so-called national special security events will be operational for the
first time, placing all the federal and local law enforcement decision
makers under one roof about 25 miles from the White House with instant
access to every possible technological innovation, officials said.
A quicker response
"It allows you, if something bad happens, to look across the table
at people from the other agencies involved and make instant decisions.
It cuts down on response time," Stephan said.
That kind of coordination and communication is vital when combining
the efforts of more than 50 local, state and federal law enforcement
agencies into an interlocking web of security, officials said.
Planning for the safety of national leaders with a role in the
inauguration has resembled a military campaign, and the people involved
constitute a small army. About 7,200 military personnel will help with
security and logistics at inaugural events, along with 6,000 state,
local and federal law enforcement officers.
With the inauguration's approach, there has been an almost unsettling
lack of "chatter" picked up by intelligence services that
monitor threats, officials said.
Ridge said there was no specific reason to raise the national
terrorism alert for the event.
"(But) the fact that the decibel level is down doesn't really
mean that we would ever be less vigilant," Ridge said.
"This is the most visible manifestation of our democracy."
Visitors to Washington for the inauguration are likely to feel that
they're inside a protective bubble.
Many visitors will encounter bomb-sniffing dogs or specialists in
weapons of mass destruction filtering through the crowd with
As in previous inaugurations, they'll see uniformed Secret Service
sniper teams on roofs and phalanxes of District of Columbia police
officers along the inaugural route. People driving in from hotels in
nearby Northern Virginia may spot U.S. Coast Guard vessels patrolling
the Potomac River to prevent any attackers from infiltrating the
That will be a tiny percentage of the security arrangements, which
also encompass testing the food of those lunching with the president to
controlling the skies over Washington for many hours before and after
"There will be major enhancements to past security plans, but
the general public will notice little of it," said Tom Mazur,
spokesman for the U.S. Secret Service, the agency in charge of inaugural
The security measures have been unfolding for a year.
As the event neared, leaders of security teams met to drill on
handling scenarios such as a suicide bombing or the release of a
biological or chemical weapon.
Last week, representatives of all agencies involved in inaugural
security met and went over plans a final time.
Sensors will be in place to detect the release of toxins. And the
government's explosives experts in the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco,
Firearms and Explosives plan a robust response if a bomb threat
John Malone, the ATF's special agent in charge for Washington, said
two of the agency's four national response teams, composed of chemists,
investigators and other experts, will be at hand. Squads of anti-bomb
technicians including agents from the FBI, ATF and local police will
deal with suspicious packages, which can be X-rayed if necessary.
The security preparations made some unhappy.
D.C. officials protested the federal government's decision to bill
them $17.3 million from homeland security grants to cover some of the
security costs. Ridge said that was appropriate because the city got the
federal money partly to provide security for federal officials and
Groups planning anti-Bush protests have grumbled that the tight
security plan wedges them into seven designated areas along the
inaugural route, diluting their impact.
At some inaugurations, protesters ranged freely along the parade route
on Pennsylvania Avenue between the White House and the Capitol.
"They are absolutely attempting to keep us away from public
notice," said Mo Alem, a spokesman for the D.C. Anti-War Network, a
group coordinating protests this time.
"It isn't about security — they don't want our message to be
Alem said his group would cooperate with police and stick to
designated areas. But he said he doubted all protesters will be
Some anti-Bush activists have called for an "Inaugural
Charade" in which protesters filter into the crowd along the route
and then turn their backs on the passing president.
Officials said all the overlapping security won't spoil the fun and
historical significance of the day.
"A lot of it will be in the background," Maj. Gen. Galen
Jackman, commander of the Military District of Washington, said. "I
don't think people will feel an encampment mentality."
on Monday, January 17, 2005 by CommonDreams.org
Will the Anti-Inaugural Protests Be Covered?
by Danny Schechter
Some of us are old enough to remember that bright day in
January 1977 when Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter got out of their limo
and strolled down Pennsylvania Avenue to the White House. We
remember it now with nostalgia because that more hopeful American
moment is long gone. Now we have elections deemed "brief
accountability moments" and a garrison state to insure the
trains of social order run on time.
Homeland security? Homeland insecurity is more like it, as new
state of the art police state tactics are introduced to protect
the president from protesters who plan to try to give his
Administration as hard a time as they can.
This year's re-inauguration promises to be more fun and games
and who knows what repressive tactics will be introduced if
somehow the event turns into a street fight or worse. Will there
be another Chicago or Tiananmen Square or just mass arrests like
at the RNC in New York?
The FBI uses a sports metaphor to describe its overkill
approach even as it waves a stick bigger than any Teddy Roosevelt
carried. They can't wait to test out their souped up contain and
control strategies. The testosterone is pumping among the G-Men.
They want to engage.
Reports the Washington Post:
"This is the Super Bowl for us,” said FBI Supervisory
Special Agent James W. Rice II. “Everyone on every team is
dressed up and playing in the game. And the bench is very, very
"The agents and officers at the swearing-in and along the
parade route will have access to the latest tools. Every piece of
technology that exists will be a part of this,” said Rice, who
oversees the National Capital Response Squad.
Underscore that line "Every technology that exists."
But this more than a boys with toys chasing the militant black
bloc around Dupont Circle moment. It could be a turning point in
the history of the republic since the "Sun King," as
Marc Crispin Miller calls GWB, has already made clear that in his
mind at least the election gave him a mandate to do whatever he
wants to do.
Not surprisingly, the protesters will be out in force as they
were in 2000. Back then, the press barely took notice of the
biggest inaugural protest in American history. Writer Dennis Loy
Johnson wrote a must-read little book called "The
Big Chill" on "The great unreported story of the
Bush Inauguration Protests..." (Melville House.)
The protests were ignored, he charges, "There seemed to be
a determined and almost paternalistic effort by the media to
soothe and assure the populace that everything was fine, that the
democracy was running smoothly (as if that was the obligation of
either print or broadcast journalists) that there was, in any case
no dissent except from the usual suspects …"
That was then. That event signaled a new media paradigm for
Last year, the Post's ombudsman Michael Getler investigated
complaints that the Post had been downplaying protests and
minimizing their numbers. He concluded that the complaints were
valid. And it was done as a matter of policy. The paper carried a
mini-mea culpa about its prewar coverage. And then it was back to
news business as usual.
So here we go again as David Admin wrote on RedefeatBush.com
on January 15:
"The Post's coverage of the counter-inaugural in today's
paper uses only 5 of its 1822 words to describe why anyone might
wish to protest the inauguration of George W. Bush -- "Ohio
is a battle cry." The rest trivializes the motivation of the
protesters. An intelligent reader who wishes to discern the answer
cannot grasp why they are protesting. The only possibility the
post offers is that they do so to be cool.
"We look forward with great anticipation to the Post's
ridicule of the Bush inaugural itself, since surely the pomposity
of that event will engender a similar level of jocularity and
arrogance on its part."
The blog at Democrats.com
anticipates the worse: "the protests will be large but will
be subject to a media blackout."
Some protesters fear the lack of coverage may be their own
fault, that it is they who are turning off the press. Here is a
comment by someone called "citizen" on the DC Indymedia
"How can we expect to be taken seriously without good
typography…please I implore you, consult a trained professional
graphic designer when creating any printed materials, particularly
those that are to be seen by the press."
I wish that our media decided what to cover on the basis of
typography. There is more going in here. The Washington Post works
in the bubble of the beltway. It shares the values and logic of
those in power. To them, protesters come from a different country,
perhaps even a different planet, and as such have no claim on
legitimacy or their attention.
So as media critics pounce on the Bush Administration for
subsidizing the likes of conservative pseudo journalist Armstrong
Williams to get its spin into the media, they ignore the way that
our media has allowed itself to be co-opted. Many don't need to be
bought. They are already on board, fully deferential to the
Administration as has been seen over and over again,
Their stance reminds me of a ditty about journalists often
cited in the media in the UK. I am not sure who wrote it.
"You cannot hope to bribe or twist, thank God. There's no
No wonder many protesters don't feel they can't trust the press
corps (or is it corpse?) . Activists feel they have taken sides
even as they mask their agendas with the claims of objectivity.
