3 minute read

January 27, 2007, 5:29 PM

So the January 27, 2007 anti-war protest went quite well. I ran with the black bloc (no surprise there). The black bloc started out at Dupont Circle, and marched down Massachusetts Avenue to Scott Circle, to 15th Street, to N Street, to Thomas Circle, to Massachusetts Avenue again, to 12th Street, to M Street (or something thereabouts – I made notes with the camera), down Mt. Vernon Place past the front entrance of the DC Convention Center where an auto show was happening (speaking of wars over oil), and down 7th Street through Chinatown and down to the Mall. We ultimately crossed the Mall, and went up Independence Avenue SW to the Capitol.

We marched up to the west stairs (right side) and were denied access (as expected). We shouted, “GIVE US A TOUR! GIVE US A TOUR!” I loved it. After a little bit here, we marched around to the southeast side of the Capitol and repeated this. Then we marched back to the west front again, and then down to 3rd Street NW on the Mall, where things got dull for a bit. Then we again stormed the Capitol, going to the left side steps on the west front. Same result. Not surprised. Then we went back to 3rd again, and had a bit of a meeting. Black bloc quickly came to a rough consensus about where to go from there. They determined to go to a recruitment center downtown. 14th and K, if not mistaken. By that time, I was wearing down, and dropped out at 7th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue NW, which many of you may know as the location of Archives-Navy Mem’l station. My exact comment to myself was, “It’s been real, but I’m tired.” And I let the black bloc pass down the street.

Funny: After undoing all my black bloc finery, I spoke with a group carrying a black flag that had been in the black bloc. They didn’t recognize me. I was like, “wait a sec.” I took my glasses off again, put on the little hat, and held up a red bandanna. I said, “Recognize me now?” They’re like, “oh, yeah, I remember you!” Funny how people recognize you in an “anonymous” appearance. Black blocs are fun, though.

I also got what I call the “iconic” photo of the event, showing people marching towards the Capitol. Thus we had the march in the foreground, Capitol in the background. It was freakin’ awesome. And here’s an interesting comment: “Burninate the Capitol!” Some of you may recognize that term in relation to Trogdor. I loved it. Someone even described Trogdor as an anarchist. I guess so. Trogdor ignores all governmental authority and, “he just goes around burning things and doesn’t even care!” Either way, I loved the Trogdor reference.

Then after the march, I ran into my photographer friend from Night March and September 24 on the Metro. Turns out that he was the sole arrestee (!) from Night March. This time, he came out clean, though we didn’t photograph together this time, because he didn’t know about the black bloc meeting place. When I told him it was at Dupont Circle, he was just like, why didn’t I think of that? Dupont Circle seems to be the gathering place for anarchist marches. Of course, the black bloc march was announced at kind of the last minute on Indymedia. So it’s understandable. SDS was the one that called the black bloc march.

I also spent all three of Big Mavica’s batteries before 5:00. So my time with Big Mavica for today is now over. Any further photos today will be taken with the cell phone.

Anyway, I just thought I’d write a little update for you about the protest. Once I take a look at all the photos, I’m going to write a full narrative for Life and Times, and that will ultimately become a photo set. Protests generally go to the front of the queue, so it ought not be too long. I’m embarrassed about how long I’ve been on a few other sets.

Web site: CNN: Fonda, Sarandon among Iraq war protesters

Song: The beats on the various improvised drums at the protest...

Quote: Meanwhile, I got two calls during the protest, both from Mom. With all the other sound going on, I totally did not hear those chime in, and only saw the phone show me evidence of a call happening later.

Categories: Anti-war, Black bloc