Democratic National Convention (July 26-29, 2004)
Boston Social Forum (July 23-25, 2004)
Boston, MA
(DC Anti-War Network trip, pictures July 23-July 26)
Photos by Genevieve Calmes and Jim Macdonald

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Read Jim's report:
Narrative: "Boston S--storm"

Paul in Chevy Chase
Paul the Peacewalker, Ida, and Suzanne get ready in Chevy Chase for DAWN's trip to Boston.

Dave wearing one of his many provactive t-shirts waits to leave.

Pete's van hobbled to and from Boston, but thanks to everyone's help, especially Luke's, everyone got where they needed to go.

It's now the next day in the Boston "T" (subway station.  We didn't know you weren't supposed to take photos.  I can't imagine this photo adds any surveillance information.  Here's Genevieve.

Pete here and a large banner from the Beehive Collective out of Maine.  They stayed with many of our group.  This picture is at the Boston Social Forum.

Proposition One, fighting for 25 years to ban nuclear weapons.  They've held vigil outside the White House 24/7 since 1981.  Genevieve and Pete stand near the banner.

Elijah (aka "Nature Boy"), Genevieve, Paul, and Pete enjoying each other's company at the Boston Social Forum.

Jim and Pete stand near the Prop 1 banner.  There, we also handed out flyers.

The Beehive Collective, set up right next to us, had several shows.  This one featured puppets.

Elijah was very helpful getting Paul around.  Here both relax.

A woman with many buttons.  There were a lot of interesting people at the Social forum, which had about 2,000 people.

Some people in climbing outfits.  We never found out what they were up to.

Check out the guy with the horns.  Yet, I bet he was surprised to see "Nature Boy", who attracted even more attention.

Fuzzy picture of Shujaa Graham, an exonerated death row inmate, speaking out against the death penalty at one standing room only workshop.

Some people in the Beehive Collective wait to leave.  They traveled in this vegetable oil-powered

This diesel engine can run on both vegetable oil and diesel.  It gets 45 mpg.  You can get the vegetable oil free from restaurants.

Genevieve talks with the man from Maine who can convert your diesel vehicle to vegetable oil for only $800.

I thought this sign a little tasteless, but it's a reference to the real horrors at Abu Ghraib.

One restaurant in Cambridge declared itself a "DNC free zone"

This shot pans from Peach's Point in Marblehead, where Genevieve and I stayed.  This is the backyard.

Here I stand at the same point looking pretty bad.

Dave waits in the car to get to a long day of protesting.

In Boston Common, Michael from Mother Jones interviews me.  Luke and signs that Dave and Genevieve made stand nearby.

A pan of the three of us.  You can read the Mother Jones article here.

Here Michael talks a few moments with Genevieve.  Soon, we would head over to the ANSWER, and what was supposed to be Vets for Peace, march.

A shot of part of the Boston skyline taken from Boston Common.  Other taller buildings make up another skyline.

This socialist group tells us to say no to Bush, Kerry, and Nader.

Many of the ANSWER people had signs like this banner calling on people to free the Miami Cuban 5.

Dave as President Bush.  As usual, the press loved him.  I don't know what the police behind him thought.

Another shot of our President Bush waving in front of his police friends on bicycles.

The crowd waits to march, and ANSWER sets up a security chain at the front.  Later, Pete would have arguments with them about some of their tactics.

This man made the photos of many mainstream newspapers.  Take a good look at him in front of the ANSWER truck.

Here another picture of him.  "No More War" indeed!

Paul is visible in this generic shot of people at the rally.

A close up of Paul, with Genevieve and Ann to the side.

Paul and Genevieve, with Ann to their side, march.  Paul walks awfully fast.

The march gets started with many pro-Aristide chants.

Look at the provocative sign about the Iraq war.  Notice the hands at the bottom of the photo.

Here is a state police officer in full armor.  Contrary to much of what you'll read here, though, many of the police were helpful and willing to talk politics.