(Liberal Media, my a--) , In an age of information dominance, they
are the ones being dominated when they are not just getting along
by going along. Far too many in the corporate media world in the
words of Senator Robert Byrd, "have bought it hook line and
Here is an example of how the reporters from the Post seek
guidance from the Administration. As we know, the GOP and the
Administration spends a great deal of time, with help from
pollsters like Frank Luntz, in shaping the language used to
popularize its agenda. We saw it clearly in the war when terms
like "Iraqi Freedom" were on their lips every other
Now as the Administration promotes the privatization of social
security, they depoliticize the issue by repeatedly referencing,
"personal savings accounts" and avoiding unpopular words
like "private." Recently Post reporters spoke to
President Bush about this directly. This revealing exchange item
in which a Post reporter explains that they have been arguing with
the RNC over the proper language to use appease on the Democratic
The Post: Will you talk to Senate Democrats about your
THE PRESIDENT: You mean, the personal savings accounts?
The Post: Yes, exactly. Scott has been --
THE PRESIDENT: We don't want to be editorializing, at least in
The Post: You used partial privatization yourself last year,
THE PRESIDENT: Yes?
The Post: Yes, three times in one sentence. We had to figure
this out, because we're in an argument with the RNC about how we
should actually word this. Mike Allen, the industrious Mike Allen,
THE PRESIDENT: Allen did what now?
The Post: You used partial privatization.
THE PRESIDENT: I did, personally?
The Post: Right.
THE PRESIDENT: When?
The Post: To describe it.
THE PRESIDENT: When, when was it?
The Post: Mike said it was right around the election.
THE PRESIDENT: Seriously?
The Post: It was right around the election. We'll send it over.
THE PRESIDENT: I'm surprised. Maybe I did. It's amazing what
happens when you're tired. Anyway, your question was? I'm sorry
Someone on the site then comments: "What was that? We had
to figure this out, because we're in an argument with the RNC
about how we should actually word this. Why the hell would the WP
bother arguing with the Administration about the language they
choose to use? …They start winning the issue when they get to
frame the issue. Here we go again."
This type of negotiating may be one reason why one of
Washington's great reporters no longer can stomach working for
newspapers like the Times or the Post. He doesn't ask the
Administration how to word things. Seymour Hersh is breaking
stories all by himself for the New Yorker magazine.
His latest--out this week discloses that a new war may be
brewing. Reuters reports: "The United States has been
conducting secret reconnaissance missions inside Iran to help
identify potential nuclear, chemical and missile targets,
The article, by award-winning reporter Seymour Hersh, said the
secret missions have been going on at least since last summer with
the goal of identifying target information for three dozen or more
suspected sites. Hersh quotes one government consultant with close
ties to the Pentagon as saying, "The civilians in the
Pentagon want to go into Iran and destroy as much of the military
infrastructure as possible."
Here we go again again.
So if media outlets can't or won't cover a major war in the
making, is it any surprise that they won't cover the political war
at home, right in their own backyard?
News Dissector Danny Schechter is the "blogger in
chief" at Mediachannel
and directed WMD (Weapons of Mass Deception) a film about the
media coverage of the Iraq war. (www.wmdthefilm.com)
WMD opens at the Village East in New York City February 4th.
|Tuesday, January 18 2005 @ 12:41 PM PST
17 2005 @ 09:33 AM PST
Contributed by: Admin
voters can protest President Bush's second inauguration
Thursday from the comfort of their own homes. Anger at
Bush has inspired national calls to fast, pray, skip
work, buy nothing and wear black.
Protesters plan to turn their backs on Bush
Mon Jan 17, 7:04 AM ET
By Jill Lawrence, USA TODAY
Disaffected voters can protest President Bush's second
inauguration Thursday from the comfort of their own
homes. Anger at Bush has inspired national calls to
fast, pray, skip work, buy nothing and wear black.
Thousands of unhappy Americans are also expected to
converge here, braving unprecedented security to protest
and party. There's a tactic for every taste, from
traditional rallies and marches to quieter plans to
"turn your back on Bush" along the Inaugural
The Florida recount energized protesters at Bush's 2001
inauguration. The primary motivator this time is the war
in Iraq. Sgt. Scott Fear of the U.S. Park Police said
authorities expect an activity level "very similar
to last time." He said two of six protest permits
went to groups supportive of Bush, the rest to
Act Now to Stop War and End Racism (ANSWER), is putting
up bleachers in a park along the Pennsylvania Avenue
parade route. They'll be filled with opponents of the
Iraq war, including veterans, elected officials,
religious leaders and families that have lost relatives
Brian Becker, national coordinator of the protest, says
10,000 people will fit in the park and it is the first
time the anti-war movement has had its own bleachers.
But he calls that only "a partial victory,"
contending inaugural organizers have severely limited
public access along the rest of the parade route. ANSWER
filed a court challenge to the restrictions Friday.
Leaders of TurnyourbackonBush.org also are concerned
about limited space for public viewing. National
organizer Jet Heiko says the group expects thousands of
people from 41 states to travel here for a silent
protest along the parade route. They have been told to
leave anti-Bush buttons, banners and signs at home. They
will signal their opposition to Bush's policies by
turning their backs as his motorcade passes.
The idea is to break through what they see as Bush's
isolation from divergent views. Participants have been
advised to stay calm and silent even if provoked by Bush
Unlike most protests, Heiko says, "there's no
buffer" between participants and those who disagree
with them. "This is a courageous action. It's a
hard action," he says. "It's hard to restrain
yourself when you're feeling angry."
Such restraint does not appeal to all. "We
ourselves think that there should be loud, visible,
boisterous protests that are equal to what the gravity
of the situation is in Iraq," says Becker of
The day promises to be a series of contrasts between
gentility and abandon. Anarchist Resistance Call to
Action says it plans to "bring anarchy to the
streets of DC" during Bush's
"coronation." Bicyclists plan to gather at
Union Station, near the Capitol, for a
"counter-inaugural critical mass bike ride" to
protest sites around town. The D.C. Anti-War Network
(DAWN) is calling for "non-violent civil
disobedience die-ins to draw attention to the dead at
the hands of the Bush administration."
At the Jefferson Memorial, ReDefeatBush is sponsoring a
question-and-answer session on democracy featuring
Thomas Jefferson and Alexis de Tocqueville
impersonators. At the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial,
the satirical cabaret group Billionaires for Bush
("activists for the corporate elite") will
auction off Social Security, the Arctic National
Wildlife Refuge and "other public properties that
need to be corporatized."
As Republican revelers crowd Inaugural Balls, the loyal
opposition won't be bereft. For the serious-minded,
there's a screening of a new documentary on civil rights
activist Bayard Rustin, who organized the 1963 March on
Washington. There's also a candlelight vigil sponsored
by the American Friends Service Committee. It's part of
"Eyes Wide Open," a traveling exhibit that
uses boots, shoes and a 24-foot wall of names to
symbolize troops and civilians killed in Iraq.
For the less earnest, counterinaugural balls run the
gamut from the "Not my president!" punk rock
ball to the Billionaires for Bush
"Re-Coronation" ball ("dress to
oppress"). A political action committee using its
ball as a fundraiser advertises itself as "an
exciting safe haven" for Democrats. ReDefeatBush,
soon to become left.org, promises a "huge dinner
buffet" and free drinks.
|This ConservativePetitions.com Alert is a special message
ALERT: Remember last year, when the radical leftists marched on
Washington, D.C., to protest against President Bush and conservative
values? RightMarch.com got together with other conservative
organizations, secured permits along their march route, and showed up in
the streets to "protest the protesters" -- and we STOLE their
thunder, with the largest counter-protest D.C. has ever seen!
Then, remember when the radical leftists marched in New York City during
the GOP convention, to protest against President Bush and conservative
values? RightMarch.com got together with other conservative
organizations, secured stations along their march route and outside of
their rallies, and showed up in the streets to "protest the
protesters" -- and we STOLE their thunder, snagging 25% of the
media coverage so the "silent majority" could see they weren't
Well, guess what? THEY'RE BAAAAAAACK... and we're going to be right
there at the Presidential Inauguration to confront their LIES with the
Radical left-wing groups like International A.N.S.W.E.R. (that led the
protests against liberating Iraq), United for
Peace and Justice (that led the anti-Bush protests in New York), the DC
Anti-War Network (DAWN), local MoveOn.org chapters, and others are
planning protests against President Bush and conservative values at the
inauguration and parade THIS THURSDAY, January 20th. They'll be having
marches, holding rallies, staging "die-ins" -- some are even
planning to have protesters along the parade route, who will all
"turn their backs on Bush" at the same time.
