Day 2: Walking back over the bridge that spans the Cuyahoga after an hour passing out water bottles in Public Square, we passed the white supremacists heading down to the action, if action is part circus freak show and part show of military force of the publicly authorized kind.
The police wore black. The supremacists wore camouflage. Both were armed to the teeth. But the action on Public Square was more circus and self indulgence than anything else.
The Blue Lab and I have been spending our time at the Masonic Temple in Ohio City, the Somerville of Ohio. Opposition groups leased it to serve as communal HQ and a vibrant collection of causes fill the rooms working on their laptops, spray painting slogans, smoking hemp, yelling about Uber ownership but calling it anyway when they need to get downtown.
A friend put me in touch with Felipe Witchger who had flown in the day before to help a physician friend who had started STAT (Stand Together Against Trump), a collection of previously non political medical professionals opposed to the Republican nominee.
I was enlisted to help with messaging and the five Blue Labber’s who made the journey out by car dove right in. They have spent two days building out STAT’s on line and communications presence. We’re preparing for the STAT protest march and rally on Thursday.
The perimeter around the Quicken Loan convention hall, the Q, is intimidating and presents and eerie scene. It’s as democratically accessible as the government fortress in Havana.
The natives are friendly and hesitate at the light, even with multiple lanes. I must resist hitting the horn. Anyone will talk to you. Lunch for 6 at an excellent Middle Eastern restaurant near protest HQ cost 62 dollars.
I walked into the bar in my “hotel” this evening to write this. I was wearing shorts and a Brockton Rox t-shirt. A patron asked me if I was a salesman. I said “dressed like this?” He pointed to my IPad and said “you look ready to take sales orders.”
Yes I am. I’m selling American democracy. Step on up.