Bob Dart and Whitney Boyd of Cox News Service report on Saturday’s [Sept. 15, 2007] protest in the nation’s capitol against the war in Iraq, focusing on the Texans there.
They tell us:
Charlie Jackson, a 48-year-old anti-war activist from Austin, waved the Texas state flag in front of the White House on Saturday to rally opposition to the Iraq policy of the Texan who lives inside.
What we’re trying to do still is to end this war. We’ve got to keep the pressure up in Washington, in El Paso, in McAllen. We’ve got to do it until we get this thing stopped,” said Jackson, a technology firm executive and the founder of Texans for Peace.
Led by men and women who have fought in Iraq, Jackson was among thousands of protesters from across the country who gathered at Lafayette Park, across from the White House, and then marched up Pennsylvania Avenue to the U.S. Capitol — reversing the route of an inaugural parade.
The number of people against the war is growing. Many are frustrated because the Congress can’t get the administration off the dime to stop it. Now they’re talking about five more years,” said Jackson.
A smaller number of counterprotesters lined the sidewalks along the way, but even many of them agreed that those who had fought in the war had earned a right to speak out on it.
I’m hoping that this march will be historic,” said Leslie Harris, a retired teacher from Flower Mound. “It is led by Iraq veterans against the war. Nobody can say they’re not patriotic. They volunteered to defend our country, but they found out that’s not what we’re doing in Iraq.”
Opposing views were displayed on hundreds of placards and T-shirts. A model oil derrick opened and closed Bush’s mouth on one sign. “Hey Dick, Take George Hunting,” another said.
The image, however, that caught my eye was the disturbing sight of the American flag being carried upside down, even if by war veterans.
The report continues with:
I’m here just out of frustration with Congress,” echoed Dave Jensen, 55, a building contractor from Tyler.
“The public sentiment in this country is against the war. So the time has come for Congress to defund it. There’s enough money in the pipeline to get the troops home.”
A comparison to Vietnam is apt, said Jensen. “If we withdraw now, the result is going to be the same as it will be if we withdraw in 10 years.”
At least 150 people were arrested, many for jumping over a barricade near the base of the Capitol.
Source: Houston Chronicle
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