RightMarch.com is going to be joining our fellow conservatives at
FreeRepublic.com and ProtestWarrior.com in
holding PRO-BUSH DEMONSTRATIONS along the inaugural parade route -- and
we need YOUR help to do it!
If you can be in Washington, D.C. this Thursday, keep reading below for
details on where to meet for the big
counter-protest and demonstrations.
If you can't be there -- we STILL need your help with our costs for this
event. We are devoting extensive time,
resources and energy to ensuring that the protests from the radical
leftists are a public relations DISASTER for
them, and a complete success for the conservative cause.
We'll be there will signs and banners, ready to confront any liberal
assault with the TRUTH. Can you help out TODAY with a donation of $1000,
$500, $250, $100, $50, or even $25? Please click through with your most
generous gift NOW:
Our home base will be at the Navy Memorial, between 7th and 9th Streets,
NW, where in 2001 leftists climbed the
masts and tore down flags and pennants, replacing them with
"anarchist" flags. In order to help prevent a repeat of the
leftist-led assaults and disruptions during the 2001 Inaugural parade,
our friends at FreeRepublic.com have secured a demonstration permit for
this key location along the Inaugural Parade route on Pennsylvania Ave.
Our goal is to give pro-Bush-Cheney people the opportunity to enjoy the
parade and share fellowship with like-minded conservatives while holding
demonstrations in support of the President and his conservative policies
including pro-life, pro-second-amendment, pro-military and pro-war-
on-terrorists. Along with groups like ProtestWarrior.com and
FreeRepublic.com, we intend to protect the President from the character
assassins on the far left that will be in the streets that day.
The plan is to gather at the Navy Memorial with the folks from
FreeRepublic.com and ProtestWarrior.com. Issue-
oriented demonstrators will also be gathering at Freedom Plaza, between
13th and 14th Streets, NW; and Pershing
Park, between 14th and 15th Streets, NW, will be used as the
FreeRepublic.com D.C. Chapter's base of operations.
There will be plenty of law enforcement officers all along the parade
route. Security checkpoints will be established that all who wish to
stand along the parade will have to pass through. The leftists will do
their best to ruin the President's day, but by conservatives coming out
in large numbers to these permitted demonstration areas we can deny them
ground from which to operate from.
Come join us -- either in person, or in spirit!
TAKE ACTION: We would LOVE to see you join us in Washington, D.C.
this Thursday! But if you can't come --
could you still help us with a donation to help defray our costs in time
and manpower, to stand up against the radical
liberal demonstrators? Please click through to give now:
The parade will run from about 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. However, people will be
gathering along the parade route from early
morning on through the afternoon. Click here for a map of the parade
route with the Pro-Bush Demonstration site
circled (red squares are pedestrian entry points):
We will have some signs protesting the radical left there for folks to
hold, and feel free to make your own if you'd
like it to be more specific towards supporting the President. Law
enforcement is prohibiting sticks and dowels,
so you'll have to just carry the board by itself. Also no backpacks,
coolers or any large containers will be permitted,
so travel light.
NOTE: We recognize that not everyone agrees with every one of the
President's policies, but we're asking those who stand with us to set
aside those criticisms just for one day. There will be plenty of
criticism from the radical
left that day. Our job is to represent the 61 million Americans who
voted in record numbers to give the President
a mandate for a conservative agenda. The D.C. Chapter of
FreeRepublic.com has been very generous in reaching out to
RightMarch.com, ProtestWarrior.com and other conservative groups,
inviting them to join them in common cause that day. Let's show our
strength in numbers!
The rules for participating in this exciting demonstration are simple:
No violence, no profanity, no racism, no
provocations, obey the law and treat all law enforcement officers with
If you can join us in D.C., GREAT! And remember, even if you can't come
in person, we still need your thoughts,
your prayers -- and your financial support! Click here to donate today:
If you prefer to contribute by check, please make it out to:
4850 Golden Pkwy., Suite B, #325
Dept. Code conpet
Buford, GA 30518-1712
Be sure to forward this Alert to everyone you know who might want to
attend this GREAT anti-liberal, pro-Bush demonstration, or who might
want to help defray our costs. Thank you!
284 Shalom Road,
Waynesboro, VA 22980
|Protests planned for
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
A series of protests — each attracting thousands of participants,
organizers predict — is planned fortomorrow's presidential
inauguration, despite a security perimeter likely to keep most of the
demonstrators blocks away from the parade route.
Four years ago, for the 2001 inauguration,
authorities implemented checkpoints to screen spectators on the parade
route in part because activists had promised vigorous protests of
President Bush's contested political victory.
But after September 11, 2001, concerns about
homegrown political protests have been eclipsed by an all-out
law-enforcement effort to thwart any terror attack.
Conventional anti-administration demonstrators
are struggling to find ways to express opposition in a city where
security, not political speech, is the priority.
Juliana Landim, a spokeswoman for the D.C.
Anti-War Network (DAWN), says her group, an umbrella coalition mostly
made up of organizations that oppose the war in Iraq, are planning an 11
a.m. permitted rally at Malcolm X Park in Northwest tomorrow.
It also is planning an unpermitted march down
16th Street and a "die-in" on the edge of Lafayette Park at
the end of the presidential parade route.
"Certainly, we would like that the people
have access to the parade route," Miss Landim said.
A group called Turn Your Back on Bush promises
that demonstrators from 49 states and all walks of life will line the
parade route and turn their backs on the presidential limousine as it
Organizers say the event will be peaceful, and
they have urged demonstrators not to respond to hecklers. They say they
expect thousands of people to participate in the demonstration, although
they would not be more specific in their estimate.
"One of the things that makes Turn Your
Back on Bush a unique action is that we won't know who is participating
until the moment it begins," according to the group's Web site at
One complication that the group has posted on
its Web site is that the parade likely will consist of multiple
motorcades with limousines.
"To be safe, turn your back whenever a
motorcade of black limousines and SUVs is in view and continue until
they have passed," the organizers advise participants.
A group called Act Now to Stop War & End
Racism, or ANSWER, was the only protest group granted a permit for a
space with an unobstructed view on the parade route. The protest site is
on the north side of Pennsylvania Avenue NW at Fourth Street, which is
at the start of the parade route.
The group, which plans to construct bleachers
and set up a sound system at a cost of about $30,000, says the site can
accommodate 10,000 people.
"George Bush, as he rides in the inaugural
motorcade, will be forced to pass a large bleacher set up filled with
signs demanding 'U.S. Out of Iraq Now' ... and more," organizers
say on their Web site, www.internationalanswer.org.
A group called Anarchist Resistance has planned
a demonstration on the Inaugural Parade route that they pledge will be
"one of resistance to, not cooperation with, the authorities."
The group's Web site,
www.anarchistresistance.org, tells demonstrators to confront police or
security personnel who try to screen them or stop them.
"We will not submit to illegal arrests,
unlawful searches, or checkpoints," the site says.
The group plans to meet at 12:30 p.m. on the
eastern side of Logan Circle at 13th Street NW between Rhode Island
Avenue and P Street.
Organizers originally planned to meet at
Franklin Square, but the plans were changed when they learned that
Franklin Square will be a police staging point.
|WisPolitics: State Protesters Hope to Make Mark in
By J.S. Decker
His armored car is both bulletproof and soundproof, so President George
W. Bush won't hear the chants of protesters along his inaugural parade
no matter how clever they may be. Whether he'll read the signs or hear
the shouts is not the point, say some of the Wisconsinites who leave
Wednesday to protest the beginning of Bush's second term.
