Halloween is upon us, and chatter at the Fort again seems to
revolve around the unofficial Zombie March. These last several years have been
relatively harmless as somewhere around 1,500 participants took to the streets,
but if you look back to 2011, local news accounts abound report
mayhem as bottles, rocks, sticks and trash were hurled at officers. Proof
stands that there is potential for this event to go very poorly.
Why exactly, then, is the event so popular?
I suppose Durango has a sort of spirit about it that strives
to find reason to celebrate and let loose. Snowdown can attest to that. But
nothing else I know of, or at least have experienced here, revolves around an overtly
illegal act (in this case taking the streets). How oblivious do you have to
be to miss the riot-suit cops piled at each street corner? It’s not like law
enforcement hasn’t made things clear.
The fact of the matter is that the sheer number of people
who show up to Zombie March forces some tolerance from the police. Ghouls,
ghosts and what have you get to perform their act of disobedience until finally
getting shooed home by the officers. There seems to be a liberation theme, as
the horde chants something to the tune of “Whose streets? Our Streets!”
Sure, in a sense, the streets are ours. But why do we need
to shut down traffic and take them over? The whole reason we have them is to
facilitate safe transportation. Are we being oppressed by the normal function
of our roads, or something? I simply do not understand.
Maybe we need to consider taking the fun somewhere less
disruptive and giving our police officers a night off.