#HCR passage will prove, once again, that street protests are pretty ineffective. It was time for Cons to learn that lessonI'm not sure they were totally ineffective here. No, the protests didn't stop health reform from passing, but they did slow it down for a while, and they reinforced total GOP opposition (although that might have happened anyway).
The inevitable comparison is to the civil rights movement. We often credit protests for helping that movement succeed. Why can't other groups do that today?
Today's protests, whether it's tea partiers gathered in opposition to taxation or something or anti-war types opposing the invasion of Iraq, don't have nearly that level of discipline or physical risk. There's no reason for an observer to admire anything that these protesters are doing. They're simply getting together and speaking because something is going on that they don't like and they don't want to keep silent about it. That's certainly fine and understandable, but it's hard to see how that changes minds.