"I am not responsible for the president's actions but I am
responsible for mine, and I want it to be on the record that I am not in
support of this administration. That in itself is a success," said
Ronald Kossik, a bus leader with Lakeshore Peacemakers, a group based in
Their bus will leave Green Bay and make five stops along Lake Michigan
before joining a bus from Milwaukee and another from Madison on the road
to D.C. "This isn't sour grapes, this is just going forward,"
said Tracy Sperko, an organizer with Peace Action Wisconsin, based in
Milwaukee. "I'm expecting we'll have 150 people from
Most, she said, will coordinate with the "Turn Your Back on
Bush" protest. "At the moment that we're notified that the
limo is near we're going to turn our backs," Sperko said, "No
signs, no slogans, nothing. We're the other half of the country that
does not support him and we're not going to go away." That strategy
could bypass the strict limits on protests along the parade route, with
overt protesters corralled into a park at the parade's start.
"If we aren't wearing any offensive slogans, not shouting, how can
they turn us away?" Sperko asks. Just in case, they'll be carrying
small signs that read "Democracy: Access Denied." She said
that's not uncommon, even in Wisconsin. "One time in Mequon some
veterans and I had rocks thrown at us. I've been spit on, I've been
called every name. To go to D.C., where the other people we'll see paid
to see George W. Bush, yes I have some fears."
Tickets for bleachers on Pennsylvania Ave. are selling for $400. There's
22 access points to the parade route, which will be an intensive
security zone rivaled only by the Green Zone in Iraq. The Lakeshore
Peacemakers may not be allowed through 20 of those entries with their
T-shirts that read "No War." Had Bush lost, Kissik would not
have gone. "I wasn't happy with having to choose between two
pro-war choices, but I think Kerry was not as enthusiastic for the war
as President Bush was. I probably would not be going to protest until we
had a chance to see how his policies on Iraq would be."
His group is non-partisan, and both he and Madison organizer Anita Singh
say it's a political mix on their busses. "There had been three
busses (out of Madison)," said Singh, a UW student, "but as of
last week we only sold tickets for half a bus, so we decided to cancel
the other two. But now we've got a waiting list. We had told people to
purchase tickets early. It's really unfortunate." The Madison trip
is sponsored by Stop the War, the Multicultural Student Coalition,
Madison Area Peace Coalition and Veterans for Peace. Speaking dissent
can be as important as yelling support, said Singh, "It can have a
Progressive Dane and Madison Area Peace Coalition will be trying to
ripple more civic involvement by bringing Mayor Dave Cieslewicz and
author John Stauber to an open mic at 6 p.m. at Cafe Montmarte. That's
preceded by a picket and march from the corner of Blair and Williamson
Street at 5 p.m. A funeral procession starts in Milwaukee at the same
time at the corner of Water and Wisconsin. "They'll be wearing
black and will gather to mourn the impact of the Bush agenda on the
needs of people here at home and the people of Iraq," said Peace
Action organizer Julie Enslow. "We plan to do a corner-to-corner
funeral procession," she said. "One coffin represents 100,000
people who have died in Iraq and the other will represent the U.S.
troops who have died in this war. Bush thinks he has this huge mandate
when he barely won the election."
One person who doesn't say how she voted is Molly McGrath, a.k.a. Miss
Wisconsin. She'll be escorted to the swearing-in ceremony and an
official ball by a member of the inaugural committee and will attend
another event with tickets from Representative Obey. "I'll be able
to use it in my presentations on government involvement," she said.
McGrath has championed voting and civic awareness, and she says there's
a place for protests. "It's important to show your opinions and
express yourself, but it's important to remember the time and place and
be courteous about it, because the inauguration is a time to
Groups that dismiss courtesy outright are the anarchists who advocate
revolution and ANSWER, which is preparing to block traffic with a
"die-in." Already 100 blocks of traffic are sealed off, and
another have restricted access. Six thousand law enforcement officers
and 7,000 soldiers will be on hand to thwart attempts at violence, but
protesters are sure to feel their stare as well. Everyone who nears the
parade route will be searched. A similar system was erected at the 2001
inauguration, but blockades were overwhelmed.
Security organizers say that was a warm-up and they're eager to show
what technology and resources can do. The city estimates it's spending
more than $17 million on security and logistics, and the federal
government has yet to release a firm figure.
|Will Pitt Blog
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 12:47
The crowd here is an interesting mix. Abortion and gay rights
defenders are here in strength, but by and large this is an anti-war
crowd. It is also a young crowd, which is heartening.
I got a kick out of the Bush supporters I saw on the way here. A
large portion of southern Red State America is here, and the mild
cold looks to be taking its toll. The snow, too, was a mystery to
them. Good thing this event isn't happening in Boston. Most of them
would not make it out alive if that was the case. Wimps.
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 12:33
ANSWER needs to learn how to give directions. The protest gathering
is actually at 3rd and D. Big, loud crowd waiting to get through the
checkpoint to the parade route protest spot. No soldiers to be seen.
The crowd would be a lot bigger if people had been told the proper
place to go. I saw hundreds of protesters wandering around looking
for the place they'd been told to go. Hopefully the noise will draw
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 12:19
4th and Pennsylvania, the alleged big protest site, is empty except
for some dog-walkers. Annoying. I am now at 7th and D, and there is
a huge crowd of Republicans and protesters bottlenecked at a parade
entrance here. A chant of 'Let us in!' has begun.
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 11:51
I am walking down Pennsylvania Avenue, alongside the parade route.
The crowd is divided into three groups. There are the nattily
dressed white men. There are soldiers, and soldiers, and soldiers.
And then there are the protesters. Wherever there is an entrance to
the parade route, there are people holding signs and American flags,
shouting down the smiling white men in suits.
The helicopters fill the sky. This city is a fortress today.
On the move
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 11:35
Leaving the park and heading to 4th and Pennsylvania, where the
ANSWER rally is taking place along the parade route.
Tough as nails
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 11:21
Granny D is just as tough as nails. In her 90s, she is out here in
the cold and wind to give a speech. She just went back to the van to
get warm. A truly inspirational person.
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 11:11
I was coming back to the park a few minutes ago, and stopped to
check my email on this little machine. I happened to do so standing
next to a police cruiser. I got about ten steps away, and was
stopped by an armored cop who demanded to know what I was doing near
the cruiser. I showed him my press ID, and he growlingly let me
pass. The boys in blue are jumpy today.
In the park again, and the crowd has grown. Granny D is warming in a
nearby van, and will speak sometime soon.
The big fence
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 10:59
Took a walk over to the White House, and found it buried behind a
massive black fence that encompases Lafayette Park and stretches all
the way out to H street. No soldiers are visible, but there are
hundreds of cops everywhere. The White House is barely visible
behind a four story viewing stand.
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 10:54
My mistake. The small crowd here is waiting for two separate columns
of marchers to arrive from different parts of the city. The air is
filled with the sound of sirens.
A sparse turnout
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 10:40
Here in McPherson Park, there are maybe thirty people. A singer
croons at the podium to an empty field of snow. I will wait a while
to see if more show up.
Thursday 20 January 2005 @ 09:29
Coltrane's 'Equinox' is floating through the room here as I prepare
to deal with the cold DC air, the soldiers, the cops, and all the
happy neocons flooding the streets. Why am I reminded of Rome during
the rule of Honorius? Someone check what's lurking behind that
seventh hill, please. I thought I heard something.
Hat. Gloves. Sweater. Scarf. Coffee. Coffee. Coffee. And away we go.
Sound and fury, signifying nothing
Wednesday 19 January 2005 @ 06:48
A few minutes ago, I was staring out the window of the apartment
where I am squatting here in DC, thanks to the kindness of friends.
All of a sudden, the sky above the District erupted in a firestorm
of light and thunder that glittered off the windows of the buildings
and lit the underside of the low-hanging clouds. It was the
fireworks display taking place in front of the White House, marking
the opening of the inauguration festivities. Not long after, the
Marine One helicopter bumbled across the sky like a pot-bellied bee.
The real fireworks will begin tomorrow. The whole display tonight
put me in mind of some lines I once taught to my students, back when
I was an English teacher a million years ago.
Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Winter in Washington
Wednesday 19 January 2005 @ 04:12
It snowed pretty heavily here this afternoon, with more forecast for
tomorrow. It is cold. Not hard cold, not Boston cold - it was four
degrees when I got to Logan airport this morning - but cold enough
to make me wonder if any protests planned for tomorrow will be
understaffed, shall we say, for fear of frostbite. This is a
southern town, after all; one flake hits the ground and everyone
loses their mind.
The events I will be reporting on tomorrow will be taking place at
three different locations. From 9am EST to noon, I will be covering
the protests at McPherson Park, the closest venue available to the
White House. At noon, the show moves to Senate Park, close to the
Capitol Building and right near Union Station. Starting at 7pm EST,
there will be a CounterInaugural Ball at a club called Dream,
location as yet unknown. I will also be reporting throughout on the
security situation, the troops in the street, the sights and sounds,
and whever else seems worthy of note.
Keep an eye on this page starting around 9am EST tomorrow. You won't
want to miss the show.
Leaving for D.C.
Wednesday 19 January 2005 @ 05:41
I am leaving this morning for Washington DC to blog the inauguration
on Thursday, so updates on this page will likely be few and far
between until later this afternoon. Tomorrow, of course, will be a
whole different story. What I see and hear on the DC streets during
the big show, I will report here throughout the day.
It should be interesting, to say the least.
|Thursday, January 20th, 2005
Lockdown in DC: Unprecedented Security For
Bush Inauguration and Protests
Washington DC is in a state of lockdown for the most heavily
guarded presidential inauguration in history. Along with the
customary inauguration address and parade, a number of protests
are being planned in Washington and around the country. We speak
with Shahid Buttar, a member of the Guerilla Poetry Insurgency
affinity group for the anti-inauguration protests and Mark
Goldstone, of the Demonstration Support Committee for the
National Lawyers Guild.
Washington DC is in a state of lockdown amid unprecedented
levels of security. Fences, barriers and roadblocks have been
erected across the city and 7,000 law enforcement agents from
more than 100 federal, state and local agencies are on patrol.
Heavily armed Coast Guard boats will patrol the Potomac River.
Snipers have taken up positions on rooftops, bomb-sniffing dogs
are on patrol and so-called Patriot anti-missile batteries are
stationed near the Capitol.
The entire area around Capitol Hill and the White House has
been cordoned off, and more than 100 streets will be off-limits
to traffic with the inauguration designated a national
Flight restrictions over Washington for private aircraft have
been expanded, and pilots are being warned that they risk being
shot down if they stray into restricted areas and don't respond
The so-called nerve center for the most heavily guarded
presidential inauguration in history is in a futuristic command
post in Northern Virginia. Inside a gleaming steel-and-marble
complex, the Secret Service and 50 federal, state and local
agencies will monitor action in the sky, on the ground and in
the subway system. Giant plasma screens will beam in live video
from helicopters and cameras at the U.S. Capitol, along the
parade route and at other areas. Officials will be able to track
fighter jets patrolling the skies and call up three-dimensional
maps of downtown.
Washington officials are upset that the federal government
has told them to use homeland security grants to pay costs
associated with the inauguration. Mayor Anthony Williams
estimated the inauguration would cost the city over $17 million.
More than half a million people are expected to attend the
ceremony today and along with the customary inauguration address
and parade, a number of protests are being planned in Washington
and around the country.
Along the parade route, thousands of people will "Turn
Their Backs on Bush." An anti-war march through Malcolm X
park will conclude with a "die-in."
Military families and veterans will speak out at an
"Eyes Wide Open" exhibit. The exhibit includes a pair
of boots honoring each U.S. military casualty in the Iraq war
and a wall of remembrance to memorialize the Iraqis killed.
A "Black Gold and Boots" event will be held outside
the official "Black Tie and Boots" inaugural ball and
a "Got Freedom?" Ball, outside the official Freedom
Ball. Across the country, a campaign called "Not One Damn
Dime" is calling for a 24-hour national boycott of all
forms of consumer spending.
More than 100 counter-inaugural events are planned in
communities throughout the country - from Omaha to Fresno to
Atlanta to New York City. They range from picnics against the
president to funerals for the American Dream to drumming circles
- Mark Goldstone, chair of the Demonstration Support
Committee of the Washington DC chapter of the National
- Shahid Buttar, a Washington DC-based lawyer and a
member of the Guerilla Poetry Insurgency affinity group for
the anti-inauguration protests. He also is a member of the
Resistance Media Collective in DC.
To purchase an audio or video copy of this entire program, click
here for our new online ordering or call 1 (800) 881-2359.
Bay Area progressives will stage a buffet of counter-inaugural
events today, from book parties and poetry readings to demonstrations.
The largest is expected to be a 5 p.m. rally at Civic Center in San
Francisco, organized primarily by International ANSWER. Nearly two
dozen speakers will take on the Bush administration on everything from
the Iraq war to its plans for partial privatization of Social
Security, after which demonstrators will march down Market Street to
"We feel that it's imperative to show how deep and wide the
opposition is to this ridiculous inauguration," said
International ANSWER organizer Marina Drummer, referring to President
Bush's backers staging a $40 million celebration while the nation is
"And, of course, we also want to bring the troops home
now," Drummer said. Organizers are urging sympathizers to wear a
white ribbon of mourning for those who have died in the Iraq war.
Bay Area protests will begin at 7 a.m. with banners unfurling from
highway overpasses and prominent buildings declaring, "Not Our
President," a brainchild of Not in Our Name, a national anti-war
organization with an office in Oakland.
At 9 a.m., timed to coincide when Bush is taking the oath of
office, members of Artists and Writers for Peace will read the
Langston Hughes poem "Let America Be America Again," at the
BART station plaza in downtown Berkeley. And then they'll read it
again. And again, until, as organizers say, "anyone who wants to
join in will have a chance to come to the microphone -- the reading
will continue until everyone has had a turn or the light has
At 10:30 a.m., Not in Our Name Sonoma County will be protesting
outside the Federal Building in San Francisco, conducting a mock
At 11:30 a.m., in San Francisco's Four Seasons Hotel, the liberal
organization People for the American Way will host a counter-inaugural
event honoring four Californians for their contributions to activism.
The honorees are Joan Blades and Wes Boyd, who started MoveOn.org,
the online hub that raised millions for progressive-based causes in
the last election; U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson, who
temporarily blocked Proposition 209, the 1996 California initiative
banning race and sex preferences in state and local affirmative
action; and Robert Klein, mastermind of California's stem cell
From 5 to 6:30 p.m. in Lytton Plaza in Palo Alto, the Peninsula
Peace and Justice Center will protest the administration's domestic
and foreign policies.
At 7:30 p.m. at the Make-Out Room in San Francisco's Mission
District, there will be counter-inaugural party to promote a
just-released collection of post-election essays, "What Do We Do
At 10 p.m. in the Potrero Hill Neighborhood House, 953 DeHaro St.
in San Francisco, the Progress Party -- a group of San Francisco
progressives hoping to promote left-of-center energy forged during the
election -- will toast to future successes with the help of several
bands. An e-mail advertising the party says, "Bitterness is passé
and moving forward is the way to go. And we might as well have some
fun with it."
While President Bush's supporters celebrate his inauguration today,
many protesters across California plan to hit the streets to rally
against the returning administration.
Speeches and rallies are planned in San Francisco, Los Angeles and other
cities. In Santa Cruz, former Democratic presidential nominee George
McGovern is the keynote speaker at a planned demonstration there.
A Palo Alto woman says she plans to display huge panels of
photographs of soldiers killed in Iraq. Carol Brouillet says she
believes Bush used the September 11 terror attacks as a pretext for an
In Los Angeles, a protest is planned this evening outside the Federal
Building near the U-C-L-A campus.
Copyright 2005 Associated Press.
