Sunday, March 25, 2018

Love Not Guns

Danny, Tony, and Dayala joined me at San Francisco's Civic Center on Saturday afternoon for the gun control March for Our Lives.

Unfortunately, I had foolishly misread the times for the speechifying (1 PM) and the actual start of the march (2:30 PM), which meant we were early, so we fled soon after Senator Dianne Feinstein was introduced onstage and she mentioned how good it was to see so many young people. ("Yeah, it would be nice if you would step aside and let somebody younger have a chance to be elected," someone was heard to mutter.)

We took a Muni train to the Embarcadero waterfront for a beer where we encountered a "pop-up drag queen" dressed as Lady Liberty who was preparing herself for the arrival of the march.

It was fun walking up an empty Market Street without worrying about being run over by bikes and cars.

The hundreds of marches across the country were being led by teenagers in many cases, and a bossy old woman organizer admonished us to not hang out at the beginning of the march because it was "youth to the front."

This struck as hilariously insulting. We did notice that the crowd skewed older than photos from other locations across the country, partly because the city is too expensive for most families to live. Plus, there were local, suburban marches held simultaneously around the Bay Area.

One of the more poignant contingents was an alumni group from Marjory Stoneman Douglas, site of the latest school massacre.

Who knew so many Floridians ended up in the Bay Area?

Like just about every other non-violent protest march in San Francisco, the SF Police Department was grotesquely over-represented and armed to the gills.

It made for a strange juxtaposition with the day's message.


janinsanfran said...

Gosh -- missed Feinstein!! That's always okay by me. Yet weirdly, compared to most of those dorks, she has actually seen gun violence.

Did hear one short and succinct speech: Grace Slick -- "Yeah, we rose up in the 60s. Today: same shit; different assholes." Covered it nicely.

The Bay does suffer from an oversupply of too many people who have had too much experience as protest monitors and have gotten into it. I think I met the same one you did.

janinsanfran said...

Correction, according to the Washington Post. That speech I liked: “No, I am not Grace Slick,” Richardson said. “But as we stand up here, I’m reminded of another youth movement that took place in San Francisco … Here we are 50 years later. Same sh-t. New a--holes.”

Civic Center said...

Dear Jan: Thanks for that great quote, and I am glad I didn't miss out on the divine Grace Slick in person. And I am completely amused by your "protest monitor" comment.