|Danza Mexica Cuauhtemoc Aztec dance group perform on Broadway in downtown L.A. earlier this month (Don Bartletti/latimes.com) MORE PHOTOS|
|This "Mayan calendar" is an Aztec creation|
Dancing to oppose police brutality or support the civil rights of gays is all part of the routine for the hardest-working group in Southern California's left-leaning protest circuit.
The Aztecs march in the canyons of the great city.Their tall feather headdresses jut skyward. They beat drums, stomp, and chant. They dance in twirls and high steps, moving forward.
|(Ehecatl, dios del viento)|
Before them at this demonstration between the high-rises of downtown Los Angeles come other tribes of the counterculture: anarchists, [peace-activists,] socialists, communists, anti-imperialists, Marxists. They don't dance.
|It's Latin-Irish rebel Che Guevara|
With them it's all bullhorns, mohawks, Imperial Stormtrooper outfits, Che Guevara shirts, [fake "Anonymous" movement/alleged Occupy Wall Street symbol] Guy Fawkes masks, and banners that flap in the wind -- such as "Smash Imperialist Wars" and "One World Government [=] New World Order." One man breaks off from the group like a herald to peddle a $1 copy of "Revolution." The people ignore him.
No one ignores the Aztecs. Crowds press close, pulling out iPhones and cameras. The Aztecs have an entourage. They use their arms to keep the crowd at a safe distance, like security behind the line of a red carpet.
|Dancing at the end of the world -- Dec. 21, 2012 -- Mayan celebration for the plumed serpent (naga) Kukulkan at Chichen Itza (ABC.net.au)|
At one point during their performance, an intoxicated woman with bleached blond hair stumbles up to the Aztecs' leader, Judith Garcia, and does a precarious, noodle-limbed dance. As the woman's tight blouse begins to roll down, revealing a tattoo... Just another day on the job for the hardest-working members of the leftist protest circuit. More
Carolyn Kellogg, LATimes.com (BOOK REVIEW)
|Responsible, individualist anarchy for all?|
Time-travel to 1999, where a bohemian group lives in a utopia of countercultural protest. Despite its ambition, the story fails to cohere. The house at the center of Justin Taylor's The Gospel of Anarchy has the universals of bohemian communities: shared food, leftist politics, dropouts, some guy peeing in the yard. Yet it is also very specific -- to a place, Gainesville, Florida, and a time, 1999 -- to the degree that it has its own peculiar name... More