Monday’s Austin Protests

  • Statesman.com: 40 arrests made in Austin peace protests on Monday
  • Statesman.com: a compelling collection of pictures from the Monday Austin protests
  • Austin IMC: Mass Action in Austin – 48 Arrests

    Several things stand out in this story. First, I commend the Austin folks for targeting their protests on folks who actually have a tie to this war… The Federal Government, military contractors, and Fox News (who are the worst warmongers in the corporate media right now).

    That said, I think the protestors did wrong by how they dealt with the police. If you intend to do C.D., don’t get a parade permit and then break off and do something else. Don’t make the cops’ job harder than it needs to be. Either tell them nothing and get no permits, or tell them everything. Playing games with the cops just makes it harder for other activists to do lawful protests. Certainly some want to do C.D. and that is great. I commend you if you do it right. Other do not, but still want to speak out and protest. There’s no reason to purposely antagonize the cops without reason.

    Another thing in the Statesman story is at the end where it discusses what happend in San Marcos last night:

      In San Marcos, about a dozen protesters descended on a City Council meeting to speak out against a proposed resolution supporting President Bush, as well as Mayor Robert Habingreither’s characterization of an anti-war demonstration on the town square Thursday as “disgusting.”

      The meeting was temporarily halted after shouting matches erupted among the crowd and protesters balked at putting down their signs inside the council chambers.

      “I’m going to hold this sign up!” Lamar Hankins, whose son-in-law is serving in Iraq, told the council. “If you want to have me arrested, have me arrested.”

      After a 10-minute break, Habingreither agreed to let protesters hold their signs. The council then voted unanimously to support the resolution, which also included a clause saying, “The people of San Marcos, Texas include both citizens who support a war with Iraq and citizens who seek a peaceful resolution to the conflict.”

      Before voting, Habingreither told the crowd he made a poor choice of words in describing the protesters last week but said he was concerned that current troops would face the same ill feeling that their Vietnam-era predecessors did.

      After the council voted, a protester yelled, “You lost a lot of votes tonight.”

    I got agree with the San Marocs folks. Habingreither needs to go. His pseudo-apology was an insult to peace activists. I don’t know ANY peace activists who would disrespect indidivual soldiers or treat them badly. This war is not the GI’s fault. The war is the Administration’s fault. There is a tremendous amount of anger (and even hatred to some extent) right now for the Bush and Blair administrations, and for the military top brass. But, again I have heard no one disrespect individual GI’s. I myself would be very, very disappointed if that every occured.

    Mayor Habingreither should know better than to say stupid things like this.