I was holding off on writing about this one because a Star reporter covered the Cindy Sheehan event (I'm told), but I didn't find the article so this post will have to suffice for a description of the evening's activities.
When a local Tea Party group got wind of her visit, it quickly assembled a team of protesters and descended upon the Unitarian Universalist Church in Ventura last Thursday in a show of support for the troops. Sheehan, whose son was killed in Iraq in 2004, is an outspoken critic of the wars in the Middle East.
If Sheehan stopped there, I'm sure she'd engender nothing but sympathy and respect from the Tea Party. But she's taken it a thousand steps further than that, turning conspiracy theorist and verbal bomb-thrower.
She had a book to promote, which tackles American "myths," hence her appearance in Ventura.
A Tea Party organizer told me that the police were notified of the protest ahead of time, which is the responsible thing to do, and she met with a church official. The protesters may have surprised the Sheehan supporters in their demonstration, but fortunately there were no ugly incidents--save a drive-by one-finger salute directed at the Tea Partiers.
Some of the protesters had served in the military or had children that had served or recently returned. One of them held a sign that said "It honor of Casey," a respectful reference to Sheehan's deceased son. Another said, "Freedom isn't Free." I find that a little dicier because nobody knows that better than Sheehan--she doesn't need to be told.
But she does need to see opposition to the statements she's made about the country. She may have missed the message, as it appeared she waited for the protest to disperse before leaving the building.
Photo courtesy of Ventura County NGTTIA