Q: How big is the DNC for Denver?And a column by "Miranda K. Bacon," the paper's "Denver Crime Examiner," who's skeptical of Glenn Spagnuolo and Recreate-68:
It’s beginning to sink in on people how big this will be. I talked to the head of the state utility in Utah recently. He was describing the Olympics six years ago, and he said that everyone he knows considers it the most important event in Salt Lake after statehood. I think it’s going to be similar here. That sense of history, that sense of moment is something that can have a lot to do with how your city is viewed in many, many ways. . . .
Q: What about the downside of the DNC? Is there a risk when you consider protesters?
I think 99 percent of the protesters want to express their opposition to the war, they want to express a viewpoint about some issue. I think there’s 1 percent that really want to cause trouble. And there is a risk. We have to accept that. [Hick details the extra training cops are getting]. . .
Q. Have you studied Chicago and how Mayor Richard Daley handled, or mishandled, the protests which turned violent at the Democratic convention in 1968? Recreate 68 seems to be invoking that sort of protest again?
I was a kid back then, but certainly I have looked at what happened. Recreate 68 is talking. I’m not sure that many people are listening. Most of the protesters I’ve talked to don’t want anything to do with Recreate 68. They’re going to try and provoke violence. But most people we talked to, that’s the last thing they want to do.
I don’t believe that being kept behind a chain-link fence – which last time I checked wasn’t opaque or sound proof – is oppression or overreaching restriction. And it’s not like the demonstration area is blocks away – it’s a couple of hundred yards.
Additionally, dignitaries, government leaders and celebrities will be in attendance. Those types attract all manners of whack-jobs, and who is to say one such nutter wouldn’t refocus his or her attention on some demonstrator, peaceful or otherwise?
My sentiments are on the contrary to Spagnuolo and his crew – and this is coming from a proud, albeit redistributed [huh?] member of the fourth estate.
I think these moves are all proof that Denver, the state and the federal government are doing all they can to ensure the safety of DNC attendees and of those who want to demonstrate and protest outside.
Spagnuolo and his crew are fighting a ridiculous battle, and I think it’s sullying a momentous occasion in American history.
Your sense of momentousness may vary.Recreate-68 rival the Alliance for Real Democracy has published its schedule for the convention. Besides the usual marches and protests, events include the ongoing Resurrection City Free University ("a free university focused on praxis and theory"); "A Walk in their Shoes--Thousands of shoes will represent the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis who have died"; nomination of a "Partyless Youth Ticket"; speeches by Cynthia McKinney and Cornel West; "Operation First Casualty--Street theater that demonstrates the reality of war"; and concerts, including one sponsored by CodePink that will spotlight "many powerful and talented women."
Dear Leader-in-training El Presidente has the whole bloody thing.
Finally, R!68's Mark Cohen said yesterday that the group will shun the "freedom cage":
"We plan to go in that zone once only to protest its existence," said Mark Cohen, co-founder and organizer of advocacy group Recreate 68. "When the media presents images of demonstrators in the demonstration zones in relationship to the Pepsi Center, the public will see what could look like prisoners."Gee, where will they be for the rest of the time?