Military Veterans Storm The Monuments

After removing the last barriers at the Lincoln Memorial, a veteran insists in planting a flag as as high as he can.  Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
After removing the last barriers at the Lincoln Memorial, a veteran insists in planting a flag as as high as he can. Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
War veterans from as far back as the Second World War showed up to support the opening of the nation's war memorials.  Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
War veterans from as far back as the Second World War showed up to support the opening of the nation’s war memorials. Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
During the demonstration, Park Police were everywhere, but always maintained their composure.  Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
During the demonstration, Park Police were everywhere, but always maintained their composure. Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
Only a brief scuffle took place when veterans started removing the remaining barriers at the Lincoln Memorial.  Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
Only a brief scuffle took place when veterans started removing the remaining barriers at the Lincoln Memorial. Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
A veteran carries one of the barriers away while a local Park Ranger tries to ignore him.  Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
A veteran carries one of the barriers away while a local Park Ranger tries to ignore him. Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
A silent statement was made by a double-amputee veteran.  Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.
A silent statement was made by a double-amputee veteran. Leica M240, Zeiss 35mm f/2 Biogon T* ZM.

There is a phenomena that regularly takes place in Washington, DC that is perhaps rare in other parts of the country.  To put it as simply as I can, it goes like this: as the bureaucrats leave the District for the weekend, the protesters move in to occupy its streets.  The movement in and out of the capital resembles the movement of the waves, where the ocean must first recede before waves come back to the shore in force.  Such was the case this weekend when thousands of military veterans stormed the DC Mall’s memorials to make the point that citizens should never be denied access to our nation’s monuments.  From what my camera could see from the middle of the crowd, it all took place in an orderly (albeit sometimes tense) fashion.  Only one brief scuffle took place at the Lincoln Memorial when some of the veterans insisted in taking a section of a barrier from the hands of a Park Police Officer, but after some shoving took place and a nightstick made its appearance, everyone seemed to calm down.  But as better heads prevailed, the barriers were removed (to be dumped later in front of the White House) and the crowd made its way up the Lincoln Memorial.  It wasn’t exactly the liberation of France, but it was readily obvious the nation’s veterans know a thing or two about breaking down barriers and occupying the high ground, no matter the cost.  The days when they wore the uniform may be long gone, but you wouldn’t known from the way so many of them dragged their once able bodies to keep pace with their younger brethren on their way to bring down those metal barriers.  I’m sure that President Lincoln, sitting there looking at all that was taking place at his feet today, was probably repeating some of his most famous words to the nation’s veterans: “Be sure you put your feet in the right place, then stand firm.”  And that’s what they did, Mr. President.