Anti-war protests fizzle

Another anti-war group has given up.

The Northland Anti-War Coalition has been holding weekly protests at Lake Avenue and Superior Street nearly every Friday since 2007, the Duluth News Tribune says. But no more.

It held its break-up party yesterday.

“Every movement has to end. We didn’t want to be out there when the people driving by didn’t understand what we were protesting about,” said Adam Ritscher, an organizer for the coalition.

Ritscher says the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are officially over and it’s time to move on.

John Pegg, a member of the Twin Ports chapter of the national group Veterans for Peace who was active early on in Northland Anti-War Coalition efforts, said interest in anti-war events gradually lessened as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan wore on year after year.

“It’s very hard to keep up public interest in something. And it’s hard to keep our energy going in something every week. It wears on everyone. There are other issues that come up,” Pegg said.

But, like other anti-war activists, Pegg, a Vietnam veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, said he’s not done. The Twin Ports chapter of Veterans for Peace is planning its annual April 15 tax day protest to draw attention how much of the federal budget goes to the “military-industrial complex.”

“We’ll be out there again on tax day,” he said.