los angeles

E-mail: worldcantwait_la@yahoo.com
Phone: 866.973.4463



Fifty-three years after the U.S. dropped the first atomic bomb on a civilian population, a group of twenty from the LA area converged on Union Station to "freeze" against an attack on Iran.  Leading up to the planned meeting time, orange began to emerge through the station, with activists wearing ribbons and t-shirts getting out flagging-tape orange ribbons to bystanders eager to take up the color of resistance.

One of the participants brought his only orange t-shirt that featured Mickey Mouse, but he turned it inside out and it worked just fine. As people joined the group, preparing to initiate the "freeze," we learned that a number of the people heard came to the action from outlying areas, taking public transportation to get to Union Station.

One young artist was so inspired by World Can't Wait plans--and determination--that she had placed flyers advertising the "freeze" at the opening night of her show in an art gallery where she was exhibiting. Her artwork included an Abu Ghraib figure draped in an American flag, standing on a crate that held mortar shells used in Iraq...the figure being a mannequin that had been remade as a working electric guitar, which gave off the sound of distorted, muffled screams when played. She wanted other people to get involved, and she made the hour-long trip to the station out of excitement and a sense of responsibility that she should be part of the larger "us" that can bring this to a halt.

As more people gathered, we talked to commuters and travelers, spread flyers and orange, and pinned on signs with "No Attack On Iran!  worldcantwait.org."  One protester gave an interview to the local Spanish language Telemundo affiliate.  Soon, the crowd spread through the station, and at the sound of a train whistle just after 5 o'clock, we froze.  A camera from KCAL9 a local news station, aired the scene live on their 6 p.m. news program, with commuters streaming past the frozen protesters, taking flyers from their hand, speaking their agreement and appreciation.  At the sound of the whistle five minutes later, the crowd unfroze, and started to chant, "Hiroshima, Never Again!  Don't Bomb Iran!  Don't Bomb Iran!"  Although not many bystanders took up the chant, some nodded or clapped in agreement.  While the shouting was going on, we handed our flyers on the freeze, inviting people to a Saturday morning screening of Iran (is not the problem).

The protest continued outside the station, as people marched down Alameda St. towards the 101 freeway overpass.  Under heavy police "escort," demonstrators carried banners against an attack on Iran across the overpass and past the Metro Detention Center, where those rounded up in area ICE raids are held. We heard shouts coming from the detention center as the people locked inside caught sight of our orange group marching across the street

That night on the 11:00 p.m. Telemundo Spanish language news, a local organizer was an invited guest commentator for a segment on the significance of Hiroshima and the current situation facing Iran today. The station had reached out to World Can't Wait as the producer had heard of the planned August 6th actions on Saturday's August 2nd Stop the War Action, visited the website and had seen the ever popular Grand Central Freeze video on youtube.