Thursday, October 15, 2009


Maybe I'm just jaded, but it seems like every protest (no matter what the subject) basically involves a conglomeration of crazy people. Probably because for the most part, it takes the fiery heart of a radical to stand out in the rain and yell fruitlessly. And radicals aren't known for their careful, sober grasp of issues.

My bus home from the law school today was rerouted because of a protest. All I could see from the window was that it was Israel/Palestine related. I was tempted to walk back and interview folks for the blog to see what the protest was about, but it was raining and I figured I'd just find it depressing. It looks like the protest is over a speech being delivered by Ehud Olmert at the Harris School (there were pro-Israel counterprotesters as well).

The protest is "endorsed by":
Al-Awda, American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC)-Chicago, American Muslims for Palestine (AMP), Arab Student Union at Moraine Valley, International Jewish Anti-Zionist Network (IJAN), International Solidarity Movement (ISM), Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP)-Chicago, Palestine Solidarity Group (PSG), Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) at DePaul & UIC, respectively, and United States Palestine Community Network (USPCN)

Obviously, I don't know about all of these groups, but my curiosity was piqued, because I'm always curious as to the pleasure centers of active pro-Israel and pro-Palestine groups. And now I know that American Muslims for Palestine* wants the US to investigate the allegations of the Swedish blood libel article. So at least this was educational for me in that sense.

* It was the second relevant google hit when I searched for "palestine protest university of chicago". The first was this site, which seems to be an opinion aggregator and not a sponsor. It does lovingly feature Gilad Atzmon on the front page (and calls Zionism "the highest stage of imperialism"), but I can't necessarily blame the organizers for who promotes them.


Rebecca said...

Ehud Olmert? I might want to protest him too, but not in the company of any of those groups. The man led Israel into two disastrous wars, plus he's under indictment for corruption. It does strike me as odd that King Abdullah of Jordan paid for his visit.

David Schraub said...

I wouldn't protest him. I'd just not attend. Which I didn't, albeit because I didn't know he was speaking until I saw the protest.

Matthew C said...

I don't know. I think I could make a pretty nice compilation out of the Debate Link posts that add up to "X happened and I condemn X in the strongest language possible!" or "Y are thugs and have no place in democracy!" So you've got some Abe Simpson in you, even if you don't like to take him out in public. But this could speak to agoraphobia as much as to careful, sober grasp of issues.