- The Washington Times - Friday, September 27, 2002

This weekend, the adolescent activists protesting against the World Bank and International Monetary Fund will make their annual appearance on the streets of Washington. While many of the protesters are simply clueless college students anxious to duck the herculean academic demands required for a degree in English Lit, there is also an ugly, violent fringe element determined to disrupt society and dedicated to doing so by any means necessary.

One of the most frightening examples of the latter mentality is "The Anti-Capitalist Scavenger Hunt," which awards points for wrecking things 500 for trashing the inside of a retail store, 300 for smashing a McDonald's window and 75 for puncturing a police car's tire.

Judging from the list, the scary scavengers' sense of morality is as skewed as their sense of logic. Flinging a pie at a corporate CEO or government official is accorded the same number of points as putting together an article about a major corporation (one wonders how many black-clothed, gas-mask-wearing anarchists will be seen typing up papers instead of throwing punches at police). Blocking a street intersection is worth as much as picking up trash from the street.

Chuck, the anarchist webmaster who posted the scavenger hunt, said it was only a joke. Perhaps he and his urban terrorist friends are the only ones who are laughing, since a click away from his site is the home page of the Anti-Capitalist Convergence, which complains, "The last two mass demonstrations in Washington, D.C. have been almost completely void of direct action" a phrase referring to acts ranging from spray-painting billboards to burning down buildings.

Disrupting traffic, smashing windows and trashing the inside of stores must not be tolerated. While legitimate, lawful protests have long occupied an important place in public discourse, the active participants in the anarchist scavenger hunt have no place in the conversation or the nation's capital.

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