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Protesters: Support our Troops, But not the War

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November 15, 2007

Americus - - If you believe the polls, most Americans now oppose the war in Iraq. Some outspoken critics who say you can support the troops without supporting the war brought their protest to South Georgia. The State of Hope Tour is visiting nine cities in nine days. Americus was their 7th stop Thursday night

It's a small demonstration, but there message is loud and clear. They're tired of the war and they'll speak out as long as they have a reason to. 

If their song couldn't paint the picture for you, perhaps their flashy demonstrations and insignia would.

"It kind of frightens you because you wonder what's going on, what is this about?" said onlooker Susan Brown.

One protester guy clad in anti-war garb from head to toe stood on a street corner holding his message high for anyone who drove by. Many were at a loss for words.

"Well, it surprised me," said Oscar Simpson. 

That's the point.

"We've got an administration that says we support the troops, they wear American flag lapels, but they're not taking care of our troops needs," says Tim Franzen with The Georgia Peace and Justice Coalition.

His group is on a crusade to put an end to the war.

Demonstrators placed over 100 combat boots on the ground. It's symbolic. Each pair represents a Georgia soldier who died in Iraq.

"Each pair of boots has a name, an age, and the city that they're from and this illustrates the cost of war for Georgians," Franzen says.

There are also regular shoes scattered about. They represent the Iraqi civilians who also died.

"We really want to hold our politicians accountable and not let folks just wear 'support our troops' while putting our troops in harm's way on a war based on lies," Franzen said.

It's a peaceful protest. They didn't say much. They wanted their actions to speak for them.

"I do understand the protest....if we don't stand up for our country who will?" Brown said.

The American Friends Service Committee also teamed with the Coalition to put on this demonstration. The group has two more stops to make. They're headed to Macon and Columbus next. 

Members of Koinonia's farm community also came out to support the event. The demonstration wrapped up with an indie-folk music concert.  

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