AMERICANS BOOT PRESIDENT BUSH OUT OF THE WHITE HOUSE
WHEN: Monday, January 19th at 11:00 a.m. ET
WHERE: Rally begins at DuPont Circle, followed by a march to the White House with shoes and combat boots
On President Bush’s last day in office, people will gather at DuPont Circle in Washington, D.C., for an event entitled “Shoes for Bush.” The rally will feature David Swanson, the author of the forthcoming book “Daybreak: Undoing the Imperial Presidency and Forming a More Perfect Union.” He is also the creator of the progressive blog After Downing Street www.afterdowningstreet.org. Other speakers include Iraq veteran Adam Kokesh, who is a member of Iraq Veterans Against the War www.ivaw.org and Debra Sweet, anti-war leader and director of the organization World Can’t Wait www.worldcantwait.org.
After the rally participants will march to the White House with footwear to hurl. This action will be in the spirit of Iraqi Journalist Mutadhar Al-Zaidi who threw his shoes at President Bush during a press conference, and in solidarity with the people in Iraq and Afghanistan.
To show someone the sole of your shoe is considered an extreme sign of disrespect and many people feel this is an appropriate parting gesture, as President Bush leaves the White House and has not been held accountable for his impeachable offenses and war crimes.
Many veterans will be coming to Washington with their combat boots to hurl, such as Ward Reilly, a Veteran from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, who is on the advisory board of Iraq Veterans Against the War. The photo of his infantry boots with the names of Bush and Cheney, is featured on the web site for the event
“This action is of course a catharsis for folks who have watched in dismay as Bush and Cheney leave office with no impeachment proceedings, no criminal investigations, no accountability whatsoever for their actions at home and abroad. However, we are also making a statement for the whole world that we sympathize with Al-Zaidi’s actions as he acted on behalf of the widows, orphans, and all those killed in Iraq. People of conscience in America are deeply sorry for the illegal and immoral actions of President Bush who has acted like a reckless madman. This action may not take away the pain suffered during the Bush regime but the participants and observers alike will gain some satisfaction from the statement it makes,” says organizer Jamilla El-Shafei.
“We are hoping that the visual of hundreds if not thousands of people hurling shoes will go around the globe, and like the passing of a destructive storm, people throughout the world will let out a collective sigh of relief. It is the end of an error,” says Ms El-Shafei.
This event is organized with the support of the Washington Peace Center, After Downing Street, World Can’t Wait, IVAW D.C., Our Spring Break, The Kennebunks PEACE Department, The Backbone Campaign, Arrest Bush 2009, and other organizations and activists from across the country.
Organizer Jamilla El-Shafei, is from Kennebunk, Maine and has organized other national anti-war events including the STOP-LOSS CONGRESS action in March 2008, as well as the large, regional anti-Bush protests in Kennebunkport, Maine. She is the founder of The Kennebunks PEACE Department as well as the water justice organization Save Our Water www.soh2o.org