Wednesday, April 29, 2009

2000: Chris Medlock--Protester

Found some interesting video when cleaning out my dying computer's hard drive and decided to use it as my first foray into uploading video to YouTube.

It is from a KOTV Channel 6 report on a spontaneous rally that occurred in November, 2000, just as the Florida Recount in the presidential election of that year was hitting the fan. There was no Twitter, no Facebook and no blogging at that time. The only talk radio in town was KRMG, and since this was a Sunday, they couldn't play a role in organizing such a rally, even if John Erling had been so inclined. As such, there was only e-mail, and yet it managed to get a small, if not boisterous crowd assembled on the downtown Civic Center Plaza for a one hour protest. Imagine how many would have been there with today's technology.

There were lots of "Sore/Loserman" signs in the crowd, of course mimicking the Gore/Lieberman yard signs that had been used by the Democrats during the campaign. State Chairman Steve Edwards is interviewed in the KOTV story, and I remember Tulsa County Chairman Rich Gradel being present, too.

If you look in the background when the lady in the red sweatshirt is seen chanting, you can see me and my wife Cheryl (she's wearing sunglasses). We had no plans on doing any protesting that day, but when doing yard work (I think we might have been putting out Christmas lights) my neighbor Don Onesky, who was the former State GOP Vice-Chair and I got to talking and decided to head on down to join the fun. In fact, Don and I ended up doing a lot of the organizing of the chants. Were you there? Comment if you were.

At the end of the story, you can see video of the lone Gore supporter, a homeless guy who seemed to have been ignoring the Lord's desire not to be imbibing in the 'holy spirits" on the Sabbath. At one point in the demonstration, as this guy was hollering back at the Bush supporters from across Denver Ave., some of the crowd crossed the street to shout him down. It was actually a bit ugly and I was surprised KOTV didn't show the incident. Nobody threatened the guy, but it made him look sympathetic.

Attendees of this month's Downtown Tulsa Tea Party will recognize the location of the protest. It is on the very ground from which the Tea Party speakers addressed the crowd on April 15th. It is also the very site from which the Gang of Four on the Tulsa City Council held a counter State-of-the-City rally in 2004.

At the time of the protest, I was two years away from being elected to the City Council and would never have dreamed that I would have had a talk radio show. I love the fact that the CG on the screen refers to me as "Chris Medlock--Protester." Oh well, once an activist, always an activist?

Enjoy the video. Or not, if you voted for Gore.

Viewing the interview with me, I'm left with the feeling that I need to work harder at the gym and give up Pizza Night.

Both KOTV and KTUL showed up to cover the event. I thought I also had a copy of the KTUL piece and will look to post it if I can find it.

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