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Just Imagine The Rose Parade Occupied For The People

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Ever since I learned "Just Imagine" was the chosen theme for this year's Tournament of Roses Parade, I kept thinking about John Lennon. For so many of us, millions, perhaps even billions worldwide, the word "imagine" evokes an instant image of the pop-culture icon. His face, his round specs and his musical masterpiece permeate our minds. The melody and lyrics are transformational:

Imagine there's no heaven It's easy if you try No hell below us Above us only sky Imagine all the people living for today

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace

You, you may say 
I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one
I hope some day you'll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people sharing all the world

You, you may say 
I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one
I hope some day you'll join us
And the world will live as one

But for some, these lyrics seem meaningless, even absurd. Perhaps because the very same vagaries the lyrics decry are inherent to their personas. Perhaps they're consumed by greed or owned by possessions. Perhaps they subjugate through religion or can't bear to share. Perhaps they choose division over unity or war over peace.

That's them.

Not me. For me and others like me, John Lennon's Imagine imagines our world.

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This year, the Just Imagine themed 123rd Rose Parade takes place on Monday, January 2nd to honor an obscure 1893 tradition. Also this year, in what defines another Rose Parade tradition, in addition to the standard fare of high school and university bands, prancing horses, law enforcement groups, local government and civic organizations, the Just Imagine Rose Parade will be satiated with the ubiquitous (and seemingly mandatory) military and corporations.

The Parade's Grand Marshal is Iraq war vet, actor and Dancing With the Stars champ JR Martinez. The Air Force's B-2 Spirit will perform its ceremonial flyover and the Marine Corps band will entertain.

The corporations, ranging from major banks (Wells Fargo, US Bank), credit card (Discover), food (Dole), insurance (Farmers), airline (China), drug (Bayer), auto (Honda) and more, will be well represented by more than a dozen lavishly decorated floats.

Undeniably, military might and corporate cachet will be front and center in the Just Imagine Rose Parade.

But don't despair you lovers of John Lennon. The spirit of your Imagine will not be forsaken. Immediately following the might & money march comes the occupiers' march - the people's march - replete with their own mighty float, Occupus, the greedy corporate octopus whose tentacles pierce homes, workplaces and pockets to terrorize victims.

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Occupus rehearsal from video by Owen Driggs
Taken from video by Owen Driggs

They come bearing the People's Constitution which grants We The People our rights.

Photo by Linda Milazzo

And they come with the Supreme Court's most recent perversion of the Constitution that grants "We The Corporations" We The People's rights.

Photo by Linda Milazzo
Photo by Linda Milazzo: Clifford Tasner of The Billionaires

On January 2nd, thanks to the hard work and determination of members of the Occupy Movement, in particular organizer Peter Thottam, the 123rd Rose Parade is permitting viewers to Just Imagine how spectacular our country could be if greed and war disappeared. Lets re-Imagine the missions of the Parade's "main stage" performers:

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Linda Milazzo was a Managing Editor of Opednews until Fall 2014, and a Los Angeles based writer, educator and activist. Since 1974, she has divided her time between the entertainment industry, government organizations, community development (more...)

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Yes! Lennon's invitation to im... by Meryl Ann Butler on Sunday, Jan 1, 2012 at 8:38:13 AM
love the pics and the way you characterize the mai... by Rob Kall on Sunday, Jan 1, 2012 at 2:02:26 PM
who will still feel pride in the military, even th... by Anuel Jackson on Sunday, Jan 1, 2012 at 9:44:08 PM
I lived in Pasadena for 8 years, 1/2 block off Col... by Richard Scott on Monday, Jan 2, 2012 at 12:27:38 PM