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Green Fun in Nassau 3/14/06

by Kimberly Wilder

 merrick 013.jpg

 

From left to right: Green Party Senate contender Sander Hicks, Green Party Congressional candidate Jim Brown, Green Party Lt. Governor contender Kimberly Wilder, & GPNYS Executive Committee member Ron Kuriloff
 

Oh…my…goodness…

The Nassau/Suffolk, Region One Greens, all just had the greatest night.

Sander Hicks, one of the GPNYS Senate candidate hopefuls, and Jim Brown, the Green Party congressional candidate in the 3rd District, were invited to speak at the Merrick-Bellmore Democratic Club forum on March 14, 2006.

The topic was, “War in Iraq Forum.”

Summary: Sander Hicks and Jim Brown knocked their socks off. There were a couple of Democrats there who had recently been saying they might switch to green. The integrity of Sander and Jim, their positions, and their excellent presentations closed the deal! It was awesome.

One thing was that the presenter had reached out to try to find people to speak on both sides. He even called the branches of the military. No one said yes they would come.

An Iraqi War Veteran was scheduled to come and was on the bill. Though, that person did not attend.

Though, a man from the audience, who said he was an Iraqi War veteran and a Bellmore resident, asked to speak. He was a Colonel. His speech was about how things really are in Iraq. He told how it was a myth that soldiers did not have enough equipment. He asserted that every single soldier went over with a vest. And, that later the vests were even upgraded.*

After the Colonel spoke, Sander spoke. It was an effective speech that people complimented highly afterwards. It tied a need to understand 9-11 with a need to understand the war, and admit this was a war of aggression.

merrick 003.jpgAn audience member asked Sander a question. The Colonel, from his seat, interjected disagreeably. Sander let the Colonel speak once, but it became an argument with the Colonel and the audience member. So, Sander pointed out that it was Sander’s turn to speak. And, when the Colonel asserted something about a soldier’s duty, Sander made an impassioned speech about how since the war was unconstitutional and violated the Geneva Convention and other international treaties which the Constitution says are the highest law of the land, that the soldiers had a duty to resist.

At some point, with Sander’s words and arguments winning, a man (who may have been with the group that was pro-war and escorted the Colonel) stood up, took one of Sander’s 9-11 books, tore it in half and threw it at Sander.

It was awesome!!

Sander was flabbergasted and calmly said he never saw anyone destroy one of his books before.

I tried to offer Sander some support and get him back on track by shouting out, “It’s an honor.”

Sander regained his composure and continued his presentation with the encouragement and support of most of the room and the host.

Very impressive!! Very exciting!!**

At one point, Nassau County Legislator Dave Denenberg–the Democrat who will probably run against Peter King (and Jim Brown) for Congress– spoke. It was a horrible speech. It was a war-mongering speech. Denenberg actually said that the Iraq War made sense at the start, but it is just foolish and costly now. Denenberg actually said that 9-11 changed everything, and that Americans have to think differently about security. Denenberg compared our situation matter-of-factly to that of Israel, that like Israel, we have to be more firm against terrorism. Denenberg suggested that it was logical that Americans would expect that since 9-11 happened, we would all have to copy some of the policies of Israel in dealing with terrorism. (Remember, he is the Democrat.)

I stood up and turned my back on Dave Denenberg. I stood there for about 20 minutes in total while he said idiotic, war-mongering things. Denenberg actually started talking about Iran, in a way that a non-green audience member pointed out mimicked the Bush rhetoric that would probably take us to war with Iran. Sander’s wife Holley Anderson joined my protest. So, we both stood there with our backs to Denenberg.

Really, it was an awesome night.

                                 merrick 005.jpg

Jim Brown spoke, though it was really late in the night. Still, he was boldly against the war and was so articulate and engaging, that many people asked him questions. People were impressed.

                                    merrick 009.jpg

And, then, Holley, announcing herself as “Holley-Go-Anarchy” and a mom, played a passionate, driving, lovely song on guitar about how the war is a way for the ruling class to divide us. And, I was never so happy to be a green!

