Speakers Corner in Downtown Kirkland

The corner of Kirkland Ave and Lake Street South

As a frequent pedestrian on the streets of downtown Kirkland, I enjoy seeing the street musicians, dog walkers and neighbors, diners and shoppers I see every day. Another group, however, I would be happy to never see again: campaigners. This past week I saw both the "Impeach Obama" / Lyndon LaRouche troupe and the Green Peace clipboard spinners politely canvasing the sidewalks of Lake Street between Central Way and Kirkland Ave. Planned Parenthood and the random union protesters must have missed the memo as they are also often here as well.

 Kirkland has become the favorite haunt of political campaigns too but they are usually smiling,  holding signs and waving at cars. They don't try to get your money or your signature so they are less of a nuisance. 

Now, as I exercise my free speech rights on these pages, I do not argue against others doing the same. I think the mix of political perspectives is invigorating and beneficial to our society. I just wish Kirkland had a town square or speakers corner for them to park rather than in front of Starbucks. I prefer my coffee without the "Can you spare a moment for Green Peace?" or "Can you help protect a womyn's right to choose?" or "Obama supports Nazi coup in Ukraine -- IMPEACH HIM".

I'm sounding cranky this morning. I guess I had better finish my first cup of coffee. I think I'll go to St. James for coffee today. At St. James I know the politics are discussed on the inside of the coffee shop where it belongs rather than on the street.

I enjoy a good political discussion as much or more than the next guy. But I prefer mine to be over a cup of coffee or a beer, rather than on a sidewalk. Call me old fashioned.