Friday, August 8, 2008

Protesters to 'Raise the Roof' at Democratic Convention

Last March, Glenn Spagnuolo, of the radical recreate 68 protest coaltion, threatened Denver's Democratic Convention planners, saying, "When things blow up because the police have to enforce a permit that the Democrats got, don’t blame us for that..."

Now with the convention quickly approaching,
Democratic Party officials are working ferverishly to avoid conflict inside the halls of the meeting. Meanwhile, outside the convention, recreate 68 is hoping to "raise the roof" on the U.S Mint in Denver:

Convention protesters plan to raise the roof - and the rest of the United States Mint in Denver - later this month when the party convenes in Denver to nominate Sen. Barack Obama as its candidate for president.

Organizers of Recreate 68, which is affiliated with at least a dozen protest groups mobilizing for the DNC later this month, are planning to attempt a levitation of the U.S. Mint as a statement against the money being spent on the convention which activists feel would better be spent on the poor.

"It's time to redistribute the wealth," reads a statement at the Web site.

"Between security and corporate payoffs, the DNC will cost over 100 million dollars for a party. We think the people deserve that money."

The statement goes on to say, "Join us as we encircle the Denver Mint...and use our collective power to raise the Mint building in the air and shake the money out of it for the people."

The attempted levitation is set for 5 p.m. Aug. 25, the first full day of the four-day convention....

The planned raising of the Mint is not without precedent. Thousands of anti-war protesters during the Vietnam conflict, on Oct. 21, 1967, massed at the Pentagon and, under the anarchic leadership of Yuppies including Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin and the poet Allen Ginsberg, attempted to levitate the nerve center of the American military in an effort "exorcise" the evil spirits they believed controlled it.

No reported levitation was observed by sober onlookers. But there was sporadic violence when some of the protesters managed briefly to get inside the facility, and there were a reported 680 arrests and some blood spilled before it was over.
The dates of the convention mark the anniversaries of Women's Equality Day and Martin Luther Luther King's "I Have a Dream Speech."

It's also the 41st anniversary of the "
Long Hot Summer" of deadly urban rioting across the nation, and the 40th anniversary of the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert F. Kennedy, which culimnated in the violent police crackdown at the Chicago Democratic Convention of 1968.

Let's hope this year protesters are satisfied with hippy-style levitiation.