I woke up this morning about ten seconds before the downpour started, a rain that has lasted about an hour an a half and socked in the basin with so many clouds the mountains are mere afterthoughts on the horizon. It's a cool, wonderfully gloomy morning that feels like winter more than the dregs of summer--what passes for fall here--it really is.
The rally last night was rather disjointed and was on the move by the time I got down there, the anti-Bush faction marching in clumps to take the long way around the pro-war group on the opposite sidewalk. My first impression was that our side needs to bulk up in the flag department. The fact that I could instantly identify which group was the pro-war side, based on the large number of flags they were carrying, should give us all pause. Failing to carry flags ourselves reinforces the pro-war people's message that they are the true Americans, that their message is the one the flag truly stands for. We can't help them perpetuate that.
Anti-Bush signs seen: "Impeach;" "Give Bush a Fair Trial;" good old "ITMFA." One boy stood crucifix-style, a noose wound along his arms.
Pro-war signs seen: "Give War a Chance;" "Nuke Iran, Nuke Syria, Let God Sort 'em Out;" and my perennial favorite, "Osama Loves Lefties." I truly wanted to engage the latter woman in conversation. I wanted to point out to her that of all Americans, Osama probably finds "lefties" the most repugnant. After all, we tend away from orthodox religion, we don't usually adhere to religious prohibitions against things like rock music and sex for fun, and, ah, we're the ones who seem to think Osama needs to be caught right now rather than ignored and trotted out as a convenient boogeyman when the polls dip.
As I drove away, I saw an older guy holding a Marine flag engaged in a heated conversation with a young kid, punctuating his points by thwacking the kid's shins with his flagpole. I wonder why turning the other cheek comes so naturally to us, when it's the other side that's so thick with Bible thumpers.