Speech given by Meredith Aby, Anti-War Committee member, at the DNC press conference
August 9th, 2010
Today we are submitting to the city of Minneapolis our application to protest Labor Day 2012 – the opening day of the Democratic National Convention. If the DNC chooses Minneapolis, we want to have the time necessary to organize a significant anti-war protest. Just as the city and the Democratic party will need time to coordinate their event, we will need time to coordinate what will be a significant protest demanding an end to the US occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq.
Our plan is to rally at Loring Park and march down Hennepin Avenue to 4th, take 4th to Chicago, take Chicago to 8th St. S, and take 8th to Elliot Park where we will have a closing rally. This route will take us past the Metrodome which is where the city plans to host the convention. We will march through the streets of Minneapolis loudly demanding “Money for Human Needs Not for War!”
We know from our work organizing a protest of over 30,000 people at the RNC in 2008 that it requires a lot of work to build a national protest which is why we are starting now. What we are showing today is that the local groups that worked together to fight against the Republican Party’s support for the war in Iraq are prepared to continue to work in coalition with each other to send a similar message to the Democratic Party for their support for the US wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Our coalition of anti-war, immigrant rights, economic rights, students and labor groups are ready to join together to demand a real change in US foreign policy. A change from occupation and war to real justice and peace. We say bring the troops home now and we will say it to the leadership of the Democratic Party in person if they choose Minneapolis to host their convention.
What do we want? Bring the troops home!
When do we want it? Now!