I was dismayed that the Sept. 25 front-page story "Antiwar Fervor Fills the Streets" quoted D.C. Police Chief Charles H. Ramsey's low estimate of how many people protested the Iraq war on Saturday. The numbers were awesome and impressive, especially considering we have no draft.

Hundreds of thousands of us showed that we feel this war is pointless and wrong. Yes, the march was inspired by marches of the 1960s, but it was infused with a spirit that is 100 percent 2005: Those of us who protested are proud Americans who do not believe that George W. Bush represents us, and we will never support this war.


Takoma Park


As The Post's coverage reflected, the antiwar march was a rich blend of people, including pierced, tattooed twenty- and thirty-somethings, families, and baby boomers.

But as a member of the fifty-something crowd, I didn't feel the energy of 30 years ago. Maybe it is nostalgia for the pulsating passion of the past, but after the march, during the "Operation Ceasefire" event, I was moved when Joan Baez sang. I hoped that the people born in the '80s would get it.

A contemporary group also belted out antiwar themes, Cindy Sheehan spoke and Steve Earle sang, but the crowd's enthusiasm was tame. Yes, there were cheers and applause. But I felt no adrenaline. The kids hung in small groups, smoking and laughing among themselves. But perhaps young people "get it" in a different way than we did in the '60s and '70s.

Fortunately, the police had nothing to do other than give directions.



Protesters march through downtown Washington Saturday.