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News :: DNC : Human Rights : Organizing
Fourth Day of Protests, July 28th
29 Jul 2004
The first major protest of the day, with 500 people, was a rally calling on the US government to respect human rights called, “What Have Become?: From Guantanamo to Abu Ghraib?” Another 400-500 people gathered in Blackstone Park to support a local environmental justice group calling for funding for public health, not the bioterror lab being built in their neighborhood. A group of 10 pro-gay marriage activists disrupted a DNC meeting and were removed by the police. In the early evening a street theater action took place against the “Free Speech Zone”, with activist entering it with hands bound and heads hooded, while a group of DNC delegates condemned the “Free Speech Zone”. The police were becoming increasingly aggressive throughout the day, showing up in totally disproportionate numbers to the environmental justice rally, and arrested one activist while he was walking down the street.
Fourth Day of Protests, July 28th
compiled by Matthew Williams

Wednesday, July 28th saw the fourth day of protests against the corporate-dominated Democratic National Convention, whose leadership is increasingly out of touch with its grassroots base--95% of the DNC delegates oppose the war for, instance.

Protests did not start till noon on Wednesday, with the first one being a human rights rally of 500 people in Copley Square. It was organized by United for Justice with Peace, the main Boston-area peace coalition, and entitled, “What Have We Become?: From Guantanamo to Abu Ghraib”. Speakers criticized the US government for its violations of the Constitution, human rights, and international law.

A group of ten pro-gay marriage activists managed to disrupt a DNC caucus meeting in the Back Bay Sheraton Hotel by unfurling a banner critical of Kerry’s opposition to gay marriage (he supports an amendment to Massachusetts state Constitution that would ban same-sex marriage and replace it with civil unions--articles 1, 2, 3, 4). They were escorted out by police, but not arrested. They were, however, banned from the Sheraton for life.

From 3:00 to 8:00 pm, there was a rally of 400-500 people in Blackstone Park in the neighborhood of Roxbury organized by Alternatives for Community and Environment, a local environmental justice group. They demanded that the US government fund public health measures, not the bioterror lab (articles 1, 2) they are building in conjunction with Boston University. The lab, to be located near the predominantly African-American and poor neighborhood of Roxbury, would house researchers working with deadly, incurable diseases--which, despite all the proposed security measures, could still escape into the surrounding neighborhood.

A group of DNC delegates spoke out against the “Free Speech Zone” (articles 1, 2, 3), followed by a second street theater action (the first was Monday) by Save Our Civil Liberties, with 15 people entering the “Free Speech Zone” with their hands bound and hoods on their heads, calling up images of Abu Ghraib.

The police were becoming increasingly aggressive, showing up in totally disproportionate numbers to the environmental justice rally--at times, there were almost as many police as activists. They also arrested one activist while he was walking down the street near the Convergence Center, and harassed two other groups of activists (articles 1, 2).

This work is in the public domain