March 21, 2003

Blogging The Protests

Derek Powazek: “We need to show the world that smart, rational, intelligent people oppose the war for good reasons. Not because we think Saddam is a kick in the pants, but because we don’t believe in punishing the people of Iraq just because we haven’t mounted bin Ladin’s head on our wall yet. And because we don’t believe our president when he says that Iraq has something to do with the horrible events of September 11, 2001. And because we all know that there really was no pressing need to do this now, except for our oversized national ego.”

Jason Zada: “I will leave my personal opinion out this, because after standing in the middle of 2nd st., as thousands and thousands of protestors streamed by, and hundreds and hundreds of police in full riot gear followed, I am speechless. Captured on video, that might show up here eventually, this was by far one of the most interesting things I have ever seen.”

For more, try Daypop.

[Later: Jason Kottke photoblogs the NYC protest on Saturday. Huge march. Excellent photos.]


Derek Gomez

Powazek’s got a point and if it’s heeded, will certainly make the opposition movement stronger.

Clayton Simmons

1: ‘Smart,’ ‘rational’ and ‘intelligent’ people are what the anti-war movement needs.

2: Operation Iraqi Freedom is not to “punish the people of Iraq,” but to punish Saddam Hussein’s regime. The “people of Iraq” who have seen through his brain-washing tactics by means of media propoganda for the last two decades want him DEAD.

3: In all probability, we would have eventually been at war with Saddam’s regime despite 9/11. To believe that this is the main cause of our current war is to be sucked in by partially-credible and often lopsided media. Saddam’s regime has been enriching uranium, preparing atomic and chemical weapons of mass destruction since Saddam’s 1979 innaguration. Using these weapons against innocent groups of people led to Desert Storm and, may I remind you, President Clinton’s bombing campaign against Saddam in Baghdad. He is a classic thug military dictator whose hero is Stalin. He licentiously oppresses, rapes and kills innocent people. Everbody knew this until his deceitful tactics eventually swayed even western leaders and their good people, who now walk blindly, claiming such things as “President Bush is more of a threat to world peace than Saddam Hussein.”

4: A question. Since hindsight is usually closer to 20/20, was there a pressing need to disarm Adolf Hitler’s Nazi regime in 1935? It may not have appeared so then, but thank goodness there are some willing to learn from our (and mostly Western Europe’s) mistake now not to intervene when we could have.

5: I know that deducing facts to make rational arguments is a learned skill that not everbody is capable of doing, but what I would like to see are substantial arguments based on facts—the history of Saddam’s regime and our world. I hate war and needless fighting and I sympathize with those whose emotions have overcome them. But as we all know, emotions can cast dark shadows on truth and reason. I also believe that in order to responsibly fulfill our role as the world leader whose track record has much much much more good than bad, wickedness must be stamped out before it ensnares you and me.

Finally, I apologize for being so vocally disagreeable on somebody else’s weblog, but I feel slightly justified as there are tens of thousands of people pooping and barfing and acting like animals on my intersections…And to think that here we are at a heightened state of alert against terrorist activity and all our law enforcement is made to spend their 12-hour days cleaning it all up. Really!

Walt Dickinson

“I feel slightly justified as there are tens of thousands of people pooping and barfing and acting like animals on my intersections.”

Goodness man, where do you live? Run, run for your life! =-)

In all seriousness, you make some good points but there are some big generalizations as well. For example, there are smart, rational, and intelligent people in the anti-war movement. Yes, there are also some full-blown nutcases. There are also some bloodthirsty psychopaths on the other side. “Anyone who is 100% sure of the morality of their position with regard to the war in Iraq probably hasn’t understood the issues involved.” [Via Kottke]

Rachelle Bowden

i wish i i’d have gone uptown to observe the protesters today.. i had plans all day. on the news it looked like there were about 3 trilion people in times square.

Clayton Simmons

Walt: I see your point. I guess I’m as prone to “one-siding” this debate as the next person.

I didn’t, however, mean to imply that there aren’t rational and intelligent people in the anti-war camp. I just meant to condemn instances where unfounded rhetoric is used in catchy banner slogans as a substitute for well-thought-out arguments based on facts, not suspicions.

“Anyone who is 100% sure of the morality of their position with regard to the war in Iraq probably hasn’t understood the issues involved.” [Via Kottke]

Wholeheartedly AGREE. Reminds me of what Bertrand Russel once said: “The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts.”

I apologize for coming across condescendingly. I warned against letting emotion overshadow reason and clearly let my emotions get the better of me. I have to confess, it happened again last night (until my wife calmed me down), when the documentary filmmaker made his outlandish comments.

I want to make it clear that I am all for constructive debate re: this conflict. I know it may seem that we have already chosen our political stances and that it is impossible to change at this point, but I think it’s important to remember that there are only two kinds of people who don’t change their minds—perfect people and stupid people. That is directed to me as much as everyone else.