Or, Four Easy Emails

One to your U. S. Senator
One to your other U. S. Senator
One to your U. S. Representative
One to your U. S. President (president@whitehouse.gov)

Here’s the plan: on Wednesday, February 26, 2003, U.S. Citizens are encouraged to take part in a Virtual March by emailing, faxing or phoning their elected representatives in the nation’s capital and telling them that they oppose the current plan to invade Iraq. Millions of concerned citizens will use the best of modern technology to reinforce the impressive work of actual peace marchers last Saturday, February 15, 2003.

Some may criticize the “virtualness” of these efforts, but I contend that every little bit of pressure applied helps. Certainly the Bush Administration has been on the defensive since last weekend’s worldwide protest against their ill-considered plans. This is a perfect way for elderly, shut-in, snowed-in, agoraphobic or just plain lazy activists to keep the pressure on.

Please note:The peace organization MoveOn claims that phone calls and faxes to these offices are even more effective. You can go to their website and register to be part of their campaign to call each office once a minute, keeping the protest forcefully sustained throughout the day. (http:/www.moveon.org/winwithoutwar/)

This from MoveOn’s website regarding Thursday’s upcoming Virtual March:

”And on that day, "antiwar rooms" in Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles will highlight the day's progress for the national media, while local media can visit the "antiwar room" online to monitor this constituent march throughout the day.

With your help, every Senate office switchboard will be lit up all day with our anti-war messages. This will be a powerful reminder of the breadth and depth of opposition to a war in Iraq.

To get your Congressman’s email address go to: http://www.house.gov/house/MemberWWW.html

To get your Senator’s email address go to: http://www.senate.gov/

White House Switchboard: 202-456-1414

I intend to revise this node with news on how the day went.

PS If you are part of the strange, strangely silent minority that completely supports the Bush Administration’s current plan to unilaterally employ violence to overthrow the Iraqi regime, I still encourage you to speak up and email, phone or fax your elected official. Stand and be counted. Democracy is for the fool-hardy as well as the wise.

From the day of the march...

Postscript 1 (9:21 PST): Just went to MoveOn's Online Virtual March Headquarters http://www.moveon.org/onlinehq/index_04.html They say the call count is 170,744 at this moment and going up like gangbusters every minute. Whether yer fer this thing or agin' it, I highly recommend checking out this site. It's really pretty frickin' cool.

Postscript 2 (13:35 PST):

This from The New York Times: The Mall was quiet, but the switchboard on Capitol Hill was swamped today as anti-war protesters conducted what they called the first "virtual march" on Washington. The organizers, a coalition called Win Without War, said that hundreds of thousands of people were sending messages by email, fax and telephone to the Senate and the White House....

This from Reuters: Hundreds of thousands of opponents of a U.S. war against Iraq called and faxed their senators and the White House on Wednesday in a "virtual march on Washington," jamming many congressional telephone lines for several hours....

Tom Andrews, a former Democratic representative from Maine who is running the organization, said more than 500,000 people had signed up on the Internet to take part and a half a million more were also expected to participate without registering on the group's web site (Moveon.org)....

A Time/CNN poll conducted Feb. 19-20 found 54 percent said the United States should use military action to remove Iraqi President Saddam Hussein. The number was down 5 points from two weeks before and at its lowest level since last November. Thirty eight percent said they were opposed....

This from AP: The office of Sen. Peter Fitzgerald’s, R-Ill., received more than 100 calls an hour from people on both sides of the issue, said Fitzgerald's spokesman, Brian Stoller.

Dismiss it if you will, from either a policy perspective or a logistical one, but the Virtual March on Washington is getting covered by the major press, thus it is working.

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