We rocked the joint!

We recruited new greens!

Nassau County, where this all happened, is Kuriloff territory and Gayle and Jim Brown territory. They have laid the groundwork through years of working with these progressive Dems, through years of shared projects and demonstrations. One of the organizers went on and on about how he wanted to be sure that the Greens and Dems worked together, that he has great plans for some joint projects for peace. And, you know what, I think we are ready to take a lot of those progressive Dems to our side.

And, no one could thank Jim Brown, Sander, and Holley enough for closing the deal for the Greens on an awesome, magical, political night!

The Greens rock!

~  ~  ~   ~  

*the Colonel’s speech

The Colonel acted as if he was speaking out of his own interest in the topic. Then, he described in detail his efficient and noble work, in charge of all the prisons for Iraqi soldiers south of Baghdad. The Colonel even said he interacted with former US Brig-Gen Janis Karpinsky, who was accused of many of the problems leading to abuses at Abu Ghraib. The Colonel portrayed Abu Ghraib as an isolated incident and a bad mistake that happened in only one area or cell block.

Mostly people just rolled their eyes. Someone from the club even suggested that he was so unbelievable, just let him talk and don’t ask questions and argue. I think everyone there could figure him out.

**the movie about war, peace and the media

Another interesting moment from the night, was the showing of the film by Indymedia and Democracy Now entitled “War And Peace, Showing The Media’s Role In The War.” That movie was sponsored on the program by a woman who will be joining the greens soon.

The movie was a powerful critique of mass media. One theme was that if the American media would show images of the wounded and killed in Iraq, the war would probably end in one week.

During the movie, I wondered what the reaction would be of the woman who was making pro-war comments and supporting the Colonel’s position. She was a very neat looking, composed person, exuding that kind of “I am the salt of the earth and I love our culture” attitude. I turned around to look at her where she was sitting behind me. Her cheery attitude was gone. She looked very intent. She was crouched down in her chair with her legs spread out straight in front of her and her arms folded. I truly believe that the images of bloodied children got to her.

The movie was presented by Long Island Media Watch 

***the standing protest

Two people commented that we were being rude. One man demanded to
know why we did that. I told him later in the hall, that I would
not condone words designed to oppress me. I told him that Denenberg was scaring me, and that Denenberg’s rhetoric is why I must be exposed to the National Guard walking around with huge, black guns at Penn Station.

In the end, though, several people agreed with the silent protest that Holley and I made. Most people were not offended. And, one of the lead organizers specifically said that he acknowledged our right to do that and thought it was a wonderful night of civil discussion and strong viewpoints.

6 Responses

  1. I was there. This post is a pile of lies and mental masturbation from losers that cannot claim any area as territory as they haven’t won any election outside of in their dreams. This includes Kuriloff, Gayle and Jim Brown.

    Sander Hicks was a complete lunatic. Between the MIHOP theories and the juvenile temper tantrum, he was laughed out of the forum with no credibility.

    Most people were disgusted with Jim Brown for attacking others while having no answers of his own. We’re still waiting for Jim Brown’s Iraq pullout plan. The troops would never make it out of Iraq if Brown had a choice because he couldn’t decide what his pullout plan would be.

    The Green Party came off as “fringe”, “extremist”, “dysfunctional” and “in dream world” and that came from the progressives in the room.

    Denenberg said that Iran was more of a threat that Iraq and the kids in the back turned around and faced the wall. Denenberg didn’t notice it and the others laughed about it later.

    The funny thing was that the two children in the back that did turn around eventually faced forward as they finally understood what Denenberg was trying to convey. They realized that Denenberg was the peace candidate that could win.

    Jim Brown came off as an idiot for thinking he could run for congress against someone that agrees with him on most issues and can win. Jim Brown running against Denenberg and King would be a dumb move. If the greens actually allow it, it would be an example of the perfect being the enemy of the good. Would the Greens prefer Denenberg or King? Because we all know it won’t be Brown.

