The first day of the Republican Convention may have been stifled by the hurricane in the gulf, but protesters refused to let it stop their message. Whether anti-war, pro-universal health care, pro-choice, anti-choice, or anti-government in general, protesters packed the streets of St. Paul, Minnesota hoping to impact convention goers. The events were mostly peaceful but a small group of anarchists broke out store windows, police car windows, slashed tires, and caused a general ruckus. One RNC official at the press and media check in expressed his disappointment in police who he allowed much of the destruction. But one former 70's war protester who joined the events today said the police were much calmer than those in the 60's and 70's who he said were less patient. There were, however, live streaming videos
of police shooting tear gas into crowds, shooting people with rubber bullets, and huge blanket arrests. Despite those events, reports were that only 150 had been arrested, no word on how many have been detained. One thing is for sure, the use of policy and national guard troops was much more present on the streets of St. Paul than in Denver. While at the DNC convention, security was limited mostly to the parameter, many police and guard troops kept to the streets. There were minor injuries, many journalists were accidentally gassed including former campaign manager for Vice President Al Gore and CNN Consultant Donna Brazil, Democracy NOW reporter Amy Goodman was arrested, and many journalists were detained until they could prove they were official media. No word on whether these protests will continue throughout the course of the Republican Convention.