Tag Archives: Tejon Street

Antiwar COS -report from the front line

Colorado Springs Tejon Street Parade August 29, 2009COLO. SPRINGS- Well, that wasn’t so hard. Our message was warmly received by soldiers who shook our hand in the staging area, and afterward we were thanked by others for what we are trying to do. Antagonism came from the crowd, but not as fiercely as we’d braced ourselves for. Eight years of horror has taken the edge off the “these colors don’t run” mentality. Hence the military imperative for parades like these. Our antiwar presence was all the more important to show the soldiers that some at home are fighting to rescue them. The rest of the attendees were giving them a “welcome home” as they did in 2004, and will keep doing only to redeploy them. The soldiers need to see more real support: a determination to stop these wars.

Colorado Springs Tejon Street Parade August 29, 2009

Colorado Springs Tejon Street Parade August 29, 2009

Compatriots of ours were circulating along the sidewalk with this flier:

We ask that you consider the costs of war
as you take part in this celebration.

War kills people. War hurts people.
War kills animals. War destroys things.
War devastates the environment.

This parade is a propaganda exercise
promoted by those who profit from war.

The money spent on war could go to
making friends instead of enemies.
Many of us are mourning today not celebrating.

Colorado Springs Tejon Street Parade August 29, 2009
Note the “American Furniture Warehouse” is the most prominent part of that “thank you” handout.

Colorado Springs Tejon Street Parade August 29, 2009
This woman was trying to drown us out with cat whistles, until I took her picture.

More of our HEALTH CARE NOT WARFARE contingent stood further south on the corner, just out of frame.

Colorado Springs Tejon Street Parade August 29, 2009
Also not pictured:
LET’S NOT WORSHIP WAR, and U.S. OUT OF AFGHANISTAN,
and my banner backdrops WAR NO MORE and PEACE NOW.

Colorado Springs Tejon Street Parade August 29, 2009
A young group made threats and tried to crowd us out, until the police intervened.

We were most appreciative of the officers’ prompt interventions, although one officer’s method was hardly comforting. He told one young lady, in a voice for us to overhear: “I know. If it were my choice I’d rip them from the sidewalk, but they have a right to be here.” We took that more as an expression of sympathy than an attempt to intimidate us.

Colorado Springs Tejon Street Parade August 29, 2009
Five officers all told, protected us, from leaping unto the parade route.

Are you in any of the parade pictures?

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009 Tejon StreetCOLORADO SPRINGS- The Coloradans For Peace parade entry got good coverage this year, from KRDO13, FOX21, and the GAZETTE, which reported the full text of our banner. Reporter Lance Benzel interviewed a number of us, and I was hoping to see one of the responses he was tickled to get from Devon, aged 11. Asked whether she was fazed by sporadic negative responses, she replied “No. They’re just uninformed.”

Devon, by the way, wasn’t going to participate in the parade, owing to the events she witnessed two years ago when marchers were brutalized by the police. But the responsibility of taking pictures got the better of her, so she accompanied the large banner, sometimes running out ahead for artistic license.

Back to my question. No doubt too many of you notice that there are no photographs of you in the St Patrick’s Day Parade. We were a little short-handed, so perhaps if you have pictures of your own, please do share.

Although the action went without a hitch, we definitely could have used extra marchers for the flag waiving and the kazoos. Rita had plenty more shamrock shaped placards, some which honored Elizabeth Fineron, others which warned of the Intelligence Fusion Centers which are begining to dominate domestic law enforcement in the name of Homeland Security.

No really, where were you on Saturday? Maybe you see plentiful options for speaking out against war. If marching with a banner reminding thousands that OCCUPATION IS A CRIME seems too confrontational to you, perhaps you favor doing something else. And what is it? Because I wasn’t aware that doing nothing is an option for activists.

Are you against the wars and occupations a little bit? More than a little bit? A lot? Are you for peace, a little bit, or a lot?

Between doing something, and doing nothing, which best describes your effort?

By not supporting the local peace efforts, whatever they are, you are certainly giving silent consent to the war parties. And by sabotaging local peace efforts you are without a doubt supporting the war. What cowards you’ve become. Self-censoring cowards.

St Patricks Day Parade photos

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
COLORADO SPRINGS- Peace contingent in St Patrick’s Day parade.

(Click on images to see larger crop.)
St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Devon decorates last minute stand-in for the Bookmobile.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Assembling at staging area, last position.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Dancers, as MaryLynn and Dave look on.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Layla and Andy

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Kat, Debbie and Lily

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Sarah, Dave and Jake on Kazoo.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Friend of Ryan and Ryan.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Amanda.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Distributing the flags

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Mike looks back as we take off.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
With motorcycle escort.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Eric and Devon.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Video grab from Mike Coletta.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Lead banner. All subsequent photos by Devon.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Dancers

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Tony leads drumming

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Drummers

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Drummers

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Pattie (three screen grabs from Loring’s video)

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Layla and Andy

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Looking down parade route

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Amanda

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Cheers

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Eric waves Iraq flag

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Amanda rides ahead

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Behind Amanda, are Jonathan, Rita, Loring and Marie.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
More peace contingent two blocks back.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Jonathan, tricked out bike, and Don’t Tread On Me.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Flags of occupied lands.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Reflection in Plaza of the Rockies.

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
At disbanding point, this police officer suddenly begins shouting MOVE MOVE MOVE!

St. Patricks Day Parade 2009
Patty triumphant.

Unsustainably powered lights on parade

Parade of Lights 2008
COLORADO SPRINGS- There used to be a float in the PARADE OF LIGHTS which set an example for energy conservation. The lights were generator-driven and the admittedly un-flashy vehicle moved along entirely under pedal power. Did it look out of place between the commercial affairs shellacked in Christmas light?

Hooters in time honored fashion

ritz bar and grill
COLORADO SPRINGS- At the Ritz Bar and Grill on Tejon St. downtown, waitresses have to bend over the counter to convey drink orders to the bartenders. There’s a raised platform to assist them in their short skirts. If the show outside is too tame for you.

I remember learning in high school that all the roles in Shakespeare’s plays, even the female characters, were portrayed by male actors. We were left to assume that women in Elizabethan England were not permitted on stage for the usual discriminatory reasons. But that was a simplification, which obscured the origins of sexism like the Burqa.

In Old England it was not that their gender was not talented enough, nor, directly, that women’s power challenged the men. Elizabethan rulers deemed it imprudent to let women advertise their wares on public stages. Women who were not at home with families, serving the domestic sex trade let’s say, were free-agent professionals. Inn keepers and barmaids had job descriptions not far removed from prostitutes, and a stage gave them too much marketing visibility. No doubt, obviously power.

I suppose sex also threatened to obscure the art of the theater. A favorite author once wrote he could only aspire to create a poem as immediately compelling as a pornographic photograph.

A friend of mine used to work at the Ritz, and assured me the skirt length was voluntary. Likewise the bar step at the center of everyone’s attention. Both great for tips she said.