los angeles

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


Los Angeles - Orange Alert - November 16th

Photo: Stanley Newton

LA had a small, but very spirited event on Hollywood Blvd... converging at the Armed Forces Career Center at 3pm.  Reports from students and teachers were that many students from a nearby high school were wearing orange at school that day.  A few WCW'ers had been there Thursday and Friday, getting out stacks of flyers and rolls of orange flagging tape, which the youth took up and spread inside the school.  One student, who's been wearing his green WCW button on his backpack every day since he got it, played a key role in creating a buzz inside.  When school let out, some students marched and chanted from their school and all along the blvd. They were joined by two of their teachers, one of whom had announced the Orange Alert and encouraged her students to wear orange. Some students from Dennis Loo's classes joined us, as did a WCW student organizer from a community college.

Dressed in orange jumpsuits, students took up the bullhorns at the Career center, and enthusiastically led their favorite chants: "I'm not your soldier!  No Sir! Sir No SIr!"; "We support the soldiers who refuse to fight! Cuz fightin' for empire just ain't right!"; "Iraq ! Get Out! Iran! Stay Out! Bush and Cheney, drive them out!" Others accompanied with drums and noisemakers. A chant some youth made up on the spot was "the nuclear bomb! bush is about to drop it! Don't bomb Iran! We're the ones to stop it!" The recruiters at the center ran inside and shut the doors.

Photo: Stanley Newton

We wrapped the front entrance to the Career Center in crime scene tape, and carried a new banner that read "No War on Iran!", made by an organizer's professional sign-maker friend.  We stood in front and agitated, holding posters up with pictures of everyday Iranians. "These people are alive right now in Iran. They are children who go to school...just like ours...mothers and fathers...just like ours...grandmothers and grandfathers...just like ours. What are you gonna do to make sure they stay alive? You call this a career center? There is no future in murder and death! There is no future in war crimes! War crimes! War Crimes! We took off down the blvd with banners, chanting as we went. About 30 people participated, half of whom were youth, some international forces (Iranian, Latino, and Turkish), and some older-in-age, but young-in-spirit folks. We stopped in front of the famous ChineseTheatre where there was a crowd, and made a semi-circle with banners, wearing orange light stick necklaces 'cause the evening was upon us. A youth led us in reading the pledge in unison. While we got many signals of support, peace signs flashed, fists raised, none of the folks we met along the way joined us in our march. We called out to them to join us as we spread orange tape and they took that, as well as pledge flyers.

Photo: Stanley Newton

We marched a bit further and staged a die in on the blvd.; bullhorn sirens wailed as we threw glitter up in the air to symbolize nuclear fallout, and people fell to the sidewalk. As people lay there we talked about how this symbolizes the daily reality for the people of Iraq, and that it is our responsibility to stop that war, and stop an attack on Iran. On count we rose up for the people of the world, chanting "People rise up! Bush stepdown!"

As we headed home, beginning plans were made with students to build the powerful student movement that is needed, the seeds of which were seen by the broad participation of many they hadn't thought were interested.