Gathering of Eagles wrap up

| March 19, 2007

Wow! What a weekend. I’d like to thank the people who visited more than 43,000 times since 3pm Saturday and special thanks to Charles Johnson at Little Green Footballs, Curt at Flopping Aces, Michele Malkin, Crotchety Old Bastard and all of the rest of the bloggers who linked me up to their front pages. I’m honored.  

Mostly, I was truly humbled by the reaction and the traffic. The emails were just wonderful, even if I didn’t answer them all. Thanks so much. But honestly, it was just a continuation of the high I felt from being surrounded by my brothers and having several exhilerating discussions with them on Saturday morning. It was probably one of the best weekends I’ve ever had. Thanks to all.

I suppose I should mention that I was linked up to less savory websites, too. I deleted the trackbacks, pingbacks and brokebacks because (mostly to my glee) they had some nasty things to say about me and us in general. The worst, though, were over at (surprise, surprise) the Huffington Post. And that’s mainly what this blog entry is about – clearing up some of the misperceptions of this blog and some of the reports I read from the MSM.

First to the throngs of Leftists who are mad because I didn’t approve your comments, ya’all pretty much said the same things – it was as if you were working off talking points or something (that would never happen, though, would it). So I put up one negative comment that pretty much said everything the rest of you said.

The same thing was evident in the HuffPo comments. Everyone was just yapping about “why aren’t the veterans over in Iraq if they support the war so much” – mostly the reason we veterans aren’t in Iraq fighting the al Qaida is that we’re too old and the military won’t take us back. Most of us probably would go – but, one thing we all realized looking at our generation all around us at the march – we’re all pretty old. One veteran told me, “Geez, we’re older than the WWII guys were when we came back from Vietnam.”

But, betcherass, alot of us have our kids over there. So quit wearing out that stupid, ignorant cliche and find something else to bleat incessantly.

And, yes, the video I took of the protesters’ area could be deceiving – if you didn’t bother to read that I had written that I got there at 8:30 am – 3 1/2 hours before the march started – while the hippies were still enjoying room service in the $600/night hotel room that their parents had paid for. The videos compared the participation early on. I know reading comprehension is problem for the Left who like uber-life-sized puppets and pretty yellow signs with Hitler-Bush pictures, so I’ll give ya’all a pass on that one. It was my fault so next time I’ll put up crayon drawings.

And, yes, I am worse than Fox News (or Faux News which ya’all think is so clever apparently) – they’re the number one cable news network. We’re all worse than Fox News – that’s why they’re #1.

But Fox News was just as bad as the other networks in their coverage of this event. All of the news trucks were parked on Constitution Ave – the little “S” part that divided the veterans from the Leftists. They were directly behind me as I filmed the protester’s part of the area. There were no TV news people interviewing the veterans early in the morning. They had thousands of people they could have been interviewing before the parade of clowns and they didn’t take advantage of that opportunity. Now, I know the Left is more spectacular and more flambouyant, but c’mon guys – you missed half of the story this weekend.

As far as numbers go, I’d say the estimates of 30k veterans is probably right – but I’m no math whiz. If you look at the map of the event I posted from the Gathering of Eagles on Thursday night below, veterans occupied the area from the shaded area right (east) of the Vietnam Memorial all the way west to the Lincoln Memorial – every square inch, with exception of the part that the Park Police had fenced off around the Wall. 

The Left was pretty much confined to the area west of the “S” portion of Constitution. Granted there were probably more that straggled up at the last minute, but that area was never full the whole time I was there.

I read some report from AP  (can’t find the original story now, AP’s changed their links so often since Saturday) that claimed some poor hippie girl had her sign torn up and she was crying to reporters that some big biker dudes had accosted her; I doubt that it happened. For one thing, I can’t find the story on the web except where it’s been quoted by bloggers and as we’ve learned from dealing with AP, stories that turn out to be untrue, mysteriously disappear.

The veterans stayed south and east of Constitution. The only Leftists that ventured over to our side were trying to provoke veterans. They paraded through our ranks waving their signs and shouting at the top of their lungs – even calling us “baby killers”. I guess some platitudes never get old. And most of them were tiny hippie girls. I never saw any of them get physically abused or their signs taken away – although I can’t vouch for any comments that might have been sent their way. All-in-all, veterans remained fairly civil. I guess, generally, they just wanted to protect the Wall, like they said – and they respect free speech. A concept lost on the Left.

But I will admit, I saw one 60s-era hippie (who’d probably been at the Lincoln Memorial since 60s in a pot-induced state) get his sign mishandled on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. The sign was something clever like “End the Bush-it” or a reasonable facimile. A burley biker-type grabbed the pole the hippie had holding up his sign. Immediately, three other burley biker-types forced the first to release the guy’s sign and the old hippie went merrily on his way – uninjured and feeling safe deep in veteran territory – waving what he thought was a clever slogan. Veterans policed their own ranks – and they aren’t so pleased as the Left to get thrown in jail, or have their own thrown in jail. They have jobs.

And I’d like to know which part of my original report could be considered spewing hate. Sure, I don’t like ya’all on the Left, but the only thing I really “hate”, per se, is wet toilet paper. So I don’t know where ya’all got that.

I guess none of ya’all see the irony in claiming that my videos and photos are somehow misleading, while at the same time you claim that you put more trust in the national news organizations’ pictures and videos. We all took pictures and posted pictures that would appeal to our particular audiences – to say one set is more trustworthy than the other is just lying to yourselves. I never claimed that the media’s pictures or videos were false – merely that they didn’t bother to show both sides. I, at least, showed both sides. I guess that’s spewing hate, huh?

But what really gets me ta-gigglin’ is the email I got that claimed I somehow manufactured the number of veterans in my pictures. I guess if you weren’t there and your only frame of reference was that you saw the shoddy coverage by all of the networks, you’d doubt the numbers. But, please don’t tell me what I saw and filmed, OK? I’ll admit that I own a copy of Adobe Photoshop – but that damn thing keeps me confused. I’ve just recently figured out the cropping thing. Thanks for thinking I’m more adept at this computer stuff than I really am, though. I guess it’s like the “Bush is an evil genius/Bush is an idiot” paradox ya’all have goin’.

And Michele Malkin’s prediction that the Left would put up the Washington Post’s one picture of a veteran in full blown insanity mode came to fruition on a leftist blog called “The Populist” (which seems to have a partner bog called DC Direct both written by someone in Michigan. Editor’s Note: The hardcase just sent me a comment and announced he’s not from California, so I’ve adjusted the entry to reflect what his IP address said. I’d post the comment, except he accused me of doing things with the President I’ve never been close enough to him to accomplish. I just broke the links to his websites because he doesn’t deserve the traffic) who wrote a piece called “Gathering of Eagles, and Just a Right Wing Nutjob Concert” which used the stereotype of mean biker-dudes who “flexed their collective testosterone stoked muscles and fists at those concerned about this so-called War in Iraq.”

But on the other hand, several Pro-War rally participants stooped to destroying other people’s personal property. A sign was ripped up, by a Pro War Attendee. Which shows the new low that this Pro-War, Right Wing nut jobs will go to. To further their cause. 

So this person who didn’t bother to attend, succumbs to the stereotypes and linkless news reports. I’d like to see some proof that some Leftists’ signs got destroyed. I didn’t see it and I walked the whole area about 10 times during the 4 hours I was there. That’s why my pictures are of the whole event, not some little corner of it like most of the media’s pictures.

I resent being called “pro-war” – no one is more anti-war more than those who have to fight the wars. However, we’re not intellectually crippled by the fact that, in some cases, war is a neccessary evil. If you fool yourself into thinking that all wars can be avoided with a few kind words, you’re more a danger to yourself than anyone else.

And you don’t try to make yourself sound more intelligent by insinuating that Michele Malkin and Ann Coulter are secretly lesbian lovers, gumball.

YouTube has a video of one protester who tried to get to Wall – she was stopped by the Park Police and a companion with more commonsense. So, she flips off the vets.

Category: Antiwar crowd, Gathering of Eagles, Media

Comments (4)

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  1. GI JANE says:

    Hey John! Finally made it to your website! I saw the reference to your blog on Michelle Malkin’s site. Good job! I wish I could have been there and you know that if I were still in the DC area, you’d have seen me. I’ll be a regular visitor.

  2. Jonn Lilyea says:

    Jeez, it’s only been three months since I gave you the address of the blog, Jane. I thought you’d fallen off the edge of Cleveland or sumpthin’.

  3. GI JANE says:

    Nah, I’m about 30 miles west of there in Lorain. I’m looking for a second career in Homeland Security in the Cleveland area. Retirement is booooooring. I have to keep myself busy or you’ll be reading about me in the papers!

  4. Jonn Lilyea says:

    I know Lorain. Nice quiet little town. I’d prefer warmer climes for my final retirement, though. Good to see that you’re not frozen stiff or in jail. Stick around, doll.