An anti-Bush protester displays a sign on
January 20, 2005 near the presidential inaugural parade route
leading from the Capitol building to the White House in Washington
DC. Protesters converged on the US capital seeking to persuade
President George W Bush that "51 per cent is not a
mandate," as he basked in the glow of his Inauguration Day
festivities after winning a second four-year term in November
election. Bush secured 62 million votes, or nearly 51 per cent of
the ballots, in the 2004 presidential race, while his challenger,
Democratic Senator John Kerry, garnered some 59 million votes (48
per cent). Protesters were of every age and background: families,
children, students, retirees, artists, and accountants. Many were
anti-war protesters but some had economic complaints or joined the
demonstrations to support gay marriage rights or environmental
|SAN FRANCISCO PROTEST
||Sarah Clark holds a sign with a mask of
President George W Bush during a protest denouncing Bush's
inauguration on January 20, 2005 in San Francisco.
||A protester bows his head on a mock coffin
draped in an American Flag during a counter-inaugural march on
January 20, 2005 in Washington. US President George W Bush was
sworn in for his second term in ceremonies earlier 20 January at
the US Capitol.
||Steve Frasier (R), of Centerville, Virginia,
debates politics with an unidentified man along the Inaugural
Parade route on January 20, 2005 in Washington, DC. Though the
demonstrations were peaceful, mainly booing of Bush's motorcade
and marches and rallies, about 50 anarchists tried in one incident
to push past security checkpoints and advance toward the parade
route, but were pushed back by police.
||Demonstrators hold posters and chant slogans
against US President George W Bush on January 20, 2005 in
Washington, DC, after Bush took the oath of office for a second
four-year term. Though the demonstrations were peaceful, mainly
booing of Bush's motorcade and marches and rallies, about 50
anarchists tried in one incident to push past security checkpoints
and advance toward the parade route, but were pushed back by
anti-Bush protests as president is inauguarated
As President Bush was sworn in for a second term, protesters around
the country marched, carried banners and chanted the names of the war
A few miles away from the Capitol, about 500 marchers rallied in a park.
Some carried boxes meant to symbolize the coffins of dead soldiers.
In San Francisco, the sign draped in front of City Hall read "To
Party Big While Our Troops Die is Obscene."
Protesters in New Orleans planned what they call a jazz funeral for
democracy, with copies of the Constitution and the U-S-A Patriot Act
carried in a horse-drawn mock coffin.
A protester at an Akron, Ohio courthouse said, "War is not the
way to come to peace." About 20 people demonstrated there.
Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved
Local anti Bush protests
BOWLING GREEN, KY
Bearing placards criticizing the current administration's actions both
domestic and abroad, Bowling Green citizens gathered at City Park to
march in opposition to Thursday's Inaugural proceedings.
By Josh Comer
January 21, 2005
Braving freezing temperatures to make their feelings known, more than
a dozen protesters made their way down Main Street. Mere hours after
President Bush was sworn in to his second term, Jodi Wyant related her
concerns regarding the current administration.. "He should be
impeached," said Wyant. "I don't know if he made a law saying
that he's not allowed to be impeached, but he lied, badly."
The war on terror was a clear point of contention among the
protesters. Signs pleading for the President to be tried on charges of
war crimes were displayed.
"He killed thousands of people because of his lies," said
Single-issue voters were blamed for reelecting the President without
fully weighing the consequences. Wyant addressed the contradictions she
felt were present in the moral majority's pro-Bush argument.
"They voted for Bush because he's against abortion," Wyant
said. "How can he say it's okay to kill people in other countries
but not here?"
Another war, the war on drugs, was also of great concern to the
demonstrators. Lia Ricci spoke avidly of the harm which this conflict
has inflicted in the United States.
"We're throwing people in jail for nonviolent drug crimes,"
Ricci said. "We're ruining families and killing people because we
won't give them a syringe that costs a half of a cent to make, and then
we have no health insurance for them, either."
"If they really want a global economy, a united world, we have to
treat people the same in every country," said Wyant.
Bush protests draw thousands in NW
By Associated Press
Jan 21, 2005 - 07:50:15 am PST
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- At least 2,000 activists marched through
downtown Portland on Thursday -- the day of President Bush's
inauguration -- to protest the Iraq war and the administration's
economic and social policies.
Police detained at least one protester.
Clusters of Bush supporters got into shouting matches with protesters
as they marched by.
When a middle-age protester of Bush was confronted by Bush supporters,
he shook the American flag he was carrying in their face.
"I've got mine, where's yours?" he yelled at the Bush
There were some tense moments as a group of marchers splintered off
from the main body. Riot police jumped out of a truck, formed a wall
and told the group to join the main party.
One protester set fire to an American flag in front of the federal
Protesters ranged in age from high schoolers to elderly Oregonians.
Among the latter was Billy Ray Jones, 75, a retired public school
administrator who lives in The Dalles.
Jones, who held a sign reading "Facism has come to America,"
said the Bush administration has cracked down on civil liberties and
he is worried about the level of fear nationally.
"I'm concerned that our government is beginning to look a little
like the government of Benito Mussolini," Jones said.
Small protests were held throughout the day in Portland, including a
march across a downtown bridge by about 100 people, many of them
middle-age women with the activist group "Code Pink." They
chanted "not our president, not our war."
"I personally don't acknowledge George Bush as my
president," said Rabia Yeaman, the chief organizer, dressed all
in pink. "We felt we needed some kind of cathartic event to be
able to have some closure on these last horrible four years."
They and other activists met at a rallying site, and then marched
together through downtown.
Police at the scene said at least 2,000 people took part in the march,
and there may have been as many as 5,000.
The protesters included high school students who had gotten permission
to miss class to take part in the demonstration.
Among them was Mike Schaefer, 17, a senior who said one reason he
participated in the protest was that he was too young to vote in the
last election and he wanted to make his voice heard.
"I couldn't vote, but my mom voted for Bush," he said.
Another high school student, 17-year-old Colleen Kenny, said:
"I'm mostly really concerned about pro-choice issues and gay
Jesse Hannon, 19, said he was protesting the war in Iraq and the Bush
administration's economic policies: "The economy is in the
The Portland protests were part of demonstrations held in scattered
places across the county to coincide with Bush's inauguration.
Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved
Protests as Bush vows to end tyranny
ANOTHER shouts his protest - Protestor hit with baton
GEORGE Bush made a
resounding call for worldwide freedom but did not mention Iraq
once in his second inaugural Presidential speech.
As he was sworn in for a second
four-year term in Washington, Mr Bush warned that for as long as
whole regions of the world simmered in tyranny, violence would
gather and raise a mortal threat.
But in the first wartime
inauguration for more than 30 years, he did not specifically
mention the war that has cost the US £80billion and killed at
least 1300 American people.
As the ceremony took place, there
were many protests, mostly about the war in Iraq.
When the President's motorcade
made its way down Pennsylvania Avenue from the Capitol to the
White House amid the tightest security in inaugural history, some
protesters turned their back as Mr Bush's car drove slowly past.
Others yelled, "George Bush,
you can't hide. We charge you with genocide."
One group carried hundreds of mock
coffins, while an American flag was also set alight.
In one area, police used pepper
spray and batons on demonstrators who hurled bottles at officers
while trying to break through a security fence holding them back
from the parade. Police said there were 13 arrests.
In his 2000-word speech, Mr Bush -
who has the lowest approval rating of a second term President for
more than 50 years - acknowledged the war in Iraq had caused
splits in America.
However, he called on people to
heal divisions and move on.
Mr Bush also spoke of his hopes of
bringing "freedom" to other countries.
He said: "There is only one
force of history that can break the reign of history and
resentment ... and that is the force of human freedom.
"The best hope for freedom in
our world is the expansion of freedom in all the world. We do not
accept the existence of permanent tyranny because we do not accept
the possibility of permanent slavery."
Then, in a reference to Iraq, he
said: "Because we have acted in the great liberating
tradition of this nation, tens of millions have achieved their
freedom. And as hope kindles hope,
millions more will find it.
"The survival of liberty in
our land increasingly depends on the success of liberty in other
He used the word
"freedom" 27 times and tried to define his second term
as a fight with the "ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our
However, in a less combative tone,
Mr Bush said that spreading freedom did not necessarily mean
| Large, Often Raucous
Protests Greet Bush at Second Inaugural
January 21, 2005
|by Brendan Coyne and
correspondents capture the spirit of a day full of
“counter-inaugural” events, including large marches, clashes with
police and colorful interactions between the president’s supporters
, Jan. 21 - They
came to express outrage at President George W. Bush and his administration
and, with few exceptions, protesters attending the counter-inaugural
yesterday said they were happy with the turnout, including the number and
variety of demonstrations.
morning onward, demonstrators encountered the same dilemma as journalists
trying to cover them: the schedule was jam-packed with competing events.
Some expressed wishes that organizers from the numerous groups hosting or
leading actions and other affairs had better coordinating their efforts.
Still, participants were happy to blow off steam and have what little say
in the event that they were allowed by a massive security force and the
media focused almost exclusively on the main spectacles: a colorful
parade, the official swearing in and numerous gala happenings attended by
the rich and famous.
