We're over one week into another useless war. The nightmares are piling up. As Baby Bush, Blair and their buddies scramble to explain more blood in the sand, we at NOW join you in considering ways to wage peace. This war has to end. We all have a responsibility to help make that happen. For some, that may mean marching. For others, calling an MP or writing a letter. Invent something. People do stop wars, and together we can make a difference.
Spring is on our side
spring fever doesn't know anything about war.
Outdoors, every breath is a smile. The world unbundled is a paradise of promise. Everywhere, invisible new life is quivering against the naked skin of the growing season. It feels great to be alive.
Indoors is where the war is raging.
Almost every room is fitted with the electronic capacity to take you into combat. Even turned off, the things buzz with the possibility of tuning in. There's a craving to consume the news that feels almost pornographic. By week two, we know there will be no quick end.
Outdoors heaven. Indoors human-handed hell. Two planes of existence are getting acquainted inside my veins and tissues. I am so tired and achy from the tug that it was hard to make the demo last Saturday.
But with a little help from my friends, I drag my butt to the U.S. consulate. And lo and behold, once I get there, a strange thing happens. I start to feel good. This is not what I expected.
Demos usually make me grumpy. I find it depersonalizing to be part of a throng, no matter how right-minded the cause. Often I'm frustrated, thinking about how important for movement-building it is to redeem the personal experience of marching by integrating creativity and community-building. These are not yet strong points of Toronto's protest culture, though this weekend's Toronto Social Forum is a hopeful step in the right direction.
Today, though, nothing matters but the beauty of walking in this striking diversity. Every part of international Toronto is represented. And we know others around the world are marching with us. No rock-throwers are diverting the group energy, and yet the media are watching. My two worlds have stopped colliding.
It's a day that will last longer than the night, and I am outdoors, enveloped in the damp of spring. And here, on the road, the war isn't being broadcast to me, to us. We are broadcasting at it.
Moments like these are rare gifts. I recommend the experience, which is available again this weekend.
The anti-war movement has a lot going against it. As time goes by, it's not going to be easy. To keep growing, we need to figure out other ways to make our gatherings energizing and rewarding.
But right now, don't miss the power that comes from just having the season on our side.
March 27 -- Hidden Wars Of Desert Storm, video screening, 6:30 pm, University College, 15 King's College. -- Global Justice And Anti-War, panel discussion, 7 pm, OISE, 252 Bloor West.
March 28 -- Artists Against Empire, 8 pm, Music Hall, 147 Danforth.
March 29 -- Artists gather at the Royal Ontario Museum, 100 Queen's Park, in the Mesopotamian and Islamic collection to hold a "Draw In' protesting the war, 1 to 5 pm.
March 30 -- A World Without War Is Possible, march, conclusion of the Toronto Social Forum, 2 pm, Victoria and Gould. -- Multi-faith peace vigil, prayer and song, 4:30 pm, Holy Trinity Church (beside Eaton Centre).
March 31 -- Women Take Action, panel, 7 pm, 252 Bloor West.