Sunday, March 05, 2006

Amplified Agitation

(CLICK TO ENLARGE) The amplified fellows from the Israeli School of Universal Practical Knowledge (ISUPK) seemed especially defensive Saturday, March 4, about my photographing them. At one point, the ISUPK yellers became so agitated that one of the camouflage-clad dudes carrying a big stick walked over and stood between me and the fellow I dubbed “The Hurler.” (Copyright © 2006. David Klavitter)

Windy, cold days result in two factors that reduce the amplified noise impact for those living in and around the 700 block of 8th Street NE:

1. Depending on the wind direction, sound waves are blown and scattered, and
2. Fewer people congregate on the corner and at the bus stop, which means fewer screaming matches occur between passersby and the amplified preachers.

(CLICK TO ENLARGE) Saturday’s wind blew posters and upended the 13 pound amplifier—also used as a paperweight—several times. (Copyright © 2006. David Klavitter)

The blustery weather also apparently put the amplified fellows of the Israeli School of Universal Practical Knowledge (ISUPK) in a foul mood, because they were overly agitated about my photographing them yesterday. Or maybe these fellows simply lacked adult supervision—their apparent leader, Yohanna, with whom I’ve had on occasion somewhat cordial conversations—was nowhere to be seen.

Besides the usual spoonfuls of rhetoric flung at people walking past or waiting for the bus, the ISUPK fellows were extraordinarily generous in their flailing of insults my way—the usual “cracker,” “faggot,” and “white devil.” I would be remiss if I did not report a new, devious word bestowed upon me by one of the yellers: “Blogger” for their apparent displeasure about their amplified noise being the focus of “Quest for Quiet.”

But I certainly am not the only person subject to their diatribes.

One young girl reading a book near the bus stop became a target of the verbal abuse after she apparently looked up at the word “lesbian.” Instantly, she was the center of his amplified rant.

He asked if she was a lesbian. She didn’t answer immediately. And then he went into a barrage of words about how all the “faggots” and “lesbians” would be killed—by God, of course. He told her she could still change. She finally yelled at him to “fuck off!”

And they seemed especially defensive about my photographing them. At one point, the ISUPK yellers became so agitated that one of the camouflage-clad dudes carrying a big stick walked over and stood between me and the fellow I dubbed “The Hurler.” (“Hurler” represents the fellow’s extreme talent for hurling extreme words via the amplifier at passersby and, of course, yours truly.)

After they were finished preaching, around 6:30 p.m., Hurler said I was too close with my camera making photographs. He said I was rude, lacked manners and was invading his personal space. Wow—that’s coming from a fellow whose group routinely uses an amplifier every Saturday without regard to disrupt the neighborhood’s peace and quiet.

It’s also ironic coming from a group which every Saturday assembles a stage and amplifier on a public sidewalk to yell insults and slander people walking past on the sidewalk or waiting for the bus.

I replied to him that the neighbors feel the same way about the ISUPK’s use of the amplifier. I told him I would make a deal: I would stop photographing them so close if they would stop using the amplifier. He said no and that they would continue to use the amplifier.

See you next Saturday, I replied.
(CLICK TO ENLARGE) After the ISUPK’s amplified yelling session Saturday, a discussion about manners. (Copyright © 2006. David Klavitter)


Anonymous Marc said...

Great post, keep up the good work. Really gave an accurate feel for how these folks treat others.

4:57 PM  
Blogger Tristrami said...

I love this blog. I live in the neighborhood and think you are showing what's really going on at the corner of H and 8th. Their loud, loud shouting and yelling insults at people walking down the street is really unpleasant. Keep up the good work!

8:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

you've got guts. They are clearly intimidated by the blog. Keep it up

8:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

your shots have no energy... u might need to use a flash. looks like the warm weather is going to heat up the corner of H and 8th St NE!

1:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's amazing that these couple of chumps can essentially hold an entire city hostage. I really doubt NYC would put up with this sort of stupidity. No wonder so many continue to think DC is a third-rate city, at least as far as our ability to govern ourselves.

The powers that be need to get off their butts and get rid of these clowns. I find it nearly incomprehensible that they haven't already.

I bet if any of us stood outside Councilmember's homes with a loudspeaker we wouldn't last one hour before being arrested.

11:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

First off I would like to say that NYC is where "ISUPK" originated. So to say NYC would not put up with this type of demonstration is foolishness; there are demonstrations of this type every weekend in NYC as well, and to say Klav has guts is a joke anyone can snap shots and give a false depiction about what's really happening. Which is White Americans are doing what they've always done when they want something (take it by force) and cry like babies until they get their way. 8th & H street N.E. will not be taken over by gentrification. Klav's a fag

1:31 PM  
Blogger Klav said...

The H and 8th Street neighbors and businesses--comprised of people from all walks of life--simply ask that the amplifier be turned down.

5:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

if only you all knew the truth and what the bible says about gays and lesbians, you'd be shocked. so what are you going to tell God? oh by the way this group is in a lot of places,,especially NEW YORK. now if this was the K.K.K would you be saying the same thing?

1:57 AM  
Blogger Klav said...

Nobody should have the right to FORCIBLY make people hear speech--whatever the content--inside their home.

9:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

you are still missing the point. if this was a protest rally, then what would you be saying. D.C. is a city full of sins that the masses should realize. what are you going to do when GOD comes back. he's going to be louder than that!

2:23 PM  

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