Over 10,000 citizens attend historic protest in Washington DC, news stations absent
Ten thousand people united in solidarity for a common cause, a common dream, can be an impressive and inspiring sight. As a realist who pays attention to the details, I usually find myself bereft of hope that people are going to wake up and realize their civil liberties are being legislated out of their hands while they were busy watching Dancing with the Stars and washing it down with some Fox News. But I just saw ten thousand people marching down Constitution Ave in our nation's capital, gloriously and enthusiastically wielding their love of the idea of American freedom. Twenty-first century citizens connected to the passions of eighteenth century revolutionaries, while brandishing banners demanding political policy reform, an end to a war, and the impeachment of a president. And one more thing: an end to the media blackout of Ron Paul. I stood on a stage holding my guitar, steps from the Capital building, and watched in spellbound silence an endless parade of people marching towards me much like the Iraq war, with no end in sight, shouting the name of their advocate, and ready to make some noise.
I'm talking about the Revolution March that took place in Washington DC on July 12th. If you were unaware that this historic and monumental event happened, then you are one of MILLIONS who have been grossly under-informed about the freedom movement inspired by Ron Paul's campaign. You may not have heard about the most controversial candidate in the presidential race, or maybe you have heard of him, but think he's "that crazy Texan" or has "no chance" of winning, or that he's incompetent, or a "libertarian." Ooh, that word just gives me the willies!
The Revolution March was a major event, well organized and well attended. The March itself took place down the length of Constitution Ave. in DC and ended on the Mall at the feet of the Capital Building. The line-up included renowned speakers such as authors Naomi Wolf and G. Edward Griffin, and "Iraqi Veterans Against the War" movement organizer Adam Kokesh, as well as freedom loving music performers such as the Jordan Page Band and veteran revolutionary rockers Pokerface. A sea of patriots, gathered together at a major political rally to support the constitution, and it got absolutely no media coverage whatsoever. Not even local channels. This is indicative of the game that news media has played in the stonewalling of Congressman Ron Paul, the keynote speaker at the Revolution March. Dr. Paul is a candidate who has been campaigning against the grain of corporate American imperialism. He has set records for GOP campaign fundraising and has inspired a national movement of citizen patriots to defend the terminally wounded constitution. You remember that old parchment that says "We the People..." on it? Ron Paul is dangerous because he shines a spotlight on the processes and groups who seek to capitalize off the fall of America. Those same groups own the media across the board and have tried to silence his campaign at every turn. He is not touting nostalgic sentiments about how great change is (yet never providing a definition of what that will entail), nor does he claim an exacerbated plan to bomb Muslims off the face of the earth and plant an American flag over Mecca.
We need to be aware that we live in a country where the only individuals who are allowed to be viable candidates for president are those who fit into the picture that corporate interests want to see in the leading role for their own string-less Pinocchio act. People like Ron Paul who speak out against the real threats to our country, (namely Dick Cheney, Daddy Bush and all his Bushlets, and the old white men who control the Federal Reserve), are ridiculed or systematically left out of the punditry and political public conversation. Its funny how the same folks who are making billions profiteering off the Iraq invasion with Pentagon contracts are the ones who own the major news stations and publications putting out a pro-war, terror-threat message while silencing and discrediting the peacemakers and opposition. Actually, it's not funny at all.
I performed with my band at the Revolution March and came to realize how powerful the freedom movement is. It's bigger than Ron Paul is, and it was bigger than the march itself. I'm talking about a widespread movement to combat the rise of fascism in this country through awareness and public cohesion. I remember saying to the crowd that picking up a rifle and joining the military isn't the only way to fight for your country, that I've picked up my guitar and raised my voice against the men and policies that are quickly moving us into Check Mate.
I was inspired and angered listening to Naomi Wolf clearly outline the ten steps that historically bring an open free society into the darkness of totalitarian dictatorship. A process through which America is currently undergoing. I listened in awe to Adam Kokesh, an Iraq veteran whose brilliant oratory about his experiences in combat, his hatred of all things Bush Administration, and his passion for freedom had all of us ready to storm the Capital. In the blistering heat a massive gathering kept their energy strong all day, many having traveled far and wide to attend. It was the first time I really saw with my own eyes that degree of fellowship and brotherhood for a common cause fundamental to our way of life.
With the grandeur of the Capital Building as our immediate backdrop, we spoke and sang about liberty, and the danger that we face as a nation when torture of prisoners is commonplace, when private citizens are spied on, when anyone can be declared an "enemy combatant" by a president at war with himself, and when people are willing to relinquish their rights for the illusion of safety and order. The Revolution March opened many eyes on July 12th, but I realize that the ten thousand plus who attended were those who have already woken up to the impending crisis aimed at depriving America of its democracy. The challenge that we face now is bringing that message to the rest of our countrymen plugged into virtual experiences and self-obsessed routines, so that we may break free from the malaise and depression that has seized our culture. For my part, I'm going to sing about it. And maybe one day soon, Americans will resist the notion that we are isolated and powerless to affect change and the pendulum of a working democratic system of self-government may have the freedom to swing unencumbered.