    Overall, the Greens came off as a disorganized, unreasonable, group of mental masturbators that participate in circle jerks while others win minds and elections. Not a good night for the “Greens.”

    P.S. Sander doesn’t know if he’s running for Governor or Senator. He owns both hicksforgovernor.com and hicksforsenator.com.

    Pathetic

  2. Dear Pathetic,

    We decided we should probably leave your post up, because it is so telling.

    Though, at least we need an editor's note so that if people weren't there, they know how foolish your facts and analysis are.

    I was one of the kids in the back. I am 36 years old.

    The rest of your analysis was just as accurate.

    I decided to stand in the back, because Denenberg  started saying that America should follow Israel's example and understand that we need to trade civil liberties for protection from terrorists. If our country takes those few more steps and starts taking measures like Israel has, I will be horrified.

    Part of the reason I just stood up and turned my back was out of respect for the forum, not wanting to scream or argue. Also, Denenberg asked me to stand in silent protest. Denenberg started his presentation with an odd speech–I think meant to attack Sander Hicks, but also to suppress in general–which was like the speech given by Jim Lehrer at the fake duopoly Presidential debate. Jim Lehrer, reading from a script that the Democrats and Republicans created in their agreement to debate, told the audience to be quiet and not clap or express themselves, to be absolutely silent and stay in their chairs. It was an embarassing, humiliating call to obey in silence. Just like the opening of Denenberg 's speech.

    On the night of the Merrick-Bellmore Democratic club, Denenberg went on and on that people should show respect by being quiet and calm. So, when he said horrible, stupid things, about how we must act differently (ie: expect our civilil liberties to be curtailed) since 9-11, and that we should think like Israel, things that if enacted would destroy freedom and America, I had to think of a way to not condone them, but to respect his clear request for silence.

    Standing with my back towards Denenberg was a very reasonable and calm reaction.

    And, it felt very good. Especially when a fellow green decided to stand beside me in solidarity.

    I turned back around because the time for Deninberg's rants was over. (Although, like many politicians, he started up again). When there was dialogue again and not his one-sided fear-mongering, it seemed less necessary to stand in definance of his nasty, fearful, Bush-like propaganda.

    Denenberg is following the lead of the mushy Democrats. He says the War in Iraq was okay. It is just that now the Iraq War is unpopular and expensive. So, the middle class should reject it and look towards war with Iran.

    How does that make Deninberg a peace candidate? "Pathetic" needs to explain how Denenberg is a peace candidate from any perspective.

    The Greens all stated their peace and expressed themselves eloquently. We all hung around until the end and tried to have discussion with the audience and with the other speakers. And, we recruited some new members who realized that Denenberg  was just another fake, left/right Democrat.

    Not a bad night.

    Sorry, you did not have a good time, Pathetic.

    Peace and struggle,
    Kimberly Wilder

  3. I guess you Greens have yet to learn your lesson from 2000. You and your party’s willingess to cut off your noses to spite your faces defies all logic. I was at the March 14th meeting and I am a progressive and also a member of the Bellmore-Merrick Democratic Club. I probably share many of your views, but if you think that the way you guys conducted yourselves at that meeting won many supporters, you have another thing coming. This was not a protest or peace rally. It was a discussion and dialogue about the war. You all behaved like little children that make demands and then stick their fingers in their ears and scream “MEMEMEMEMEMEMMEME” when other peoplt try to talk. Your holier than thou, intellectual snobbery and sheer rudeness were make me want to wretch. If you cared about the poor, the environment, womens rights and stopping the war, you would not be writing stupid songs and wishing you were back smoking pot in the 60s. You would get behind a Democatic candidate that actually has a shot at winning and work your ass off for him or her. If your conduct is any evidency of your party’s strategy for winning over converts, the Green party will never get a line on the ballot again. You guys shoot yourselves in the foot every single time and I will have no part of it.

    –Steve

    –Steve

  4. “We decided we should probably leave your post up, because it is so telling.”

    Maybe the decision to leave to up would be because you care about free speech?

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