By Stephen M. Silverman
Updated July 26, 2001 10:39 AM
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Police in the Chicago suburb of Itsaca, Ill., on Wednesday arrested 20 peaceful activists, including singer Bonnie Raitt, 51, and former Doors drummer John Densmore, 56, reports the Associated Press. The rally, which was held outside the headquarters of Boise Cascade Office Products, was intended to draw attention to the company’s tree-cutting practices in some of the nation’s most precious forests. The demonstrators were handcuffed, led away and later charged with disorderly conduct, a crime punishable by a small fine. They were then released from the city jail. “Deforestation worldwide is a life and death issue. We want deforestation halted, we want it now and we want it for future generations,” said Randall Hayes, the founder of Rainforest Action Network, the group that organized the event. Cascade’s parent, paper and manufacturing giant Boise Cascade Corporation has reportedly fought a public battle with RAN for more than a year. Company spokesman Michael Moser told AP that Boise Cascade, among other environmental measures, has hired a third party auditor to review its logging practices. “If they would correct the information and agree to have a dialogue, then maybe progress could be made,” said Moser, referring to RAN. “We’ll offer a meeting right now,” responded RAN spokesman Mike Brune. “We’re not short on meetings, we’re short on results.”