It was my shorthand for people who took part in quite a few peace marches, maybe civil rights marches in the 1960s. Not necessarily the druggie, Haight Ashbury types--"not that there's anything wrong with that," or the "Can you spare some change?" group.
The persistent demonstrators could have been accountants, for all I know. I do know for certain that some were doctors and lawyers. And members of the military, etc. And some kids of multimillionaires, too.
The ones I mean are the ones who believe with 100% certainty that they fought the peace and civil rights battles for 5, 10, 15 years and finally won. When I tell them maybe it only looked as though they won, maybe the same things would have happened if they stayed home, they get furious. I don't blame them.
Same thing for those who go to a lot of demonstrations today, though most demonstrations today seem kind of puny. Even those who don't demonstrate, but keep telling us to call the White House or sign this internet petition or call our Rep. If any of that did anything, the bill that went to Baucus would have had a public option.
No one seems to want to even consider for a minute that they may need to change their M.O. What was good enough for the 1960s (or so it seemed) is going to do wonders in 2009-2016 and maybe forever. Or so they seem to think.
Um, how is it been working for us, so far? If I ask, that, someone will point to some vote or other of his or her rep. However, that doesn't mean the rep changed his or her vote because of calls and internet petitions. It was how the rep was going to vote all along.
Not to mention the damned D.C. kabuki. "Here, Emma, this vote is going to pass no matter what. You live in blue state, so go ahead and vote No. " or "Gee, the Dems out there want this vote to pass, but screw that. Let's make sure it's damn close, though, so it's looks like we REALLY tried. If you are in a solid blue state, or very, very popular, vote no and help out your fellow Dems in the pale blue states who have to vote yes or get primaried next time."
Anyway, the bottom line is, whatever did or did not work in the Sixties, that was a long time ago. It's not working today, so we have to find things that might work. At that point almost everyone is pissed at me and I get reamed as negative. Why? Because I think we should stop doing things that don't work and try to think of things that might?