Meanwhile, attendance at protests and other "counter-inaugural"
events topped most participants' expectations, with impromptu marches
occurring throughout the day and continuing well into the evening.
One of the largest events was a permitted rally and march hosted by the DC
Anti-War Network (DAWN) and supported by Code Pink, Mobilization for
Global Justice, and several other anti-war groups. At around 9 a.m. people
began assembling at Meridian Hill Park in Northwest DC -- renamed Malcolm
X Park by locals -- to hear speeches, put together hundreds of cardboard
coffins, wander about chatting with like-minded people or hawking buttons
and other anti-Bush and anti-war merchandise. By ten, the number of rally
attendees had at least tripled, with one DAWN organizer estimating the
crowd at over 3,000.
While the "1,000 Coffins" contingent went about covering each
with black cloth or an American flag, a crew of about 50 people dressed in
black with their faces mostly obscured gathered nearby around an orange
banner reading "No More Presidents" as they eyed District police
cars parked on the grass. Requests for comment on what they planned were
met with "no thanks" from one member of the group, who seemed
generally disinterested in talking to the media.
working on the coffins were more open to press queries. Michael Berg of
resident Jim Preston both spoke about the importance of protesting the
president's second inauguration.
"I'm here to voice my opposition to this administration's policy of
war, occupation and destruction," said Berg, the director of the
. "Pretty much everything this president does and stands for, I'm
Berg rode a train into DC specifically to attend protests and said he
would have been disappointed in himself had he not attended.
's take, if not the commute from his home in a DC suburb, was similar.
"I want to voice my opposition to the Bush agenda," he said as
he folded the sides of a cardboard coffin effigy. "I think these
coffins are a meaningful component to the protest march. We're actually
talking about people dying. I'm sure
CNN and Fox and the other networks are kind of laughing at us, but just
because Bush won the election doesn't mean he's right. You don't get to
vote on the truth."
The park was filled with a variety of people. There were signs protesting
war, the president and the election. There were others showing support for
gay rights, abortion rights and the populations of other nations,
especially Iraqis. A handful of people wandered about with orange flags as
a reminder of what a determined populace recently accomplished in the
One of the larger demographic groups represented was that of college
students. Some drove with friends, others came with student associations
or other campus groups, and one -- a group 200 strong -- came on four
busses rented by the university they attend.
"We just hate Bush more than anything in the world," explained
student. "I think this rally is pretty good and I can't wait to see
the coffins carried down the street. Most of all, it's great to see people
in my age group doing something."
Lisa said the university sponsored the trip. And though it was to be a
bi-partisan journey, she said only a few Bush supporters chose to take the
twelve-hour ride. They arrived at five in the morning and would be leaving
at five that evening.
While many of the protesters were not tied to one specific issue, a group
of four local African American teens, who said they had never attended a
protest before, showed up to express concern about the president's plan to
partially privatize Social Security.
"I think his [Social Security] plan is the same as robbery,"
said Scott. "By the time I'm old enough to retire, there won't be
anything for me." His friend Josh agreed, adding "it's really
hard to find out the facts."
said he liked the feeling of unity at the park and thinks it is a good
thing he and his friends came to check out the protest.
Meanwhile, organizers of "The Cost of War: the Price We're All
Paying" forum at the
said they were overwhelmed by the turnout. According to Debbie Churchman
for Peace, only a handful of people were expected. Instead, several extra
chairs had to be brought into the second floor room as well over 200
people came to hear speakers talk about the effects of war in economic and
personal terms. Among the speakers were Celeste Zappala and Sue Neiderer,
both mothers who have lost sons in the
war and members of Military Families Speak Out.
As the panel discussion wound down, the march toward the inaugural parade
route began, heading down
from the park. Several smaller "feeder marches" joined in along
surprised at how large this is," said
resident Sean Healy. "I've never personally been involved in anything
His comment was echoed by Caroline Guier, a fellow Bostonian who drove
down with Healy the night before. "It's so cool that so many people
took the time to come out and have a say," added Guier.
Others involved appeared a bit concerned that the march was too
disorganized, with gaps of fifty or more feet appearing at times
throughout the trek to
. Edward H., an Indiana resident who declined to offer his last name or
the city he lived in for fear of being disciplined for calling in sick to
work, said it looked like there was not much communication between the
"When I was in
for the Republican [National] Convention [in August/September 2004], the
march was better ordered," he said. "But, I guess it doesn't
really matter. I mean, look behind us; there are a lot of different people
and a lot of different ideas here. That's got to be a good thing."
As the main march turned toward
, a much smaller group broke off and headed toward H and 15th Streets.
There, seventeen members of DAWN held a pre-planned "die-in,"
covering parts of their clothes, faces and hands with fake blood and lying
in the intersection. A circle of protesters and picture-takers formed
while curious onlookers walking by stopped to see and walked on. Fifteen
minutes after the action, District police had yet to move in and make
, speakers orated from a stage and various groups gathered together with
banners, signs and other paraphernalia.
With speakers recounting what they term the crimes of the Bush
administration from the stage, several smaller groups wandered away from
the park, some followed by police cruisers or bicycle cops, others
apparently left unhindered.
anarchists, socialist, all kinds of people," a woman going by the
name "Blood Red" said of the two to three hundred people
gathered on the corner of 7th and H streets, right at the entrance to
neighborhood. "Everybody over here wants liberation. It's not just
about Bush, it's about the whole system."
According to Blood Red, whose scarf covered most of her face, police had
routed the group of demonstrators from
's Circle and the scattered protesters were regrouping closer to the
She declined to say they planned or what she wanted to see happen from
further demonstrations that day, but at 2:30, as police in riot gear
appeared on the opposite corner, the group took off on an unruly,
unpermitted march toward a line of police standing behind portable metal
fences. The first several rows had their arms linked, and a male in black
with a red bandanna over his face remarked, "We're going as far as we
can," when queried about the group's plan.
That turned out to be not too far. Police began closing in from the
group's side and back, forcing the 250 or so protesters to turn right onto
, parallel to the parade but several blocks and some rather large fences
away. With police in slow pursuit, several in the group employed wooden
pallets and overturned orange construction barrels as barricades while one
young protester ran along the side of the street spray-painting red swaths
on several cars and sports utility vehicles. At one point they received an
approving honk from
native Neil Love, a tractor-trailer driver.
"Hell no," Love said when asked if he approved of the president.
"I'd wished he wouldn't have drove up the fuel prices.
Good for these guys. I'm glad they're raising hell."
Tony Cocco, an
bicycle messenger who was in town for a bike race and decided to stick
around for the protests said he was unsure how he felt about the
near-violent outbursts from marchers and police alike.
"I hate Bush as much as anyone," he said. "But I wasn't
really part of this. I'm more of an opportunist -- I saw the march and
joined. Now I'm not so sure it was a good idea."
Castania and Peter Debes both said they were generally happy with the
day's events. Additionally, Castania said it was important for people to
be in the streets protesting consistently. Both said they have attended
demonstrations regularly since Bush took office, and they hope the
anti-war movement grows as strong as it became during the
invasion and bombing of
"It feels like we need to be doing things like this," Castania
said. "It keeps the momentum up. We need to create chaos in the
streets, just like we did during the Vietnam War."
Ron Immanuel of
had a chance to see Bush's speech for himself and was unimpressed.
"It was scary, he used the word 'freedom' about 100 times,"
Immanuel exaggerated. "It was that and the same old crap and sound
bites. The guy still can't put together a sentence that actually says
Along the Inaugural parade route, thousands of demonstrators mixed with
Bush supporters, wielding protest signs and chanting at the passing
festivities. Lines to enter the parade snaked entire city blocks in the
city's northwest quadrant, demonstrators standing cheek in jowl with Bush
supporters as all vied for a fleeting opportunity to get their message out
"I spent between a half an hour and 45 minutes at each checkpoint,
said We went through 3 and then got caught behind a fence," said
Andrea Smith, an intake coordinator and investigator at Legal Aide Society
of DC. "At times I thought about turning around but once we were
there and Bush went by it felt good to be there, with him, booing directly
resident, Smith left the Inauguration glad that city residents had come
out together, even if most of that together time happened in line.
"It's been weird the past few days to see Bush supporters come in.
