Sep 082004
 
Authors: Ryan Chapman

So the violent, war-mongering Republicans wrapped up their convention last week while the peaceful, civilized protestors outside the event headed home without incident … I don’t think so.

Last week in New York City, protestors, most of whom were protesting the war in Iraq and President Bush’s foreign policy, engaged in the most obscene, embarrassing display of idiocy any political convention has ever seen.

Contrary to reports by the mainstream media, approximately 850 arrests were made by the New York Police Department during the convention, according to the NYPD’s Web site. Many of these were arrests made for assaulting police officers – police officers like Detective William Sample Jr., who was struck in the head and knocked off of his vehicle, then savagely beaten and kicked to the pleasure of the crowd.

One police officer received third-degree burns on his hands after protestors began lighting fires, and another was hospitalized when he was hit in the face with a glass bottle.

Now I don’t know about you, but for me nothing conjures images of world peace like an innocent police officer being smashed in the face with a bottle.

The group “Black Block,” an anarchist organization, even smuggled homemade pipe bombs into the protests and several were arrested for arson, according to the NYPD.

At indymedia.org out of the United Kingdom, a member of this group described the group as, “… People who have enough guts to put their liberty and health on the line by destroying property belonging to companies who are responsible for the deaths and misery of millions.” It then calls the police “agents of oppression.”

That sounds like another group I know – al Qaeda.

Now that may be a little extreme, but it seems to me that if you are fighting for a more peaceful country/world, it would be logical to be peaceful yourself.

Maybe I’m just old-fashioned.

Don’t get me wrong, though; the right to protest and express your beliefs is what makes me proud to be an American. I have no problem with people gathering to bring attention to their cause. And that is what the majority of these people were doing.

What I have a problem with is that these few “rebels” are not just making a bad name for Liberals but for the United States’ entire democratic process. If you don’t like the president or his policies, vote for someone else. It is that simple.

What did these people achieve by destroying the city and attacking people? What did they earn as a reward for running into the convention hall and disrupting speakers? Other than an all-expenses-paid vacation upstate, the answer, my friends, is nothing, nothing but a reputation as delinquents who don’t understand how democracy works.

In November, I encourage everyone to take this into consideration and for those planning on voting for the party that promotes peace, you may want to take a very careful look at which one that really is.

Ryan Chapman is junior business marketing major. Ryan is a member of College Republicans and Coolness USA. His column runs every other Thursday in the Collegian.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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