Jay drumming.  He drummed a lot, the next day in colonial outfit as delegates walked toward the Fleet Center.

Now, from behind, Jay continues to drum.  The crowd, about 1,500, was small.  We as a group could separate and easily find each other again.

Genevieve, Ann, Paul, and Jay pose on the march.

Her message simply says "Give."

On a bridge approaching the Fleet Center were Boston Police and military.  Some even wielded automatic weapons.

If not for the sign in front, this would have been a perfect shot of a military person inside the lens of Paul's peace sign.

One of many shots that show the irony of the divide between the world of peace and the world of the police state.

When we approached the Fleet Center, we found these big black fences.  So, Jay, Genevieve, and others beat rhythms on the fences.  Here is Jay's hand.

Many press photos showed what it was like looking at the protest from behind these fences.  Here's what it was like in front of them.

You cannot read it in this photo, but the sign is welcoming people to the Democratic National Convention.

Pete and Jay pose with Presidential Candidate (not kidding) Vermin Supreme.  Vermin's bumper sticker found its way onto Genevieve's car.

Genevieve, beautiful as always, rests on her sign as the Jamaica Plain People's Party prepares to get under way.

Here are the first two performers.  Unlike most people there, the woman signing actually had a John Kerry sticker on.

A shot of the amphitheater.  Most people were on the hill above getting free food.  This woman from a union introduced Kucinich.

Dennis Kucinich spoke for about 3 minutes.  Some of his supporters grumbled afterward by the very short appearance.

Here is a close up of Kucinich speaking.  Later, friends of ours saw him in a restaurant in Chinatown.  I guess that was his rush.

Mimi Kennedy of Dharma and Greg fame talks about the new progressive group she is now leading.

The Jamaica Plain People's Party was organized by "Fund the Dream", which struck me as an odd name for an organization.

Half way through the rally, the Backbone Campaign began their march to give spine to the Democratic Party.

Here Dave struggles to hold a 70 foot backbone up.  It took more than 17 people to carry this giant spine.

Bob of DAWN holds the backbone.  Be sure to read the various messages on the spine.

You can see how long the backbone was.  Here it is prior to leaving the park.

Dave said that carrying the backbone fulfilled a dream of his.  He always wanted to carry this spine, and now unexpectedly here was his chance.

You can see how the backbone snaked and looked like a real backbone.

There was no permit for this march, which numbered 500 at peak.  The marchers waited for a police escort before going.

Here is a full shot of the backbone from afar.  You can see the Boston homes behind.  We were surprised by how big many of the homes were.

Here the backbone almost falls apart.  You can see the trouble Dave and others were having.

You can read the liberal messages.  Personally, "strengthen multi-lateralism" means destroy them with your friends and not simply by yourself.  Sigh.

This woman was the life and spirit of this march.  She and her friend led many of the chants.

This man held up branches so that the backbone could pass through.  Green Party candidate David Cobb was nearby observing and telling people to take the streets, that they were our streets.

Throughout the route, Backbone Campaign people helped navigate the spine.  I guess the spine fell apart so often is more symbolic of the Democratic Party's spine than anyone could have guessed.

Because the Backbone Campaign would not take the streets, they struggled to maneuver the spine under trees and wires.

Here Boston police got into arguments with people outside observing.  When the police tried to get people moving, people tried to argue the law with the police.

Finally, police told demonstrators to go on the road because they were tired by how long the march was taking.  They just wanted it over with.  Notice the costume of the guy on the right.

Another interesting juxtaposition of the police with the protest.

When we arrived back at the park, it was amazing to see so many police motorcycles.

Here's another shot of the police lined up in multiple cars as liberal peace activists, mostly Kucinich supporters, finish their march.  Perhaps, they should infiltrate and they'd see that they were no threat.

Jim and Dave get their chance to stand with Vermin Supreme.  We ran into Vermin at least 6 times in different parts of town over the next day.

Here's Bob enjoying the party as day became night.

