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Review :: War and Militarism
Protest Draws New Audience
30 Oct 2007
Muggy weather didn’t hold back protestors last Saturday in Boston. Fog clouds against the Prudential building was the view at the anti-war protest, which brought in newcomers and protest veterans at Boston Common.
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Photo: John C. Johnstone
Protestors voiced their opinions verbally, on their t-shirts and on posters. While some t-shirts stuck out with phrases like, “Leave no billionaire behind,” many posters shared similar messages of peace and war termination requests.

The protest was comprised of speeches and performances from a high school student’s poem to hip-hop song and dance.

Performances also spanned across the crowd with a set of triplets and their display. The three sisters stood on separate podiums wearing distinctive outfits: the first in business attire, the second in military attire and the third in traditional Muslim attire. Each girl stood imprinted with a number on her forward, representing the number of causalities in her respective category.

Behind the sisters stood rows of military boots that once belonged to deceased soldiers. And behind the boots stood pillars ten pillars of names, representing soldiers who have died in Iraq and Afghanistan. Those written in white represented soldiers who had died before Memorial Day 2007 and those written in black represented those who died after Memorial Day.

Alyssa Baldino, a graduate of Saint Michael’s College, heard about the protest on the internet. Although happy with the cause, Alyssa would’ve liked “to see more people here.”

Garry Wright, also a graduate of Saint Michael’s College, also believed in the cause. Both Alyssa and Garry have attended protests in Washington, D.C. “D.C. was bigger and more impactual,” Wright said.

James Sowden, a student at Emerson College, showed much support for the protest. “I was passing by. I heard about the protest and decided to come check it out.”

Although not an activist or avid protestor against war, Sowden said he’ll definitely vote for a presidential candidate who is against the Iraq war.

Sowden also enjoyed the ambiance of the protest. “Seems like there’s good spirit and I enjoy hearing people’s arguments,” Sowden said. Adding, however that lack of impact the protest may have. “I think people are still going to do what they’re going to do. I don’t think its going to change anyone’s mind. People, who acted against the war before, are activists, will go home and do that as they did before.”

The protest even attracted new comer Henry Giang, who with his three friends are taking a cross-country road trip. “This is our first stop on the way to Northern California,” Giang said. “We’re not political, but this is awesome. Pretty amazing. We saw this and were surprised; thought ‘wow this is intense’.” Giang and his friends hope to come across more protests like this on their journey. When it comes to voting, Giang said they will definitely try depending on where they are in November, but added that the protest has influenced them already.

This work is in the public domain