The Smedley D. Butler Brigade of the Veterans for Peace hosted and organized the Saint Patrick’s Day Peace Parade in Boston this year. When its request to march with the Allied War Veterans in the ‘traditional’ St. Patrick’s Day Parade was denied, as it has been in previous years, the organizers pulled a permit, and reached out to other groups! The William Ladd Chapter of Veterans for Peace came from Maine, New Hampshire’s Chapter, and the Colonel Jeffrey M. Luce Cape Cod Chapter of Veterans for peace marched to the music of the Leftist Marching Band, with some family members carrying enlarged photos of their loved ones who had been lost to war, to honor their memories. The Military Survivors Family organization marched as well.
St. Patrick was a man of peace, and would probably not smile at the tanks bristling with guns marching in his name; but I hope the joy and life and music of the St. Patrick’s Day Peace Parade would make him smile! In fact, a stand in for St. Patrick marched, chasing the “snakes” of racism, sexism, and greed away!
Occupy Boston, Occupy Holyoke, Occupy Quincy, and Occupy Everywhere answered the call as well. Colorful banners, Occupy drummers, and giant puppets marched in the bright sun.
The LGBT community marched, the group that most closely rivaled the Veterans for Peace in size. Their joy at being in the parade, together, and marching was a joy to behold. JoinTheImpactMA had a wonderful banner and decorated trolley.
Several churches marched in the Peace Parade as well. Among them were the Wellesley Friends Meeting Quakers, The Peace Abbey, and Theodore Parker Church of Roxbury.
The only political party to join in the march was the Green Rainbow Party.
Richard Smith and his wife Ann drove at the head of the parade in an open convertible, with a joyous and very senior member of the Veterans for Peace, Severyn Bruyn, leading the way!
More than a thousand revelers marched through the streets of Boston to joyful drumming and the playing of a brass band, with most bystanders making the peace sign and applauding.
Article by Deborah Sirotkin Butler