Thursday, January 22, 2015

It’s That Time of Year

As I sit here, there is loud, heartfelt singing penetrating the closed windows of my sixth-floor office. The 29th Alaska Legislature has just convened, which means one thing that all denizens of Juneau will understand: protests and/or speeches and/or singing every single day from 12 noon-1:00 p.m.

Almost every day at this time while the Legislature is in session, the streets in front of the Capitol Building are cordoned off and buttressed by law enforcement so that people can exercise their First Amendment rights on all manner of issues from education funding to abortion to international amnesty to other problems the Alaska Legislature can’t and/or probably won’t do anything about.

I'm a firm believer in civil unrest and demonstrations, and as wise men have said, the arc of the moral universe is long and bends toward justice. But nowhere on that arc—I don’t think—has there ever been an amateur Dwight Yoakam impersonator crooning and wailing to an audience of fifteen people shifting awkwardly from foot to foot in the pouring rain. In short, I'm fairly certain that no cause--however worthy--was ever furthered by free hot dogs; a banner printed by Alaska Litho, LLC; rubber bracelets; and a painful Joan Baez cover. 


[Side Bar: I knew my generation was fucked for sure when a guy sitting next to me in my first year law school contracts class saw a photo of Joan Baez and Bob Dylan on my lap top wallpaper, and asked me in all seriousness, "Are those your parents?"]

I won't share my personal views on any of the controversial issues of the day, but I will share that I wish I could open up the windows, wave a flag, make the devil horns with my right hand, and yell out:


"FREE BIRD!!"

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