"Sunday, on the eve of the Democratic Convention, thousands of people will march against the United States' illegitimate occupations in the Middle East. Permits for the march were blocked until a lawsuit challenged the City of Denver and the Secret Service. Even so, the permit does not allow a march to the Pepsi Center where the convention will start the next day.
We will be in the lead contingent of the march. Our demands are righteous. But while we see editorials in the US press decrying the suppression of protest in Beijing, the preparations in Denver include barbed wire topped "protest zones" and surveillance against people who take notes, use maps, ride bicycles or take photos. Is there "free speech" or is there a police state while the Democrats meet?
Join us to make political dissent massive! As people with our histories of disrupting and challenging President Nixon in public, we're calling on other public figures, writers, DNC delegates, and artists to help lead the march."
--Ron Kovic and Debra Sweet
A rally and march calling for an end to war and occupations led by the Bush administration is being held with Cindy Sheehan, Ron Kovic, Cynthia McKinney, and other leaders of activist/citizen group organizations like Debra Sweet from the World Can't Wait---Drive Out the Bush Regime at the forefront of the actions. The march is not permitted to go to the Pepsi Center, where the Democratic National Convention is being held, but the press and people in Denver are watching to see if antiwar leaders will stop at the end of their permitted route.
The city of Denver is overrun with police forces right now that are meant to intimidate the activists coming up to Denver to get their message out in various ways throughout the week of the convention.
There has been a massive disinformation and misinformation campaign to convince the people of Denver that those visiting to participate in rallies, marches, and "festivals of democracy", etc. are coming to Denver to make their lives difficult.
Yet, as we walked along the streets handing out fliers about upcoming events and talking to people about the big political questions, many were intimidated and put off by the police presence.
At the Johnson & Wales College, the National Guard is being housed and allowed to occupy the college's parking lot.
Of course, there's also "Gitmo on the Platte."
Whatever the people who participate in actions do today, they know their message is being managed and that they have to speak with moral clarity and utilize self-control so that the press can accurately represent what people speaking out came to say and so that the police are not unnecessarily provoked.
Anger and courage, hope's two daughters, will be at the rally and march. Meeting hope and change head on, this rally & march will set some terms for the Democrats in the upcoming week.