I am guessing dad is a war vet since the front of the marching line was reserved for “veterans for peace” I have received comments from quite a few people that find it inappropriate for parents to subject their children to protest because they believe children have no idea what is going on and what it means. So far 100% of the people that have written me about the sour taste it leaves in their mouth have no children themselves. I am of the opinion that parents teach their children about the things they believe in, like religion and their fundamental beliefs. The biggest reason people give me for it being wrong is that they believe children need to form their own beliefs. I was born Catholic and brought up Fundamentalist Christian or “Born Again”. Today I have a completely different belief system even though my mother taught me what she believed. Children are smarter then we give them credit for. I think we can all agree that they are fearful about their future and holding a sign may be one way of keeping hope. One more thing I’d like to bring up is that there are children carrying and using guns around the world to fight, kill, and die for what they are told too. If you are so worried about children, I’d start with the gun toting tots, not the sign holding ones. You can also view this photo at deviantART
Edit After posting this photo I received an email from the father in this photo and I'd like to post what he wrote to me...
I am not a war vet, my uncle was a marine & my cousin was brown
water navy- both in Vietnam, the latter died there. I’ve worked with
northwest veterans for peace since the elder bush's war in Iraq. I am
concerned with veteran’s issues, though not a vet. Twenty-five years
ago a friend, a Vietnam combat vet, convinced me not to join the army
just shy of completing the enlistment process. I remain grateful to
him to this day. My friends in NWVP invited me to march with them on
the 19th, which is why we were where we were.
As regards my son. He was there because he asked to go with me, he wound up on my shoulders because he wanted to carry a sign & I was to help carry the NWVP banner. I had promised him that he could ride my shoulders part of the way anyway so he could see- this was the first time he had gone to an anti war march. You are absolutely correct that children are smarter than many give them credit for being. Your statement rings true; frequently those without children underestimate them the most. My 7 year old wanted to express his feelings about the war. While it is obvious that my opinions are bound to color his to some degree, he made the choices to go & to carry a sign & was profoundly moved by the experience. Please feel free to share this info as regards the photo.
WHAT: Protest marking the 3 year anniversary of the US lead Iraq invasion
WHERE: Waterfront Park in Portland, Oregon
WHEN: March 19th 2006