Thursday, March 27, 2003

I started to post on this the day before yesterday, but blogger was acting up and for some reason the link went screwy and messed up the post.

I drive past the Chicago Loop every day. I remember immediately after 9/11 the way the building lights burned red, white, and blue in the patriotic fervor that spread across the country. At the time I thought to myself, "Okay. Not something I would do, but I guess I understand." Over time I watched the lights go back to normal and the flags that hung everywhere droop, fade, and eventually disappear.

What I find interesting now at this time of war is how that patriotic fervor has changed. The lights downtown aren't burning red, white, and blue, I think out of respect to the majority position of Chicago. residents. At the same time, I have seen some people break out the flags, and not the itty bitty tear-up-at-the-first-gust of wind flags, but giant defiant flags.

It's surreal how the city--hell the country--is so obviously divided that we can visibly see where people fall on the war issue. Read on

Peace-oriented merchandise, meanwhile, is seeing a resurgence of its own, sellers say.

Dave Wampler, owner of the Simple Living Network in Trout Lake, Wash., said he can't stock enough items with peace symbols, flags of the Earth and similar merchandise.

"It says to me that people are concerned, and for many people the American Dream has become somewhat of a nightmare," he said. "They're trying to find ways to speak out and say there are alternatives."

Global Vision for Peace, a group that organized two months ago to use the Oscars as a platform to send a message of peace, commissioned a pin that emulated artist Pablo Picasso's Dove of Peace.

Pins worn by some actors at Sunday's 75th annual Academy Awards are now being auctioned on eBay, and more than 1,000 pins have been ordered, Global Vision co-founder Cliff Rothman said.

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