Yesterday here in Charlotte was the big “March on Wall Street South” protest, which organizers, the media, and law enforcement were predicting/expecting between 2,000 and 10,000 would attend to air their grievances against the “Wall Street of the South” (Charlotte). And because the Tampa protests at the RNC were pretty much a bust due to the weather, people were speculating demonstrators would make up for lost time on Sunday. The base of the march was at Frazier Park in uptown, and as I watched live streams of the park yesterday on CSPAN, it became clear to me that this event would see nowhere near the numbers people were anticipating (and hoping for, in the case of leftists and their allies in the national press). To my admittedly untrained eye, there were “hundreds”, not “thousands” … and as it turns out, I wasn’t far off the mark:
CHARLOTTE, N.C. Portraying Charlotte as an emblem of a financial system gone awry, a police-estimated 800 chanting and sign-wielding protesters demanded reform Sunday as they marched through uptown.
Organizers said more than 1,000 took part, but even that estimate fell short of the 2,000 to 10,000 protesters police had expected. What one organizer called a “family-friendly” march ended with few clashes between police and protesters.
Among the isolated signs of trouble: a man with large rocks in his hand, looking like he was getting ready to throw them, spotted by police on an overpass on the parade route. The man dropped the rocks and ran when officers approached, police Chief Rodney Monroe said. He has not been apprehended.
Police arrested two people during the two-hour march. Medics treated two people struggling in the 92-degree heat.
Police officers found rocks and even bags of feces stashed along the march route in advance of the march. Police have also launched an investigation after finding two concrete cylinders that were placed on the 277 overpass that leads to uptown Charlotte.
All in all, in spite of the above mentioned attempts by the more militant wing of the far left to turn the march into something you’d see out of Occupy Oakland, the protest was pretty much a tame garden variety far left bashfest … against America, Israel, capitalism, privatization, war and was very much pro-union, pro-statism, and “America is raaaaaaaacist/sexist!”. The usual stuff (photos here). I was disappointed to not see any Code Pink “activists” on site wearing their now-infamous vagina costumes. But maybe that will change later this week as official DNC business starts tomorrow (the DNC-sponsored “non-partisan” Carolina Fest uptown is today).
I don’t navigate uptown very well (maybe this will help?) but I’m going to try to get up there before noon tomorrow to see what kind of pictures and video I can get. Wish me luck!
BTW, First Lady Michelle Obama arrives later today. She is scheduled to address delegates tomorrow night at 10:35. Aaand, three cheers for the headline out of today’s Raleigh News and Observer: “As DNC begins, Romney gains in NC”