NATO Summit: The Power Will Be In The Street

NATO Summit: The Power Will Be In The Street

The NATO Chicago Summit is about to begin and with it there is a sense that protestors will be coming out in force to show their dismay for the continued proliferation of America and her allies dictating their will upon the world. Things, it seems, haven't changed much from the turbulent 1960's when it comes to the free world governments thumbing their collective noses towards its citizenry and their well-being. The world limps along in a constant state of strife despite the fact that we should have learned something from the people who have continually braved authorities grip to demand change.

But change never comes - does it? Promises and lies and then more promises and lies have been the status quo while the hawks look to profit from yet another conflict somewhere, anywhere in the world, at the expense of the victims left behind. It is a tale that is too often repeated, going on unabated. The military complex continues to grow and profit while the people must suffer the consequences of that pursuit.

Now the powers that be will all come to Chicago to discuss newer and even more ingenious ways to maintain their stranglehold grip upon the world. Vast sums of money will be promised to ensure that democracy will be installed somewhere. Meanwhile those doing the offering will tell their own people that they will have to cut back, expect less from the taxes they pay and ultimately accept austerity programs.

I don't know about you folks, but something sure sounds out of kilter here.

Sadly, the world today is no more safer than it was in the past. As a matter of fact, the world is an even more dangerous place than ever before! As a result there will again be protests in the streets and some will view them as counter-productive and oppose them. Naturally that is their right of opinion to feel that way, but as I see it protests are the only way to deliver a message by the 99% who have grown tired of the status quo.

Some will stick to the notion that change can only be forced strictly at the ballot box, unfortunately that is a myth. The status quo exists by creating deep divisions among the populace with the use of never-ending rhetoric and negative campaigning designed to further confuse the sensibilities of potential voters. And in many ways they have won that battle given the plurality seen election after election.

As such, I am convinced that those promoting the Days of Rage Protests during the 60's were right when they used the phrase "The Elections Don't Mean Shit—Vote Where the Power Is—Our Power Is In The Street." As we know, up until now the City of Chicago and Rahm Emanuel have done everything in their power to deny protestors the right to protest lawfully during the NATO Summit, but I hold out hope that they have discussed the inevitable - people will none the less still be in the streets voicing their opinions.

After all, it is their right.

Hopefully Rahm Emanual has instructed his charges that it would be unwise to interfere with non-violent protestors in the event they stray from designated areas. That would only incite a group that already feels as if they have been played with throughout the process of planning. Let's face it, the last thing Chicago needs is for violence to erupt, but given the history of similar events held in the city, I can't help seeing someone on either side screwing up the works and that this summit will somehow end very badly for all concerned.

I hope not, but I do know one thing; just as during the 1968 Democratic Convention

- the "Whole World Will Be Watching."

This Time In Real Time And In Color Worldwide!

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  • At the moment, this also appears to be some people exercising their First Amendment right to be stupid.

    We have the story today about the Catholic Labor against capitalism, but the last I heard, Jesus doesn't provide, and not even Pat Quinn can afford to.

    Then one of them was on the radio. She said that she was protesting because the U.S. was the most totalitarian country in the world. "Have you been in another country?" "Afghanistan." "Well what about the Taliban/" "NATO and the U.S. are killing them now." At which point I hit the button for the next preset.

    As far as Emanuel, apparently he is giving out parade permits, but the protesters, again protesting more about their First Amendment rights than the substance of anything, aren't happy with where they can congregate, and don't get press if they conform to the permits. Look at the CTA site (transitchicago.com) about all the street closings and bus reroutes for "public gatherings."

    Finally, while the 1968 whatevers made Daley and Judge Julius Hoffman look like fools, and maybe got Nixon elected (which I'm sure was not their intent), as far as permanent change, no. I agree that working in the system doesn't work, but this, including I'm sure, the rioters who always attend these events, isn't going to work either.

  • In reply to jack:

    In the final analysis you are probably right Jack.

    As for Rahm, yes he has given permits out but it has not been without constricts for the protestors and need we say, residents alike? I find it amusing that people in power have a need to shut down dissent at all costs, even if that dissent is constructive. But you are right that there will also be an element of loonies who congregate at the events just to be there and cause trouble - then again, no different than a political convention or two if my recollections are correct.

    The system is so "remarkably broken" that somehow it works just the same, unfortunately it works to preserve the status quo and that is why i do not outright reject whatever protests occur - even with the nut balls that will make it their soapbox.

    In the end, public protests are all the people have left - good or bad.

  • In reply to Michael Ciric:

    It may be all that we have left.

    However, it seems like their only point is to find some way to get on the news, which, unfortunately is either that they got on the news by trespassing or complaining about the conditions of the permit, or that there is a list of everything that will be shut down Monday. Good luck to those who ride the South Shore, but probably the Central Business District will de facto be closed on Monday.

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