Peaceful protest

March 20, 2007

The signs of protest clutched by regular demonstrators at Bristol Street and Anton Boulevard in Costa Mesa were replaced by candles Monday evening as about 40 community members gathered to commemorate the fourth anniversary of the war in Iraq.

Sponsored by, the vigil aimed to honor American troops and Iraqis who have been killed or wounded since the invasion, and demonstrate opposition to the conflict.

"There has to be a common knowledge that there are a lot of people who are opposed to this war," said Natasha Hull-Richter, 15, whose family organized the demonstration. "Somebody has to be out here demonstrating that."


Though turnout at the Friday night demonstrations the Hull-Richters have organized and attended since 2003 fluctuates between 10 and 75 people, the supportive honking of passing cars has steadily increased with time, she said.

Jason and Alicia Crump of Costa Mesa and Kindra Britt of Newport Beach decided the anniversary was a good opportunity to protest for the first time.

"The whole war — the stupidity of the whole thing — is such a waste of time and resources," Jason Crump said. "We definitely support the troops and appreciate their service, but enough is enough."

"If this has an impact on anybody driving by, then I think it is worth it."

Posted signs also expressed support for 2008 Democratic presidential hopeful Dennis Kucinich.

"Kucinich is the only candidate who has continually voted against war funding," said Natasha's mother Ruth Hull-Richter, a Santa-Ana based attorney. "He has become much more powerful since the 2004 elections."

— Jessie Brunner

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