Thursday, November 17, 2011

Occupy DC Vist (continued)

The biggest surprise that I got at the Occupy DC protest was that all of the occupiers that we encountered and gave pocket Constitutions to seemed pleased to get them.  I had assumed that many would be repelled by them or have been full of the “written by white slave-holders” crap.  However that wasn’t the case.  No doubt the only part of the Constitution that they thought they understood was the part about freedom of speech, but having the whole thing might enlighten a few.  They didn’t seem to be acquainted with the document. 

This young man sitting in his pajamas in the rain was almost giddy when I offered him the Constitution.  He informed me that it was the greatest thing that Abraham Lincoln had ever written.  He was on a roll so I didn’t stop and correct him.  He went on to express disappointment that the booklet didn’t contain the Articles of Confederation.  He asked me if I knew that technically we were still under those.  I just smiled.  No doubt another victim of the public school system. 

My first encounter with an occupier was a twenty something girl in front of the “library.”  I offered her a Constitution and she happily took it from me.  While that happened a much older woman walked over to us and asked us if we had been to Montpelier (I assume she was making the connection between Madison and the Constitution) and I acknowledged that I had.  The occupier cut back in asking me why I was there and I responded that I had grown up in the 60’s and 70’s and had witnessed those demonstrations.  She became more animated and asked me if I had participated and I told her I was on the other team, attending college on the NROTC program and being commissioned in the Marine Corps during that time.  She asked me if they [the occupiers] embodied the same spirit as the demonstrators of that time.  I opined that they did not but that they were motivated by the same people.  I didn’t get the opportunity to elaborate as the other lady chipped in that she was 71 (that was a surprise as she didn’t look it) and that she had been in DC when “350,000 marched” on the city to protest the Viet Nam War.  She seemed particularly proud that she had overcome her gentile up bringing and was able to shout “ . . . . we don’t want your F***ing war!”  A word that she said she had never uttered prior to that day but did use again in our conversation.  No doubt something to make one proud.  The first time I said “f***” in my father’s presence, he looked at me sternly and said “I know amateurs who can swear better than that.”  I was tempted to use that line, but I let the conversation roll.  

That appeared to be enough for the young occupier who excused herself – she was a part-time demonstrator and had to get back to Maryland she explained.  I don’t know what happened to the older lady, no doubt she drifted off to try and reconnect with her potty mouth years.  Proof that knuckleheads come in all ages.  

I talked to the guy in the blue slicker as it was labeled “Transport Workers Union; We move America.”  I asked him if he was a union member and he said “No, they just gave us these ponchos.  They let us take showers at the AFL-CIO headquarters down the street.”  I smiled. “That’s nice.”  I’m sure that all you union guys and gals are happy that a portion of your dues is sustaining this protest.  You might want to have a word with your leadership. 

There is more to come.  


  1. Amigo,
    Check this out:

  2. "...attending college on the NROTC program..."

    I about choked when I read that. I will have to give you credit for being a big cut above the rest. I know first hand how hard that program was to get into at that time.

    This will sound really mean, but it still makes me chuckle (sorry to anyone I offend). You must remember walking through the protesters before the President's Review (that would be the University President). They tried to steal our hats, but we were all so do I say this politely...bigger than them. Plus the difference between the way we looked all groomed and in uniform; and the protesters all unkempt and raggedy. Hey, it was the early 70's, there was a war going on and there was a draft. Even if you disagreed with the war, you did what your Country expected of you. I will never apologize for doing that (it still gets me in trouble with people who don't get it).

  3. Very interesting read. I look forward to your additions.

  4. A lot of those clowns have little clue as to what the constitution has written on it nor, do they understand the meaning.

    My guess is that they were happy just to be getting something for free from you and, probably threw it away after noticing that it wasn't a coupon for a freebie someplace.

  5. Hardnox,

    That is a classic - thanks for sharing.

  6. NW Ohio,

    Thank you for the kind word - going to class in a uniform was interesting in that day and age. We had to defend the building a time or two.

  7. Paladin,

    Thank you - it was an experience rich in anecdotes. I'm actually thinking about going back. I wish I was there today as they were going to try and take a bridge during rush hour.

  8. -Sepp,

    You are probably right. I would like to think that a few of them might read it.

  9. Doubt it CS.

    They read the preamble and, decide that "promoting" the General welfare somehow means "provide" welfare...ask muddy, he's one of em.

  10. -Sepp,

    I can't argue that point - some of our Congressman think that way.