never thought that I'd find myself at two o'clock in the morning,
hanging solo on a corner in uptown Charlotte, having two kind older
black women telling me to stop preaching about war and the prison
industrial complex. Yet there I was, one block from the Charlotte
Convention Center, hailing a taxi for two sixty-something Georgia
peaches who had missed the shuttle back to their motel.
wasn't a conspiracy that more protest news didn't come out of the
Republican National Convention. There weren't utterly significant
events to report, let alone a larger bloodbath for journalists to
hang a week of coverage on. Considering the circumstances,
authorities in Tampa weren't all that unreasonable; the few arrests
that did go down could have been avoided if protesters heeded simple
requests from cops.
2004 Democratic and Republican national conventions were all about
the bloggers. Mainstream reporters even wrote articles about their
scrappy young counterparts, who in turn provided some long overdue
alternative coverage to the mostly mundane quadrennial festivities.
Four years later it was Twitter that was red hot, though mostly only
insiders, reporters, and attendees took advantage of the service,
since it had yet to fully click with the American public.