Camp Casey Detroit

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Over 3,000 people marched and rallied in Salt Lake City

I got this on the net.



Dayne Goodwin

Over 3,000 people marched and rallied in Salt Lake City on September
24. Saturday's demonstration was organized around unity on one
political issue: "Support the Troops, Bring Them Home Now! U.S. Out of
Iraq." The crowd was fairly representative of the (limited) diversity
of Utah's population.

The rally at the city government building included anti-war songs,
hip-hop, poetry and speakers in the following order: Salt Lake City
Mayor Ross "Rocky" Anderson, Reverend Dan Webster of the Episcopal Peace
Fellowship, United Steelworkers union representative Julie Holzer of
U.S. Labor Against the War, Isaac Giron of Youth for Socialist Action
(who participated in World Youth Festival in Venezuela in August), Tala
Fakhouri of Utahns for a Just Peace in the Holy Land, Gina Cornia of
Utahns Against Hunger, Robert Littlehale, M.D., of Veterans for Peace
and Joan Maymi of Gold Star Families for Peace.

In addition to the growing opposition to the war, the mayor's support
for the protest had a lot to do with it's relative success. I met Rocky
Anderson when he became an activist in the Central America solidarity
movement some twenty years ago; he is an unusually independent-minded
and radical Democrat. Last month an Anderson e-mail promoting protest
when President Bush came to Salt Lake to speak to the Veterans of
Foreign War national convention (August 22) was leaked to the press.
Instead of etreating, Anderson stepped up his support for that protest
(of around 2,000 on short notice) and he sent out a letter supporting
the local September 24 demonstration.

Whereas the August 22 anti-Bush protest was a happy, united affair
among the liberals and 'radical' Democrats who naturally took
leadership, preparing the September 24 protest was difficult, with
tension among organizers over issues that brought out political
differences between Democrats, 'radicals' who want to influence the
Democrat Party, revolutionaries who want to build a politically
independent mass movement, and the local 'anarchist' expression of
ultraleftism. The continuing bitter split in the Utah Green Party
(between those who supported the independent Nader-Camejo 2004
presidential campaign and those who supported the GPUS national officer
clique in _de facto_ support of John Kerry) and the resultant overlay of
personal antagonisms that involve some key local anti-war activists,
exacerbated the usual challenges facing a small group of volunteer

Although we weren't a very happy group, and organizing work suffered as
a result, we still managed to work together and mobilize a strong
anti-war demonstration that was even larger than the pre-war early 2003
demonstrations in Salt Lake City.


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