Tuesday, July 04, 2006
Vigilantes bring race hate to Palisades parade
Patti Page was grand marshal, Love Boat captain Gavin MacLeod was honorary mayor, and actual Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa pressed the flesh and waved to the crowds, but it was The Minutemen vigilante group who turned the Pacific Palisades Fourth of July Parade into a culture clash.
The goofy, ragtag, anti-immigration border "watchdogs" somehow wangled a spot into the usually noncontroversial parade, causing jeers, catcalls and arguments along the route up Sunset Boulevard and into a posh neighborhood-- while several of its skinhead members intimidated neighbors by videotaping those who voiced opposition.
The Minutemen and women, in three-cornered hats, waving American flags and frankly, appearing for the most part to be a clarinet or two short of a marching band, were trailed by masked protesters who banged drums and chanted, “SOS, KKK, racist Minutemen, go away,” and a heavy police detail. They were met by an assortment of cheers and boos from Palisadians, while many had no idea who they were or why they were marching.
Meanwhile, a beefy half of the John & Ken hate radio team (above-- we think it was Ken), who've supported the Minutemen and other right wing extreme groups while doing their best to stir up hatred in their anti-immigrant and racist radio tirades, was also featured in the parade. He demonstrated his radio wimpiness by keeping his distance from the uproar he helped create, riding far ahead of the Minuteman contingent, safely in a car surrounded by children, doing his best (and failing, above) to ignore boos and catcalls along the parade route.
L.A. mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (right) at the Pacific Palisades July Fourth parade.