Protests At The DNC Could Easily Get Out Of Hand With This Many Groups Heading To Philly
With the Republican National Convention just the latest chaotic expression of the ideological rift in modern American society, all eyes are on the array of protests scheduled to take place during the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. At least from the preliminary lists of the planned demonstrations so far, it seems to be a sure thing that the protests at the DNC will definitely be making some noise.
Code Pink will be in attendance at the DNC. The group made a scene on July 19, when activists in the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio carried banners saying "No Racism, No Hate," and "Yes, We Can End War." The activists were surrounded by delegates and security officers while still capturing the attention of what remained of the crowd, and the television cameras, if only for a few moments. With the Democratic Party seemingly stretching the distinction of being a "big tent" party almost to the breaking point by nominating a presidential candidate who is not supported by a wide swath of its members, it is likely that Code Pink is hoping to make another prominent demonstration at the DNC.
A whole host of street marches and actions are planned for the week as well, even before the convention is gaveled into session. Occupy the Democratic Convention is planning a week of action, and separate marches coordinated by a diverse array of left-leaning groups will be happening concurrently. The Equality Coalition is organizing a march, with a total of 7,200 potential attendees, according to Facebook.
The Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign will be holding an event on Monday, the day the convention opens. They've decided to call it the "March for Our Lives," and it will reportedly focus on highlighting the unmet needs of this country's poor families, who are struggling to provide get by and plan for the future under the current economic regime.
Despite the amount of people who are planning on going out and exercising their First Amendment rights in Philadelphia, there will also be people on hand who will be there for the express purpose of diffusing any potential tensions, and providing safe spaces in which to relax and recharge during what is looking to be an extremely hot week, with forecasters saying temperatures could reach 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Groups like the Bernie Peace Keepers will be on hand to provide water, snacks, and a quiet place to rest, while another crowd-sourced affair will be happening at the FDR Skatepark, in what is being called "Neutral Ground Zero" or "The Bern Bash," depending on which version of their promotional materials you're reading.
While pretty much everyone is hoping that this year isn't a repeat of the contentious and bloody 1968 DNC in Chicago, which took place during the height of the Vietnam War, there is no denying that the extreme heat being forecast, as well as the depth of the ideological divide between the Sanders and the Clinton factions of the Democratic Party, could result in some pretty intense conflict, both inside the air-conditioned halls of the convention hall and outside it.