You see them wearing fur coats and tuxedos on the metro, clearly outsiders
here to support a President who the city largely disapproves of… even
the cops were imported for the day," she said.
A full 91 percent of
residents voted against George W. Bush in 2004.
Cops were not the only imports who made it to
for the day. Mike Potter came to the Inauguration from
with a sign reading, "Bush is to Christianity what Bin Laden is to
Islam." Potter, a Christian and father of two, said he attended
church regularly before the
September 11, 2001
terrorist attacks, but now he feels uncomfortable there.
"I was brought up a Christian and I believed it right up until the
point when I saw it become a vehicle of war," he said.
"The Right has created a religious war since 9/11 and I am
flabbergasted that we are a nation of sheep following it."
While the Inauguration and its attendant street barricades shut down the
vast majority of governmental offices, many federal employees weathered
the traffic and made it downtown for the day's actions.
Thursday morning, Betsey Menshew left her
home at around the same time that she usually leaves for her job as a
nurse with Department of Defense -- today in order to spend her day off
protesting the chief executive.
important for those of us who didn't vote for Bush to show here and let
people know that he did not have our mandate," Menshaw said. "To
see people protesting here reaffirms my belief in democracy."
Following the appearance of Bush's motorcade, demonstrators lit two
American flags on fire and incited a noxious hose-down of chemicals as
city police emptied canister upon canister of pepper spray and Bush
supporters rained ice down on them from a neighboring balcony.
"I didn't vote for Bush but I came here to see the parade and the
protest is making it a hassle," said Brianna Berlin, a high school
senior on a school field trip from
. "We saw a monument here. I wish I could see the inauguration
Legal observers clad in bright green hats labeled with the emblem of the
National Lawyers Guild threaded the day's wool-coated crowds. They stood
on hand all day at the checkpoints where police were searching people and
barring the entrance of all bags over a certain size.
"My understanding of the checkpoints is that they are for security,
but it's up to public debate to decide how reasonably or unreasonably they
are being managed," said Bill Repsher, a retired lawyer from
who was trained by the Guild earlier this week.
On a number of occasions, police brutally attacked demonstrators with
pepper spray and batons, as described by several witnesses at various
scenes around the parade route and depicted in wire service photos.
Later in the day, protesters gathered near Union Station, DC's major
junction between Metro and Amtrack rails, to crash an inaugural party. The
counter-party, dubbed the "Got Freedom? Inaugural Ball,"
organized by CodePink: Women for Peace, The Ohio League of Pissed Off
Voters and a group known as The Ronald Reagan Home for the Criminally
Insane, eventually overwhelmed police, who gave up trying to corral the
demonstrators onto a sidewalk area across from the event.
A dancing troupe of five people dressed in sweatshirts reading
"Torture U" and wearing masks depicting Defense Secretary Donald
Rumsfeld, President Bush, Secretary of State nominee Condolezza Rice,
arch-conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh and Attorney General pick
Alberto Gonzales all partook in the festivities as Jeff Grubler of The
Ronald Reagan Home for the Criminally Insane led chants and spoke out
against torture at the US-run Abu Ghraib Prison in Iraq.
Those attending the sanctioned event were forced to enter through throngs
of protesters jeering and taunting them along the way. But not all the
protesters thought the verbal abuse was a good idea.
"I wish they'd say something constructive," said Jeannie Milner,
resident. "We look as bad as them if all we do is swear and yell.
Maybe someone should try and actually talk to them."
Grubler apparently agreed. After the behavior had gone on for a while he
took the microphone and pleaded with the crowd to ask intelligent
questions of the gala-goers, not just castigate them. The appeals largely
fell on apparently deaf ears.
"Go to hell," a shaven-headed man told a NewStandard
reporter for inquiring how effective he thought accosting the attendees
was. The man declined to give his name.
Police told Reuters that they arrested at least thirteen demonstrators.
According to Rae Abileah of CodePink, the group's co-founders, Medea
Benjamin and Diane Wilson were among those arrested. Police apprehended
them at the inauguration after seven members of the organization managed
to obtain tickets for the event, unfurl banners and interrupt proceedings.
© 2004 The
A band portraying President Bush as a
marionette controlled by Satan performs at a protest against the inauguration of
President Bush and the war in Iraq Thursday, Jan. 20, 2005, in downtown
(AP Photo Ted S. Warren)
JENNA THINKS THIS IS A 'GOOD' THING!
U.S. President George W. Bush (R) and his daughters
Jenna (L) and Barbara (C) sing along at the Black Tie and Boots Inaugural Ball
in Washington, DC January 19, 2005. The event is part of celebrations leading up
to the second inauguration of President Bush for his second term January
DAD DOESN'T WATCH HIS DAUGHTER!
LOOKS LIKE LAURA THINKS THIS IS A GOOD THING TOO!
U..S. President George W. Bush and his wife Laura gesture to
audience at Commander In Chief's Ball honoring the inauguration of the president
in Washington, January 20, 2005. The ball is being held for all members of the
United States armed forces and is the last of many stops the President and his
wife will make throughout the night. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton
LAURA AND GEORGE MADE THE TEXAS LONGHORN SIGN TO THE TEXAS
BAND DURING THE PARADE ALSO
A protester sits hooked to a gasoline pump with a bicycle lock as
police prepare to arrest her during an inaugural protest in Portland, Ore.,
Thursday, Jan. 20, 2005. At least 2,000 activists marched through downtown
Portland, to protest President Bush 's inauguration, the Iraq war and the
administration's economic and social policies. (AP Photo/Don Ryan )
Police arrest a protester during the Inauguration of
U.S. President George W. Bush in Washington, D.C. January 20, 2005. The
arrest caused several small fights to break out between the police and the protesters
along 13th street in Washington. REUTERS/Scott A. Miller
A protester burns a United States flag as the Bush
inaugural parade passes by on Pennsylvania Avenue, several blocks from the White
House in Washington, January 20, 2005. Anti-war chants competed with pomp and
circumstance as the inauguration of President George W. Bush for a second
term took place amid the barricaded streets of central Washington. REUTERS/Jim
Police officers fire streams of pepper spray into a crowd of protesters
after demonstrators threw objects over the fence, as the President Bush
inaugural parade passes by on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, January 20,
2005. Anti-war chants competed with pomp and circumstance during the
inauguration of Bush for a second term as president took place amid the
barricaded streets of central Washington. Photo by Jim Bourg/Reuters
Protest Links for Inauguration Day
in Washington, D.C.
CounterCoup.org supports the massive
protests in Washington, D.C. for the Inauguration on January 20, 2001.
As a service, we are providing a list of links to help you get involved
in this historical event.
Washington, D.C. protests:
Justice Action Movement's InaugurAuction.org website
Another great info site.
International Action Center website
Large national group. They've been planning for months. To be joined by
National Organization for Women website
NOW Inauguration Protest press
release. Powerful organization.
Other groups in D.C. on J20
Florida Freedom Ride to DC! Well organized group. CounterCoup.org
Z Magazine's "Call
to Demonstrate" Featuring highly distinguished signatories.
Independent Progressive Politics Network website
National Pro-Democracy Week protest
info. Events from Jan. 15 (MLK Day) through Jan. 20 (Inauguration
Jesse Jackson's Inauguration Protest press
release. Similar to above, but with greater outreach.
Angeles J20 Rally and March
This is where you should be if you are on the other coast!
Send your supporting organization's link here
updated - 9-14-04 - ANTI-BUSH
NEW WEAPON - SOUND CANNON - AIMED AT PROTESTERS
REPUBLICAN CONVENTION - 2004
7-27-04 - THE
PHOTOS AND NEWS YOU WON'T SEE ON TV
RAZOR WIRES AND FENCES
updated 10-5-04 - THE
DEATH OF THE PRESIDENT
... An eloquent and energetic chieftain, Tecumseh, with his religious
brother, the Prophet, pronounced a curse on all Presidents elected in a
year ending with a 0
THE TIME MAY BE SOON!
REPO-MAN - PRESIDENT CLINTON
MOORE'S ACTION GUIDE
THE NEW EARTHCHANGES POLITICAL FORUM
WE ARE GOING TO CHANGE THE WAY POLITICS IS GOING!!!
OF THE GREAT EARTHCHANGES - MAIN INDEX