So, in addition to the things I've written previously, I want to note for the record that protesters like me on sight. Not everyone usually does. I'm not the sort of person who comes by protests often, but they really appreciated that I was there. They were vocal about it.
Whole years go by without someone complimenting my appearance, but I had a pretty young lady come up and shake my hand emphatically. "You're just so cool," she said.
At the Black Men for Bernie protest, one of the Black Men for Bernie came up to me and said, "What's up, my brother with the best beard ever?" He proved, in a few seconds conversation, to have accurately guessed that I'd been to Iraq. I'm not sure what he was picking up on -- I wasn't wearing my "Baghdad Summer Camp" T-shirt.
I also met a very nice, older lesbian couple who had spent their younger years as trappers in the north, and were now raising exotic plant species. They were great fun to talk to, worried about corporate influence on our elections but very much in favor of the freedom to wander the forests.
There was also a reporter I met from Australia, who said he was working for their version of VICE. He was a fun guy to hang out with and swap stories. His opinion was that these protests were proof that, for the first time in a while, personal character had become a real issue in an American Presidential election. The rise of third parties wasn't mostly about ideology, but about the fact that both major party nominees were really bad people.
He was right about that, I think. For a while, I was carrying a sign somebody gave me that read, "Which Liar Do You Trust?"
It does seem to be the relevant question this year.