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Related Story XmasParade04

Small Victories denied permit to participate in Holiday Parade 
(Story From the Belleville News Democrat newspaper)
November 2004


Small Victories denied permit to participate in holiday parade 

BY JENNIFER KAPIOLANI SAXTON

GRANITE CITY -- As folks watched the annual Santa Claus parade Saturday, anti-abortion demonstrators who were denied a chance to march stood on the corner of Niedringhaus and Madison avenues.

"I don't think this is the time or the place for them to display all of this," said Mary Barchesky of Granite City, who brought several of her grandchildren to the parade.

In October, the organization Small Victories was denied a city permit to participate in the parade, which usually has 70-80 floats.

Angela Michael of Highland, director of Small Victories, said that because the group was denied, members chose to hold up signs nearby depicting pictures of babies.

"Since this is celebrating the Christ child, we're celebrating children,"Michael said.

No trouble was reported in connection with the presence of the protesters.

During the annual Labor Day parade in September, Small Victories members stood at the same corner with signs that included a picture of an aborted fetus. Many said at the time they were offended or disturbed by the pictures.

"They were the most disturbing signs I've seen in my life," said Granite City High School band director Wyatt Roberds. "Next year, I'm sure we won't march in the Labor Day parade. I don't know about this parade, but I have to protect my kids."

Roberds said he had reservations about marching in the parade Saturday because of the pictures at the last parade.

"My 4-year-old adopted son was marching next to me in the parade that day and pointed to the signs and asked me what they were," Roberds said. "How do you explain that to a 4-year-old?"

Mary Lynch of Granite City, who attended the parade with her family, said with the number of kids at the parade, it was not the proper time or place to interject such a politically charged issue such as abortion.

"I think there is a time and place, but not out here at the Christmas parade," Lynch said. "There's too many little kids running around and they are asking questions."

Granite City is home to the Hope Clinic, the metro-east's only abortion clinic.

To support and encourage Daniel and Angela please contact them - 
smallvictories@juno.com (email), 618-654-5800 (phone), 
or write them; Small Victories P.O. Box 143 Highland, IL 62249.