My compatriots and I stand resolutely on that street corner in Port Orange, Florida each and every Tuesday at rush hour. We hold our signs to protest this President and his dastardly crew of chicken hawk liars and deceivers. The cars flow past us, and more and more, we get honks of support and thumbs up by our neighbors. Yet, hardly anyone stops to join us. Do they really think that we are out there to represent them? Do they really think that many of us do not have jobs, or families to take care of? My friend Rita, 70 something, is not well. She has a lung condition, yet stands with me each and every Tuesday. Sometimes the dust gets to her, and I sadly watch her gasping for air. Walt and Fran, when in Florida, always come out to stand with us, or our sister protest in Daytona. They both suffer from various maladies, and are in their 70's as well. Yet, they wouldn't miss it for anything.
I see so many Soccer Moms and Dads driving the kids to the fields of play near my place of business. Good parents, most likely good people. Yet, one wonders, if we had a military draft now, and those youngsters were approaching 17 and 18, what would those Soccer parents do about this war on Iraq? Would some of them, the ones who see through the false witness of the Bush gang, would they be standing next to Rita and Walt and Fran and me? And those senior citizens who beep and wave to us; if their grand kids were about to be drafted, would they then park and join us? Food for thought.
Folks, with all due respect, the time for simply honking and venting to each other is over. Its time for action, citizen participation. Two weeks ago, during a Tuesday protest, a lady from our group stood alone on the opposite street corner, as she usually does. Her reasoning is that we need to extend our visibility, in hopes of attracting more participants. Well, this day some jerk decided to throw eggs at her, successfully. She was hit more than once, in her face and on her chest. If we had 100 on that corner with her, do you think that coward would ever do such a thing?
" Silence in the face of tyranny gives it license." Wake up America and retake our street corners.
Philip A Farruggio is a small business owner, free lance columnist and activist organizer. He has over 55 columns posted on various sites, including Op Ed News, Afterdowningstreet.org and counterpunch.com . He can be reached a firstname.lastname@example.org