What Do You Want? When Do You Want It?

I’ve been trying to figure out why I go to protests. Do I think they’re going to change anything? Unseat a president? Stop a war? Change a law?

There were over four thousand of us packed together in a hollow of the city, Boston skyscrapers framing our tiny antics. The City Hall Plaza is an interesting place to be for its paradoxes — you are dwarfed by its architecture, a concrete upside-down pyramid that gets wider as you look up, like a broad-shouldered thug. It’s hideous, imposing, the kind of building that would house Big Brother. But it’s also in the middle of downtown, so that you are surrounded on all sides by other, taller buildings, which despite their superior height manage to lurk as City Hall’s toadies — and there is a feeling of empowerment inherent to placing yourself in the middle of anything.

Boston City Hall is The Boss. You have come here for The Final Fight.

The cynic in me says protests are nothing but a party for like-minded people. But in a space like that, when you all cry “equal rights, now” your voices bounce off all the surrounding glass reaching into the sky and meld into one, giant voice, and that’s you, you can feel it, shaking an entire city. (View the full album here.)

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  1. Great pictures! I protested in Raleigh. It was a much smaller turnout that Boston, but it was still nice that there was a decent turnout at all; maybe 200 people. And it was pouring rain, but we marched anyway, and cars honked and we cheered and it was exciting.

  2. Lots of Democratic office holders sent representatives to the march in Minneapolis. It keeps the issue alive and bubbling, which is important between fights (bet on a Repeal 8 initiative in 2010). THEY’VE won this round, which means they want to stop fighting and let the issue rest. Protests let everyone know that it isn’t over.

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