Suzanne and Matt spent much of their time in Boston selling political t-shirts.

Genevieve and Jim sit on the "T."  A passenger offered to take our picture.  Unfortunately, my eyes are closed.

Here's another shot, not quite as bright as the first.  At least, we're both smiling.

Pictures inside the Bl(a)ck Tea Society's (main anti-DNC organizers) Convergence Center were prohibited.  Here is the outside instead.

Here in Boston Common, Quinlan, Dave, and Genevieve on phone hold the DAWN banner.

Paul stands over everyone.  It almost looks like his peace sign has vanquished everyone.

Dave is sitting in Boston Common with Genevieve's sign: "Kerry, you don't have my anti-war vote."

A great shot of Luke and his bicycle waiting to go on a permitted march with the anarchists.

Before the march, this man spoke at great length.  After him, I met a Green Party man named Charles from Chicago, whom I've corresponded with for months about RNC planning.

Behind our small march, dozens of police in motorcycles trailed.  Police outnumbered marchers by more than 2 or 3 to 1.

Here 1,000 boots lay to represent a fraction of the 16,000 or more Iraqis who have died since the Iraq war began.

A reporter from a progressive news outfit in Southern California interviewed Paul about his story of losing his sight after being stone by KKK members.  He then interviewed the rest of us.

As Paul and the rest of us get interviewed, Dave decides to pass the time by protesting.

Paul was happy to share his story with the eager and receptive journalist.

Jim and Paul continue their interview on Boylston Street.

From left to right: Paul, Ann, the tree, Jim, Dave, and Quinlan.

David Cobb, Green Party presidential candidate, speaks on steps to random people near Government Center.  Unlike any other party candidate, we found ourselves repeatedly running into Cobb.

A close up of Cobb.  He was passionate and spoke articulately on every question.  His rapid speech made it hard to get a good picture.

Several asked questions, including Quinlan and Paul from our group.

He answered question after question.  The only sign there, though, urged people to vote for Ralph Nader.

This is what America should be.  A Presidential candidate on the street talking with the people.

David Cobb continued to talk and answer questions for a long time even though it looked like he was trying to get somewhere else.

Helicopters like this, often multiple helicopters, hovered over every event big and small.

About to go home, or so we thought, we decided to pass through the "free speech zone" on our way to meeting our friends.

Razor wire lined the "free speech zone."  We boycotted the zone until curiosity got the better of us.

Genevieve and Paul stand together in the so-called "free speech zone."

To fight against U.S. Militarization abroad and assaults on our civil liberties at home, go to
Paul in Chevy Chase
Yes, it was as glum as it looks.  I doubt this was the best place to unravel the banner.

You can see the free speech pen is just as bad as advertised.  Black fences, then netting, topped with razor wire.  In the background, a Palestinian rights rally apologizes for being there.

Paul's peace sign, what MPs said might be a blind man's terrorist threat, looks strikingly like the only weapon against this injustice.

Another picture of Paul's peace sign, not able to block out the razor wire of Boston's branch of Guantanamo.

Two police officers hang out on the other side of Boston's own wall of shame.

Behind the "Free Speech" pen, a Democratic delegate walks by.  He's curious about what kinds of demonstrations have gone on.

This guy stepped in front of the sign I wanted to take a picture of.  It reads "Protest Prison."

Behind the black fences, it reads unwelcomingly, "Welcome to Boston and the Democratic National Convention."

As we left the free speech zone, we thought we were going home.  Then, we saw the delegates entering, and our entire trip changed.

This cropped shot shows the irony.  The Democrats in the Fleet Center behind, black fences, and protesters for democracy on the outside.  Who are the "democrats"?

In front of the Democrats' welcome sign, military watched.  The divide between the people and those who govern grows.

Dave and Genevieve started shouting at delegates, including DC mayor Williams, for hours.  Thousands of delegates individually got an earful of bitter disappointment.
Now that Boston is over, come join us for our trip to New York.  Get on a bus!

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