The Wedding March: Uninvited Guests
On 29 April, the streets around Westminster will be crowded with people eager to get a look at the happy couple and be part of what is being billed as an historic event. The guest list includes celebrities, politicians and six of their former flames, but there's one group of people who won't be welcome.
Parliament Square, where Westminster Abbey and the Houses of Parliament are located, has been home to a peace camp since anti-war campaigner Brian Haw set up there in 2001, and has become an unofficial London landmark. But in the run-up to the Royal Wedding, the powers that be have been trying to shut it down.
If the Greater London Authority and Westminster Council have their way, the protesters will be removed and fined £1,000. Unluckily for them, their court hearing has been set for 9 May, meaning that whatever the outcome, Haw and his fellow activists will have ringside seats for the wedding.
Although the camp is likely to be blocked from view of television cameras by the members of the military who will be lining the procession route, its presence is a minor victory. At the heart of the flag-waving, patriotic masses who will be out in force next week will be 14 tents, along with placards and pictures of war victims courtesy of a small but dedicated group of people putting their ideals ahead of their personal comforts by engaging in peaceful protest.
It's ironic that the very authorities boasting about the number of people who plan to camp out to catch a glimpse of our future king are desperate to remove the protesters legally occupying Parliament Square. We're told time and again that the eyes of the world will be on London next Friday. If that's true, then I want the world to see who we really are.
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