Friday, May 26, 2006

Cindy Sheehan hits Melbourne - part 1/3

Last night was quite the spectacle, as hordes of socialists descended upon RMIT university's Storey Hall for the Voices for Peace conference, with guest star Cindy Sheehan. On the way in, we were immediately mobbed by the anti-war types:

And of course there were the socialists opposing Howard's workplace reforms, promoting a student strike next week. And selling Che T-shirts to boot !

Inside, there was the registration.. why do people even think of bringing their kids to this ?

But inside, the hall probably only had around 200 guests. For all the hype, it was a pretty poor turnout.

But look who was sitting on stage getting her speech ready !! The celebrity peace-mom herself ! Wow, can I have your autograph ?

Then the show got started. The evening was hosted by a lady from the Moreland Peace Group who started with the following:

Before I introduce the speakers, I'd like to acknowledge that we are on aboriginal land. This is Wurrindjuri land... Unfortunately we haven't got a representative of the indigenous people to give welcome to the country this evening. Its really important to acknowledge that the aboriginal people never surrendered their land, and we encourage them to continue to fight as they've always fought, and we've agreed with their statement that this always was and always will be aboriginal land. I would like to add, also, that I would think all of us would condemn the recent action of the state government to remove the tent embassy from Kings Domain, Melbourne. [LOUD APPLAUSE]. That tent was an inspiration to all of us.

Anyway, next she introduced the first guest, ageing American hippy Joe Dolce who had to be seen to be believed:

Joe was introduced as someone who"has been a singer an activist all his life". First up he sang a little tribute to Coretta Scott King (Martin Luther King Jr's wife) during those "bad civil rights days". The lyrics are here. Next he toned up the rhetoric and sang us a sad song called Gift about an Iraqi child being bombed and crushed beneath stones - lyrics here.

Then he switched to a small ukelele for his final act.

"Believe it or not, this song was actually banned in America after 9-11".

He then went on to sing John Lennon's "Imagine". The audience hummed along and sang in zombie unison. And I'm supposed to believe this song is banned in America now ?