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Webster Groves Independence Day Parade Showcases Divided Politics

The crowds seemed divided over whether these are the best of times or the worst of times, but they came together for one thing.

July 05, 2018 - 7:22 am
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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - A parade divided - the Webster Groves parade featured marchers with the NRA, marchers against gun violence, pro-life marchers and pro-choice marchers.

The crowds seemed divided over whether these are the best of times or the worst of times, but they came together for one thing.

Parade watcher Terry Thompson has a cardboard cutout of the statute of liberty in his yard, and he says his love of the country goes beyond politics.

“It’s still a great place to live despite all the problems,” he says.

Looking tough as nails, a Battle of the Bulge survivor surveyed the crowd from atop an armored vehicle in the Webster Parade.  95-year old Walter Fisher was asked if he thinks this generation is tough enough to do what his did.

 “I don’t think they have. They’re going to have to learn more history. They don’t talk about World War II in school anymore,” he says.

The Bulge was a month-long, final attempt by Nazi Germany to repel the allied invasion.  From December of 44 through January of 45, more than 19-thousand Americans were killed in snowy battles.  Fisher says he suffered third-degree frostbite, but keeps fit doing daily exercises.

 

 Among those marching in the Webster parade was U.S. Senator Claire McCaskill.

“I hope that today’s a day we can all remember why we love our country, and it’s the values. It’s the freedom and religious liberty, it’s freedom of expression, it’s not allowing politics to interfere with the rule of law,” she says.

A Democrat, McCaskill has been called the "most vulnerable” member of the Senate this election year, but she says the applause of the crowd in Webster encourages her that "something is in the air" this year she hasn't heard for a while. 

 

Republican congresswoman Ann Wagner was also in the Webster parade. KMOX News asked her about reports that North Korea may not be scaling back its nuclear program--despite its meeting with President Trump.

“We’ll see. I certainly hope that they’re serious; I know the President is and I know that Secretary of State Pompeo is in contact with the Kim regime and they’re meeting and talking. There’s some talk that he will also come to New York and that will also get things going, but I’m also cautious about the North Koreans,” she says.

Wagner says she still thinks the threat of a war with North Korea is drastically lower than it was a year ago.                    

 

The parade went without incident, except for an antique Studebaker that overheated and had to be pushed to the side by several volunteers.