Stupid High School Kids
The ever-entertaining Glenn Reynolds, never one to pass up a chance to smear Anti-War folk through implication, directs us to an article about an anti-war demonstration by high school students in California that got a bit out of hand. Apparently, some of the 500 students present decided that it would be fun to knock over a gas station during the festivities.
Obviously, this is a Bad Thing. But I really resent Reynolds' "THUGS FOR PEACE" headline and his sly "Protesting for imaginary Arabs, while robbing real ones. Yep." Why? Because it has the unmistakable air of an "I told you so." This one is going to get a lot of traction from the anti-anti-war crowd, because it seems to confirm everything they've been saying about anti-war hooligans and hippies.
Goddamn those violent Peace marchers!
What no one is going to point out is the simple fact that when you put 500 teenaged kids anywhere without a shitload of supervision, something's gonna go down. It's just the way it works. It has nothing to do with the anti-war or pro-war causes and everything to do with a bunch of kids with all kinds of hormones gathered in one place. Hell, it's pretty much a given that a crowd of 20 teenage males will eventually become violent to one degree or another. It's the way us guys are wired (or raised...but that's a seperate issue entirely).
And, hey, let's not even cast aspersions on teenagers in general (whoops...already did. Oh well). Let's extend this to all of the Peace rallies that have been taking place over the past few weeks. In the aftermath of the worldwide protests two weeks ago, a lot of the anti-anti-war crowd crowed long and loud about people throwing things at the cops in San Francisco and a couple minor scuffles that took place elsewhere.
Well, so fucking what?
In any sizable group of people, no matter what the defining characteristic of the group is, there is a statistical certainty that a few of them are going to be scumbags. This applies to the (extremely isolated) incidences of violence in the worldwide rallies. I don't care if your group is a bunch of peace protestors, attendees at a Metallica concert, or the crowd at Easter Mass at the Vatican. Some of them are assholes and will get rowdy given opportunity and a lack of supervision. It is either foolhardy, dishonest, or both to imply that the imbecilic actions of a few people within the group should discredit the motives of the group as a whole.
Besides, shit that's a whole lot worse goes down every year at your typical big-city St. Patrick's Day parade. Does this mean we should kick the Irish out of the country (sit down, Mr. Savage, I wasn't asking you)?
Shame on Glenn Reynolds. Shame, humiliation, and dishonor.