With her five-year-old daughter Andrea on her lap, Christine Mains of Spanish Lake sits next to the road, about a football field away from the other protesters and that much closer to the plant. It is a tiny act of defiance, tolerated by police, who take no action when she refuses an officer's request to join the other demonstrators. "I refused to move and I stood my ground and I sat right there and I told him if he wanted to move me, he would have to move me physically," Mains later recalls. "I'm standing on my convictions and my First Amendment rights. I had a right to be there. I was on public property."
She'll be there on Saturday.
Suddenly the protesters head back toward the plant. The police follow along, making no attempt to stop the marchers until they try crossing McDonnell Boulevard to reach the entrance to Boeing administrative offices. The cops stop them on a narrow concrete median in the middle of the street.
"You have one of two choices: Go back across the street or be arrested," Jackson says. Most turn around and head toward a nearby parking lot where the cops say they can stay. But Mains remains on the median.
"You're blocking a street," Jackson warns. "You're also endangering the welfare of a child." Mains sits down, her arms around Andrea as a half-dozen officers move in. Patience on both sides has expired.
An officer snatches Andrea from her mother's arms and carries the child to a squad car. She's bawling, as is her mother. "No!" Mains screams. "She's five years old!" Mains goes limp as the cuffs go on, forcing officers to carry her to a patrol car while her daughter, tears streaming, is sped away. Mains will spend the next six hours in police custody. She goes home facing charges of failure to comply with a lawful order, resisting arrest, endangering the welfare of a child and peace disturbance. The cops, she says, originally tried citing her for blocking a street but changed the charge to peace disturbance because police had already closed the street in preparation for Bush's appearance.
Matthew Carroll-Schmidt at 9:25 PM