One of the interesting things about my job is its proximity to the White House. It's a few minutes' walk, which makes for some great, paranoia-laden thrill rides during lunch.
Today's walk yielded some good action in the form of a protest-and-arrest session of AIDS activists. The Post estimates about 150 people were involved, but it looked to me like a big chunk of those must've been media people and camera-toting thrill-seekers like myself. These folks obviously know how to pimp a good press release.
There was the typical fleet of cops walking around with weapons and sneers. Four of them pranced around on vicious, snarling, beastly war-horses (hell, I'm a city kid. All horses look like this). Other cops paced in their jackboots like wolves, praying for a riot to allow the "fog of war" to rain down on these hippy bastards until none survived and Lafayette Park was awash in a tide of blood and despair.
And yet the cop that freaked me out the most was the one with the video camera, filming the protesters. Filming the bystanders. Filming the camera-toting thrill-seekers like myself, who couldn't resist photographing the video cop in some twisted attempt at justice...
Do these people have some kind of archive of protest and street footage, with face-mapping technology index-linking everyone to their Secret Government Profile, meta-tagged with potential Thought-Crimes Against the State?
Jeezus, coppers, calm down. These folks just want to keep AIDS research a priority on the national scene; that's understandable. But ambushing the White House seems like an waste of good media attention... I just can't see how Mr and Mrs America will "get it" if any of the footage even makes it to the Evening News. Using the Zaphod Beeblebrox scoring system, I'd give the protest 15 points for style, but minus 150 for true effectiveness. But then, how could it be more effective?
I mean... Evidently this administration can't even spell "AIDS" and it certainly can't be bothered with anything that doesn't involve killing brown people worldwide.
So it was an interesting lunch-break. Just be careful. Those goons are stealing souls out there.