12
Sep
15

Her Name Was Joanne pt. 1

joanne-1

I suppose Mick Jagger was right when he told us you can’t always get what you want, but if you try some times, you get what you need.

While sifting through the dozens of unsolicited emails I receive on a daily basis, I noticed one from that irritating group known as Move On; typically, I trash their emails immediately because they’re asking for a signature on some moot petition or money donations to support their email campaigns. The organization’s past success at being an obstacle to the conservative electorates of this world drove them to become the monster they worked so hard to defeat. The ills they saw in the conservative agenda crept into their own bedroom, which leaves me to (typically) ignore them now days. This email caught my eye though. Huge splashing banners in the message announcing a rally, right here in Sleepytown. A vigil for Peace and Diplomacy on the steps of the Circle Monument in the heart of downtown Indianapolis. According to the email, Congress was set to vote on diplomacy, or war, with Iran. Move On was rallying boots on the ground to protest in favor of diplomacy. This seemed like an opportunity to see a local protest, a visceral observation of local anarchy in action.

It had been a few years since I had partaken and observed a modern day protest. The last time was back in the infancy of the Church blog, when I followed the Occupy Denver movement in Denver, Colorado; a failed revolution for the twenty first century. After a year’s worth of following the political zombies there, I was left with remorse and apathy for the strength of revolution in today’s society. I needed to put this to the test though; here I was, hundreds of miles away from the Rocky Mountain state, a totally different flavor of U.S. citizens, and my curiosity had me wondering if Hoosiers could make this protest work. Sleepytown is, after all, the birthplace of my own indoctrination to the protesting side of society. In my teens I had attended a few protest movements in Indy, caught in the middle of the police clubs and gas, so I knew that Indianapolites did have a legacy of mixing it up when the caused called. In fact, Hoosiers can be downright nasty about it, like a bunch of fucking hillbilly berserkers…but that was then and this is now. I needed to see what the current state standing of the local occupants was-and I didn’t have a lot of faith in them. Denver had left a bad taste in my mouth in that regard.

I had a ride arranged to get to the rally and everything was set in motion. Then, in the eleventh hour, I started scanning the most recent U.S. news headline stories and saw that the vote to option going to war with Iran had been defeated. The diplomacy option had won so now, the entire protest was unnecessary. My heart sank a bit, even though I did find it good news to know our country would not get involved in another killing melee across the ocean. I felt there may still be some remnants of political fodder down there. I just happened to stumble on the story not more than 3 hours prior to the arranged time of protest so, perhaps a group of protestors might still show up. I had nothing better to do so I kept to my original plan and headed downtown.

I got to the Circle and slowly paced the perimeter to see if I could spy out any gathering of sign shakers, any fevered soul running around in a Guy Fawkes mask. My first inclination that I was getting close was when I spied out a local tv news van parked on the curb, the on site reporter coordinating with the cameraman to synch everything, electronically. Then I turned my head and….there it was. The power and strength of protest, in all it’s glory; a total of eight old fucks standing on the Monument steps holding signs and talking among themselves. Eight people. This was hardly what I would call a rally. No one there was under the age of sixty-perhaps one lady-and the whole thing screamed with a sobering realism that had me wondering, what had become of our country? Even taking into consideration that possibly most people opted out (if they had been contacted by Move On to say the revolution had been cancelled), I would imagine there would have been a few more political enthusiasts hanging around, but all that I could see was the eight senior citizens on the steps with their tired faces and sagging signs.

Jesus wept.

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