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September 21 (part 1) Monday, October 30, 2006

Tom Hastings (sitting, second from left) explains his opinions about the war in Iraq to other peace demonstrators in front of the World Trade Center in Portland on Sept. 21. The group sat in front of the escalators after being refused admission to the building. They wanted to meet with Sen. Gordon Smith.

After I got back from my trip to Canada, I realized that it had been quite a while since I shot anything really newsy. So I looked up my usual sources and, sure enough, there were more war protests planned. These ones were timed to coincide with the UN International Day of Peace. There were demonstrations across the country, but they weren't anywhere near as large as the ones in March. This group—a collection of hardcore peace activists and students from Lewis & Clark University—congregated outside the World Trade Center in Portland, where Sen. Gordon Smith (R-Ore.) has his office. I don't think there were even 50 people. After chanting a while outside the building, a smaller delegation planned to go inside to meet the Senator, or at least his representatives. Security wouldn't let them in the building, though, so they sat down in front of the main escalators and talked and sang some more. After about an hour of waiting for something to happen, I left to see what was going on in Vancouver. More about that in part 2.