WOODSTOCK IN WASHINGTON
To the Editors of the CRIMSON:
I beg to differ with your "News Analysis" of the Washington Mobilization (by Robert Krim, Tues., Nov. 18). The reporter seems to feel that there is a growing trend towards violence in the anti-war movement, or at least that the D.C. protest indicated that. On the contrary. I was struck by the overwhelming rejection of violence and of intolerance by the main body of the quarter million plus people at the March and rally.
There was definitely an aura of Woodstock over the vast and not-so-silent majority of the crowd. People were more willing than ever before to help each other out. And all this was in contrast to the up-tightness and lack of humanity shown by the government and police. The point is, we showed the government up for what it is by not falling for its tactics or being drawn into its game of violence, but rather by showing that men can work together without coercion, and there is an alternative to violence. Lenin thought that you could end oppression by oppressing the oppressors. It did not work for Lenin and it cannot work here either. The demonstration at the Dept, of Justice proved nothing except that in a test of strength, the police will win. We know that already.
The only real revolution will come when men's heads are changed so that they will no longer feel the need to use violence on other men. That is why the Revolutionary Contingent slogan of "2-4-6-8, Organize to smash the state" is so ridiculous: we would just have a new form of organized violence. What we really need is a liberation of minds, not a beating of heads. And for this you need more than a revolutionary vanguard-elite, but rather a large segment of the society. Isn't a revolution that alienates most of a population as unjust and immoral as the government it seeks to replace?