Shadow: The '60s Alternative 

  Shadow: The '60s Alternative 

Posted by FoM on August 15, 2000 at 15:16:33 PT
By Anne-Marie O'Connor, Times Staff Writer 
Source: Los Angeles Times 

The other convention in town takes an activist approach to its issues. A major focus is bringing the have-nots closer to the haves. The last time America reached this level of prosperity and political street protest was the '60s.   That combination of social forces helped set the stage Monday for the Shadow Convention, which took on the appearance of a '60s revival meeting, including a surprise standoff with riot police and street theater by author Gore Vidal. 
  As Angelenos streamed in wearing jeans, caftans and Indian-print skirts, the dusty neo-Mediterranean marble corridors of Patriotic Hall hummed with the purposeful festivity of a '60s coffeehouse, the intensely engaged sociability of a sit-in and the anticipation of a pre-rally meeting.   The veterans center was transformed into a center for another breed of self-professed patriots, and cases of military medals shared wall space with signs demanding "Ban soft money now!"   Local power politico Jodie Evans, the former campaign manager for Jerry Brown for President '92, promised that "the whole building will be a happening."   And speaker after speaker called for the American political landscape to be reshaped, again, so that the growing divide between ordinary people and the economically powerful does not threaten democracy.   Audiences exploded into applause at the mention of names shrouded in the mystique of the civil rights era, such as Selma, Ala., or by invocations of leaders of social justice movements, such as Nelson Mandela. Politicians such as Antonio Villaraigosa and Jesse Jackson Jr. called on their own party to return to the days when the Democrats represented the common man.   What people are hungering for, several attendees said, is some tangible connection with the political parties, which seem increasingly distant and impersonal.   The mutinous mood was mirrored back at attendees by the biggest collection of political slogans this side of UC Berkeley's Sproul Plaza. "We can only vote every four years. Money votes every day," read one sign.   The protest signs intermingled with floor after floor of military paraphernalia: Mannequins dressed in Revolutionary War get-ups, complete with fife and drum, were mingled with bright red signs demanding that Americans "Wake up! To the budget deficit."   State assemblyman and Los Angeles mayoral hopeful Villaraigosa said: "We need to say if people don't have health care, that's immoral. We've got to create an America where the American dream is for all of us--not some of us."   Attendees touted appearances by Warren Beatty and other celebrities, but few seemed to be awaiting them.   Dan Johnson-Weinberger, 25, said he was more excited about seeing former presidential hopeful Gary Hart and Green Party candidate for California senator Medea Benjamin.   Then, shortly after 8:30, dozens of police officers in full riot gear cleared the auditorium to follow up on what turned out to be an erroneous report of looting at the site.   The officers cordoned off Figueroa and found themselves staring into the faces of Vidal, noted journalist Christopher Hitchens and Shadow Convention co-founder Arianna Huffington.   As a police siren wailed, Vidal leaped onto a nearby satellite truck and told the crowd: "Offend them in no way at all and save your lives. I'll do my best to report from the front. It reminds me of Chicago in 1968."   Finally, even author Huffington manned the barricades. "I think we sent a clear message that we will not be silenced. And if they take us out of Patriotic Hall, we will take to the streets," she said. Published: August 15, 2000Source: Los Angeles Times (CA)Copyright: 2000 Los Angeles TimesContact: letters latimes.comAddress: Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles, CA 90053Fax: (213) 237-4712Website:  Related Articles & Web Sites:The Shadow Conventions Convention 2000 News Board DNC 2000 Protest News Board MapInc. Articles On The Shadow Conventions: CannabisNews Articles On The Shadow Conventions: 

Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help

Comment #4 posted by kaptinemo on August 16, 2000 at 04:43:26 PT:
America's political Potemkin Village
From InfoPlease:Potem'kin vil'lagea pretentiously showy or imposing façade intended to mask ordivert attention from an embarrassing or shabby fact or condition. In the old days of the Czars, shabby, run-down poverty- stricken villages would have false fronts with bright, freshly painted facades set up all along the Potemkin River to impress foreign guests. The guests would float down the river, and supposedly be impressed with all the happy people (dance or die!) enjoying their barbecue or whatnot (better not get too close to the BBQ pit, though; you might find out what they are eating is barely palatable) living in their beautiful, clean houses. Unless of course you got to peek behind the facade and saw what a rotten farce it was.The Dems and the Reps have both been guilty of playing this game. To stifle dissent and guarantee a false facade of homogeneity, they confiscate signs that might give the poor benighted American people the idea that everything is not hunky-dory in Amerika. Dissent has been intolerable; the Emperor not only is parading about in his birthday suit, but is armed as well, and will threaten anyone who dares to point out that not only is he naked, but he is also butt-ugly, and from the looks of him, is possibly suffering from a communicable disease.Ah, politics in Amerika; is it any wonder why so many people are investigating third parties?
[ Post Comment ]

Comment #3 posted by Natrous on August 15, 2000 at 19:48:05 PT
Even IN the Staples Center... 
This was on the ABCNEWS site...L O S  A N G E L E S, Aug. 15 — Supporters of former presidential candidate Bill Bradley are upset that Democratic Party officials confiscated hundreds of hand-painted signs made by volunteers for convention-goers at the Democratic National Convention.   They were taken only hours before Bradley was set to ascend to the podium inside the Staples Center to deliver his speech to the convention. Dozens of young, pro-Bradley volunteers had labored for the last week to make the signs in anticipation of the former New Jersey senator’s speech this evening. Official Props Only According to a senior Bradley adviser, convention officials here suddenly collected the signs this afternoon and told the Bradley camp that only signs sanctioned by the Democratic Party and made by official convention volunteers would be allowed onto the floor for delegates and others to wave.   No further explanation was offered to the Bradley camp or the dejected Bradley volunteers.   Convention planners did have a number of signs made for Bradley’s supporters to wave during his speech. According to the Bradley adviser, however, there were far fewer signs made than the Bradley camp had wanted and many more signs had been made for some of the night’s other prime-time speakers, such as Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy.   During the Republican National Convention in Philadelphia, a number of signs painted by volunteers with negative messages such as “No More Lies” did not make it onto the convention floor. According to one of the volunteers at the event, they were all given suggested phrases and asked by GOP officials to “keep it positive.” 
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #2 posted by dddd on August 15, 2000 at 17:29:51 PT


All this makes my old hippie blood boil....dddd
[ Post Comment ]


Comment #1 posted by FoM on August 15, 2000 at 15:32:49 PT

Live Streaming Audio of Todays Program in Progress

Live Streaming Audio of Today's Program in Progress: Tune In!Webcast requires RealPlayer 8.0 Basic*/realimpact/shadowconventions/live/la_live.rmThe Shadow Conventions Convention 2000 News Board DNC 2000 Protest News Board MapInc. Articles On The Shadow Conventions: CannabisNews Articles On The Shadow Conventions: 
[ Post Comment ]

  Post Comment

Name:       Optional Password: 
Comment:   [Please refrain from using profanity in your message]

Link URL: 
Link Title: