Protest by Sara Leavitt

Published on 8 September 2003 in Moment (Please wait)

This was taken in New York City during the April protests against the Iraq war. February marked the first time I had ever protested against a war. The organizers had not been able to obtain a permit for people to march towards the stage where speakers were gathered, but people were allowed to march on the sidewalks. An overflowing amount of people of all ages and backgrounds gathered at the corner of Central Park and when it was time to start moving, there were simply too many of us to stay on the sidewalk.

Tentatively people began to stray from the sidewalk and onto the street. I stepped down and felt amazingly free. Soon everyone was in the street, traffic had no choice but to stop amidst the crowds of people and we soon shut down the entire East Side and connecting bridges. Later on we heard reports on the radio of simultaneous protests going on around the world and cheered when we heard about the success of the sit-ins in London. It felt so important to be participating in these worldwide protests and to be surrounded by so many people who, like me, were against this absurd and illegal war. Months later, these feelings may seem out of date, since the war has happened and the military occupation by the United States begun. But that day it felt like we could do anything.

Sara Leavitt (Philadelphia, USA)

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