I thought you might be interested in a recap of the combined protest held in Alamagordo on January 2nd 2010.
Early in the morning we learned that the police had received word that there would be pro-Obama supporters protesting our protest. They were not required to pay for permits as were the Tea Party protesters (who paid for one side of the street) and the 2nd Amendment group (who paid for the other side of the street). The police advised that the 2nd Amendment group would have to move to our side of the street so the pro-Obama policy people could have the other side. Apparently, the permitting process is enforced arbitrarily.
Needless to say, with all the armed law abiding citizens showing up, and rumors that one pro-Obama type allegedly informing that he would like to get up on a roof and shoot us all, I was a tad nervous that the pro-Obama group would start some kind of trouble.
On arrival, approximate 100 people were already protesting. The 2nd Amendment supporters and Tea Party supporters spread out along both sides of the NW corner, and the Sons of Liberty Riders motorcycle members spread out along the NE corner. There were about 15 or so Sons of Liberty Riders motorcycle members already present. On the SE corner, there were 5 pro-Obama policy supporters. (This is confirmed in an interview linked below as they called this group “a handful” of Obama supporters, however, they kept the camera zoomed in tight so you couldn’t see how small that group was.) More people streamed in and joined the crowds over the next 1/2 hour until there were approximately 300-400 protestors on the Tea Party corner, 20 or so on the Sons of Liberty Motorcycle members corner and 8 pro-Obama policy members on their corner (although one may have been a police officer at the highest head count point, and possibly another was a reporter).
Tea Party protest signs included the usual protests; anti-taxes, anti-big government, anti-passing and enforcing unconstitutional laws, vote out all the incumbants (republican and democrat), anti-stimulus packages, anti-bail-outs, anti-communists in government, anti- Nancy (Pelosi), anti Harry (Reid), anti-government health-care, anti-abortion, anti-fascism, anti-One World Bank, anti-Federal Reserve, pro-Bill of Rights, represent the majority, pro-2010 vote them all out, pro-US Consitution, and so on. One couple passed the intersection a number of times. They were driving a pick-up truck with a dirty toilet in the back with anti-Obama policy slogans – the implied message was to flush Obama’s policies. Tea Party protesters carried American Flags, Don’t Tread On Me flags, and wore patriotic t-shirts and other accessories with the American flag displayed.
The Alamogordo Second Amendment Task Force, as well as some Tea Party members openly, responsibly and peacefully wore their weapons. One couple brought their dog to the demonstration and strapped a weapon on to his body. Around his neck was a sign declaring “Bring it On, Obama”. Someone asked me if I was afraid of all the guns. I said, “No. The guns are in the hands of responsible citizens. I’m much more afraid of the dog.” 2nd Amendment rights supporters carried American Flags, and wore t-shirts in support of the 2nd Amendment and other accessories with the American flag displayed.
The Sons of Liberty Riders group carried a number of US flags and also displayed signs in support of the 2nd Amendment and were there in support of both of the other two protesting groups. It turns out that the Sons of Liberty Riders were mostly 40 years and older and not the 1960’s “Easy Rider” TV types. I enjoyed speaking with quite a few of them, as they were right on board with the same issues as the Tea Party supporters.
Persons in attendance from the above three groups ranged from Albuquerque, Roswell, Ruidoso, Alamagordo, Las Cruces, Deming, Silver City, Tularosa, Lea County, Lincoln County, and other locations.
The pro-Obama group had 3 signs. One stated “Elmer Fudd for President”, another stated the holder supported all of Obama’s policies, and a third stated support for health care for all and Obama. There were no American flags on their corner or any other patriotic paraphanalia.
The intersection was very busy in both directions. Drivers of the vehicles honked their horns seemingly non-stop as they passed the 3 groups. In response to the driver’s support, the crowd spontaneously broke out into chants of “USA” on a number of occassions. I honestly never heard one horn honking for the pro-Obama group even though I was actively watching and listening for this.
There were public safety patrol cars driving by the area. The only time I saw someone who appeared to be a police officer outside of a patrol car was when one approached the pro-Obama group on two separate occasions. I do not know what prompted this, for as far as I could determine they were quietly and peacefully protesting we protestors.
As far as news media coverage, NBC affiliate KOB was present, and NRA reporter and photographer were covering the event, the new Mexico Independent, Sun-News, and several other reporters from unknown media outlets. There were some other people present who appeared to be covering the event, however, they were not wearing any type of press ID.
One gentlemen I spoke to appeared to be in his 40s and informed me that he had recently retired from the military. He stated he was not part of any of the three groups present, however, this was his 2nd tea party rally he attended. He stated he supported the protestors and would attend future rallies.
While talking to various people in all three groups, one common theme emerged, regardless of their individual protest: Support of the US Constitution and a determined mindset to vote out politicians of any party if they do not start obeying the Constitution.
I personally feel that it was important to see see separate groups starting to come together at these types of protest rallies and I hope this continues in the future so that politicians can visibly see this and start figuring out where the majority actually lays – if the politicians still bother to represent the majority.
Overall, the protest was a success. It was peaceful. There was a tremendous amount of support from drivers passing by via honking and thumbs up. Once again, there was no garbage left on site, so it cost the Alamagordo citizens nothing in clean up.
And for all the media hoop-la about guns being present and the concerns that violence would break-out – all I saw was a lot of friendly faces with smiles at meeting like minded citizens from all walks of life uniting together.