Written by Will Freeman, Abigail Bessler and Adam Peck
When Col. Harry Riley announced his plan for an Operation American Spring, he sought to evoke the same kind of populist uprising that toppled regimes in the Middle East, protests that were collectively given the moniker Arab Spring.
And while the photos that poured in from Tahrir Square were incredible, depicting tens of thousands of people in the streets, the pictures from American Spring were…less so:
The “second American revolution” got off to a slow start in Washington, D.C. on Friday, falling roughly 9,999,950 people short of their goal of 10 million angry, constitution-weilding participants. (That was the low-end estimate. They were prepared for upwards of 30 million).
The few who did make it to Washington, D.C. came with a laundry list of grievances, ranging from Benghazi, to Obamacare, to President Obama’s birth certificate, to general lawlessness.
“Our main goal is to return our government to the constitutional government,” said Marty Church, a protestor who traveled to Washington, D.C. from the Maryland suburbs. “The whole administration is based on lies,” added Fred Lachance, another protester from Maryland.
“Benghazi’s a lie and a cover-up,” said Church. “And if you’re lying about something as stupid as that, what else are you lying about?”
Wiley Drake, a pastor and talk radio host from California, knows the truth behind the Benghazi coverup.
“What caused Benghazi was a kidnapping gone awry from Barry Soetoro,” he said, referencing the name Birthers have ascribed to Obama based on a widely-circulated (and hastily photoshopped) Columbia University student ID. “He was going to kidnap Mr. Stevens, and he got killed in the process. That’s what really happened, that’s the truth.”
When pressed to cite other breaches of the constitution, one protestor referred us back to Operation American Spring’s website, which offers little more than an outline of the group’s three-phased mission (Phase 2 calls for 1 million of the 10 million gathered to camp out in Washington, D.C. until their demands are met).
Those demands — removing Obama, Biden and Nancy Pelosi from the federal government — are not achievable ones even according to many of the attendees. “It’s a good goal, but it’s not a realistic goal,” said Lachance. Others, though, were more optimistic.
“The Obama administration is lawless, and we want him out,” said Carrie “Beth” Koncar, who led a small group up from Georgia. “And basically that is the goal here, for the resignation of Obama, Biden, Pelosi. The Lord God is behind this, the Lord is the breath in this. He puts kings and kingdoms in their places, and he takes them down.”
As for the paltry turnout, several attendees could barely contain their dismay at the low-key affair. “I took a day off from work to come down,” said Art Skillman. “Where they are, I don’t know.”
This post originally appeared on ThinkProgress
Photo Credit: LukeBrinker via Twitter
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