Why I booed a wounded Iraq veteran at Lollapalooza...

At the end of Pearl Jam's performance to close out Chicago's annual Lollapalooza Music Festival in Grant Park, Eddie Vedder brought out a wounded Iraq War veteran to play on the crowds sympathy and build support for the anti-war movement, and as soon as he said the words, "...we need to end this illegal occupation in Iraq...", I couldn't help but break the crowd's respectful and attentive hush with the loudest BOOOOO I could muster.

Don't get me wrong, I respect that Marine as much as any other and I was not booing him, because clearly he has had an experience that I could never possibly understand, which is why I didn't start booing as soon as he started talking. My boos were meant for Eddie Vedder, who chose to turn my first Pearl Jam concert into my first peace rally, which is something I really don't appreciate.

Anyway, while booing and flashing W's (to show my respect for 'Dubya' and his policies) with both hands to the many thousands of dazed onlookers who I successfully distracted from the anti-war diatribe going on in front of us, I was suddenly bum rushed from behind by some extremely aggressive pacifists. Thankfully, I wasn't the only one in the crowd annoyed by the band's impromptu demonstration, so the hippies who took me on were quickly swept aside by my less vocal (but more rowdy) allies, while my friends wisely removed me from the situation while I still had my composure.

Interestingly, the pacifist started throwing punches at my new friends, which seemed to be counter-intuitive to the message of peace and reconciliation they had so passionately defended moments before. I learned just this evening that my friends didn't fair very well in the confrontation (which is the one thing I now regret the most). I am not going to judge them for letting their passions get the best of them, after all, I had just booed a paralyzed veteran because he was used as a conduit by a drunk rock star to trounce on my principles and generally exploit the vulnerable nature of his captivated audience. In fact, I think it is great that their are people who care as much as I do.

This is my first post in awhile because I have recently begun working during the day (like a big boy), but it is definitely the most interesting story I have had to tell in awhile, so I hope it was enjoyed. I know I might have overreacted, but I don't really care. Laura Ingram said it best when she entitled her book about politics and pop culture "Shut Up and Sing". Eddie Vedder, this means you!

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Lollapalooza Music Festival- 2007-08-03 2007-08-05

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