April 3, 2004
MATTHEW HOY REPORTS on an antiwar protest and counterprotest, in San Diego: “First, the assorted leftist A.N.S.W.E.R. groups managed to turn out less than 50 people — and three dogs. The dogs were nice.”
He’ll have photos later. [He has them now. And LT Smash has photos now, too, and reports “I was interviewed on camera by FOX 6, KUSI 9, and KFMB 8 (CBS); a reporter from the Union-Tribune also interviewed me. The press didn’t spend much time with the A.N.S.W.E.R. folks — I guess they’d heard all of their talking points before.”]
UPDATE: Reader Matt Laflin emails:
I was at the rally in San Diego today.
Group organized by Smash: each person had an American flag.
Group organized by A.N.S.W.E.R: several Palestinian flags, a handful of Iraqi flags (including the version with Saddam’s handwriting), a Cuban flag, and one American flag.with a peace sign in place of the stars.
That just about says it all for me.
Incidentally, one of the A.N.S.W.E.R. people ended a series of invectives aimed at us with: “You guys just go home to your blogs!”
Heh. It’s getting to them, I guess.
ANOTHER UPDATE: Click “More” to read it.
From Thomas Vago, another reader who attended:
I was also at this “rally” today, and it was pretty pathetic. I was expecting hundreds, or maybe even 1000 or so people to show up, and only about 50 did. I noticed they were trying to portray them selves as “patriots,” yet the first thing out of the first speakers’ mouth was “USA out of North America,” and this as after we yelled out our pro-American suggestions for rallying slogans.
There was, of course, the notable absence of US flags (save the one with the peace symbol in place of the Union). Us military members, the very same people they were claiming to support, were portrayed in the usual fashion, that of poor, uneducated sheep. There were about 10 Palestinan flags, 3 Saddamite Iraq flags, a Cuban flag, and a North Korean flag being prominently displayed during the actual march. It was ironic that they decided about halfway into the march to yell out “This is what a democracy looks like!”
They actually seemed to get a little testy toward the end of the march, when we played “Amazing Grace,” “God Bless The USA,” and similar songs on LT Smash’s boombox. Perhaps it was all of the cars that waved at us… Perhaps it was because we kept on yelling out pro-US slogans over their slogans…
Perhaps it was because they could only attract teenagers to their group…
Perhaps it was because this family, whose home we passed near the very end, yelled out words of encouragement to us while ignoring the anti-war types.
Of particular note was the fact that we initially were invited to join their little group, then were rudely kicked out by a guy who was the San Diego chair for an organization called “SNAFU.” Being as this organization’s stated mission is apparently to unionize the military, I would have thought he would have been better able to comport himself so as to make his organization look more attractive to the military. After all, no less than two of us who were in that group are currently in the military (LT Smash and myself). However, he resorted to the tired old “fascists” insults. So much for gathering support for his military related cause…
I did have a good time, though. I got to meet Smash in person, as well as Michael Hoy, Jeff “xlrq” of damnum absque injuria. I got to meet some other really good people there, too. There was a lone man who wanted to participate with us, but he had the bad luck of not knowing about our counterprotest until it actually occurred. I did agree with his sentiment, though. His placard read “9/11” on one side, and “We didn’t forget” on the other. I have the feeling that, had we had more time than a day or so, we might have organized an even larger pro-US response. Maybe next time…