OBSERVER A Journal of Free Voices A Window to the South May 29, 1970 Austin Austin witnessed the largest anti-war parade, perhaps the largest parade, in the state’s history May 8. A federal injunction, granted after marchers already had started a slow, two-by-two meander down city sidewalks, allowed the protesters to take to the street. And what many had feared would be a violent confrontation turned into a jubilant affirmation of America’s first amendment freedoms. Parade participants were estimated at between 10,000 and 25,000. It was an unqualified success, yet many young veterans of the peace effort speculated that the march might have been not only the largest but the last of Austin’s protest parades. A few weeks ago the Vietnam Moratorium Committee closed its. Austin’s Last March? central office, and pronounced the era of the mass demonstration dead. Many persons here argued that marches and the mock heroics they engender alienate the uncommitted rather than impress them. They argued that the march should be abandoned in favor of less dramatic, more effective person to person ex changes. President Nixon’s invasion of Cambodia and the deaths of five students during a Kent State University protest against the war brought more University of Texas students and professors into the protest movement than ever before. One campus politician guessed that half of the persons who marched in the parade had never participated in a protest before. The UT strike began the day after the shootings at Kent State. Students held an impromptu on-campus parade, and it
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