With road closures and airtight security, last Thursday’s christening of the George W. Bush Presidential Center at SMU affected commuters from Oak Cliff to Richardson and beyond. Then again, it isn’t every day that five U.S. Presidents pop into Dallas to commemorate a man and a structure sharing his name.
Naturally, hosting five POTUSi stirred contempt in the hearts of some.
While most of the nation’s cameras were trained on the star-studded gala at SMU, we took a gander about 100 yards opposite Central Expressway, where some 200 protesters objected to war on terror-related consequence.
Masked protesters silently confronted well-dressed attendees en route to the ceremony while surveilled by cops, rooftop sharpshooters and (conspicuous) undercover agents.
A rally followed with speakers including Phil Donahue — yes, the Phil Donahue. Afterward, the protesters shuffled toward the Mockingbird bridge, which they had been told they could cross.
But that didn’t happen.
The “Death March” was met by a police blockade. Frustration and conjecture shot through the crowd. A megaphone. Chanting. Drums. A scuffle ignited between protesters and police. To the clatter of camera shutters, two men dressed in bobble-headed effigy, as George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, were subdued and cuffed. It was too poetic a protester’s refrain.
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