Peace Response banner drop action,
March 18-20, 2005
Peace Action made the call for statewide banner drops from highway
overpasses across the state between Friday, March 18, and Sunday, March
20, 2005, encouraging relative uniformity in message in keeping with the
occasion: END THE US OCCUPATION OF IRAQ; BRING THE TROOPS HOME NOW! The
plan was for people to do their banner drops during times of heavy traffic
for maximum visibility.
Resonse held a banner making party at Jamilla’s art studio in Kittery
after the Friday vigil. Nine of us, Jamilla, Vivian, Pat G., Wes, Doug,
Melissa, Jeff White, Cynthia and Dave painted four large banners at Jamilla's
art studio in Kittery on Friday night. There were two each of: "STOP THE
WAR AND BRING THE TROOPS HOME NOW" and "U.S. OUT OF IRAQ NOW!" We did
banner drops in Dover, over the Spaulding Tpke. on Saturday and Sunday
and in Greenland, over I-95, on Sunday.
On Saturday Doug,
Jamilla, Vivian, Wes, Pat G. and Dave met at the Dover vigil and did two
bridges over the Spaulding Tpke., the ones at Cataract Ave. near McIntosh
College and Washington St. Vivian and Dave were at the Washigton St. Bridge
and discovered that banners tied behind the wire mesh fence that's on
all New Hampshire overpasses are quite visible to traffice below, as we
climbed down the bank and looked for ourselves. Response was positive,
with lots of waves and honks. A member of the Seacoast Camera Club stopped
and took our picture, promising to send us a copy if they come out.
On Sunday, Cynthia,
Melissa and Dave did a banner drop at the Breakfast Hill Rd. overpass
over I-95 in Greenland between 3:30 and 5 pm. Breakfast Hill Rd. is accessible
from either Route 1 or Route 151. The traffic in the southbound lane (which
probably had a high proportion of Massachusetts cars) was very positive,
with people in half the cars waving and/or honking. The northbound lane
was less enthusiastic. The southbound land had the first of the above-noted
messages, which may have been more popular because of the mention of "troops."
We had a visit
from a state trooper who told us not to sit on the railing, as their dispatch
was flooded with calls from people thinking one of us was about to jump.
Actually, it was quite safe, but the people in the cars might not have
known that. The state trooper had no problem with our banners and left
after giving his order. The two banners we had went back to the Clean
Water Action office.
Pat G. and Wes
also did a banner drop on Sunday, going back to the spot near McIntosh
College in Dover where we all had been on Saturday. After they got the
banner up Pat went to get them some coffee and Wes did computations. He
figured that their banner was seen by one car per 2.335 seconds as there
were about 1500 cars for the time they were there. They were only on the
southbound lane and got a good reception. There were no "single digit
salutes" thru the sun roof that day. There seemed to be as many cars going
north as south the time period they were there but they only had one sign.
All in all, it
was a worthwhile activity, as our messages were seen by a large number
of people, and the feedback was good. Jamilla wrote that she would like
to see us do the banner drops every Saturday so that the traffic heading
North will see them and vice versa on Sunday.
Edited by David Diamond