ECO-HOLICS ARE JUST TRUST-FUND TRASHERS
By STEVE DUNLEAVY
April 22, 2001 -- THEY are whitebread trust-fund trashers and traitors who
are a bull's roar away from the hippies of another generation of
Molotov cocktails, slingshots, helmets and gas masks have replaced guitars.
Combat boots have replaced sandals.
The command of the late '60s and early '70s to "be cool" has been replaced
by the call to destroy.
When it started last year in Seattle, maybe we thought we were just
witnessing an isolated aberration.
Then, at the Republican Convention in Philadelphia, I saw a curious replay.
"We had intelligence that they were coming from all over the country. A lot
of the same people from Seattle. We could control it and head off a bad
situation," Philadelphia Police Commissioner John Timoney, formerly of New
York, said at the time.
But the demonstrators had a network of cell phones and walkie-talkies. Some
of them had weapons, including everyone from anarchists to wannabe
terrorists, and Police Commissioner Timoney settled down what could have
been an unsettled Philadelphia.
These particular nasty people were not exercising freedom of speech.
Timoney and two cops were trapped by a bunch of the demonstrators, and if
it wasn't for a bit of old-fashioned muscle, there could have been a tragedy.
"One bunch of guys tried to pile-drive a bicycle through the head of one of
my men," said Timoney.
When their ski masks were off, revealing their faces, I made rough mental
notes of maybe a dozen or so.
Then, outside the Staples Center at the Democratic Convention, I recognized
the same faces.
"Yeah, we were in Philadelphia," some of them boasted. And some said they
were in Seattle, although it could not be confirmed.
Some of them gave me first names. Some gave me phony names. But a lot of
them were quick to give the geography of their origin.
They came from Westchester, New York, Grosse Point outside of Detroit, Oak
Park, Chicago - places where a lot of people can't afford to live unless
their daddies are rich.
One young woman, maybe 18 to 21, told me she came from Tiburon, outside San
Francisco. Some millionaires draw the line at the cost of real estate there.
One look at their sneakers, their clothes and their watches told
immediately they weren't living on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.
Caches of aggressive material have been discovered everywhere these nasty,
rich punks gather.
In Los Angeles, in a police raid on an unused factory where some of the
demonstrators were found, fireworks were discovered - as in gunpowder. And
that could have been disastrous.
Throughout the late '60s and early '70s, I covered the great unwashed from
Columbia University to DuPont Circle in Washington, to the Republican
Convention in Miami, where Nixon still got elected.
But apart from the anti-police taunts and the strains of "Give Peace a
Chance" and "We Will Overcome," the bearded and beaded ones were more
interested in hopping into the sack en masse or lighting up some grass than
bringing down a government.
In 1968, at the Democratic Convention in Chicago, shop windows were broken
by hoodlums. Abbie Hoffman, the then-leader of the Yippie movement, would
say later: "They were some local crazies. We weren't anywhere near it. We
were too stoned to get into breaking windows, and we couldn't outrun the cops.
"Sometimes some professor would preach to us about the geopolitical
international campaign waged by the capitalists.
"We would cheer him on, but didn't know what he was talking about, so we'd
just light up another joint."
As kids in Vietnam were getting killed, I wasn't a great fan of those
hippies. But what have we got now?
The hippies were so tame that the Black Liberation Army would start to get
serious and cause chaos.
But now, whether it be Quebec, Los Angeles, Philadelphia or Seattle, you
are hard pressed to see any real concentration of black faces.
The black kids of today have very little in common with the whitebread
wannabe terrorists in Quebec.
Unless you have the frequent-flyer miles of a pilot or your daddy is rich,
how do you get from Seattle to Philadelphia to Los Angeles to Quebec?
OK, you could drive. But even gasoline costs money and will cost a lot more
if the violent eco-holics have their way in this dangerous group.
Of course, it won't touch the whitebreads, they have the loot.
Isn't it strange that some rich kids aren't satisfied with a buck? They
have to romanticize the nastiness of the street.
I never thought I would feel nostalgic for the days of the hippies.
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