If you want to be on television in America, there are two ways that are absolutely foolproof. The first way is to initiate a car chase. If the police are chasing you and the helicopter is equipped with a camera, you will be on TV. The second way is to come to Crawford and protest the protest. This is a better way. This way you can share your thoughts. All your thoughts. With everyone.
If you are the only person there who hates Cindy Sheehan, your thoughts are particularly compelling. You have a certain irresistible....gravitas. You may unpack your soul to the national media. They want to hear your thoughts. You are representative of - something - some kind of unfussy, heartland wisdom, and your ravings are actually the simple patriotic patois of the average decent American.
This is of course, total, unscented merde, but that doesn't fit the narrative.
Today, I parked about a quarter of a mile from the port-a-pots. I stopped at the Laura Bush Letter Table where I was invited to write a letter to Laura Bush to be hand delivered by a delegation later in the afternoon. There were three choice of paper - hot pink, red white & blue, and blue sky with white puffy clouds. I pretended to need some privacy to compose my thoughts, stole some pink paper to take notes on (I lost my notebook again), and walked over to the food tent to get a Diet Coke. The endless buffet of animal crackers, power bars, and fruit baskets seemed unappealing. The PETA guys are still grilling veggie ribs, but I don't see how anybody can eat in this heat.
In between her interviews, I talked with Nadia McCaffrey from Sacramento. Her son, Sergeant Patrick Ryan McCaffrey, was killed in Iraq. She was very subdued. Everyone up here who has lost someone is uniformly subdued. Sometimes you have to lean all the way in to hear them speak and it feels almost like a violation to be that close. She has shoulder length, blond hair and she was wearing jeans and a long, black tunic, a button that said, "Moms Against the War", and a metal bracelet. Her son's buddies made it for her back at Camp Anaconda in Iraq. They all wear them.
On the way out of Crawford, I stopped at Peace House, which is actually located in town on the other side of the railroad tracks from the Yellow Rose. It's a happy little hive of activity; everyone is part of the big machine of protest. They are making sandwiches, talking on cell phones, typing on computers, having sotto voce meetings with the door half ajar. On the wall, next to the table with the bumper stickers, the flyers and the blue wristbands that say, "Freedom begins at home" was this: