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Monday, May 29, 2017
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29
May 2017
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  [All day event] Peace Parade
Description:
There will be no Peace Parade this Memorial Day. For many years Rochester has had a Peace Parade following the main Memorial Day parade, a compromise forged by Jan Bezilla and other early peace activists who were repeatedly refused a place in the main parade. The Peace Parade, memorializing all victims of US wars and countering the day’s celebration of militarism, has been organized in recent years by the Peace Action & Education task force of Metro Justice, and has been enthusiastically appreciated by participants and spectators alike. But not appreciated, however, by parade officials and police, who have treated the Peace Parade as an interloper, granting our permits and staging areas at the last minute, forcing our start farther and farther behind the main parade, confiscating our flags and signs, even turning their backs to us on the reviewing stand. We decided this year not to allow our honorable, indispensable message of peace to be treated with such disrespect and disdain. Unfortunately, such an attitude only mirrors the blind support given by most US leaders and many citizens for our country’s intensified warmaking, which almost daily slaughters hundreds of civilians and suspected militants, and wreaks misery worldwide. Voices of opposition to this ongoing, insane militarism, such as the Peace Parade, are decidedly unwelcome by the powers that be. We had hoped to march in the main parade alongside the Veterans for Peace, but they, too, had had to fight for their precarious place in the main parade. This leaves us without a parade this year. But we will still be there on Main Street this Memorial Day, and our voices will not be silenced. Doug Noble

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