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Posts tagged ‘protest’

June 25th Rally and March!


It was a chore just to get there.  🙂  I got on the subway and they had closed from Woodbine to Broadview.  This meant waiting on a shuttle bus – that never came.  Luckily I know my way around the city and went around.

I really enjoyed this!  The rally was peaceful, there was music and laughter… people coming together with hopes – a gathering of like minded souls.  There were some incredibly creative methods of getting messages out there.

Women and Maternity Rights Women and Maternity Rights
Women and Maternity Rights

This guy had a body attached to his behind.. with the head vanishing up the..ahem.

This guy had a body attached to his behind.. with the head vanishing up the..ahem.

Drummers

Drummers

All Sort of Music

All Sort of Music

Then we got to hear John Clarke speak – and I just adore him!  He is one of THE best speakers I’ve ever heard on ANY topic.  He is so motivating and I’m lucky to have heard him three times now.

John Clarke, OCAP
John Clarke, OCAP

The march began!  We all knew it was risky going in, and everyone was ready.  The police presence was huge, as was expected – but I was surprised there weren’t any police on horses or bikes – the last march saw them in abundance.   The march was incredible.  We took the same route as the last march – which means up Carlton, past Yonge… and through there – if you know the area – it’s like a huge wind tunnel with all the tall buildings on either side.  This time was magnificent.  The chanting echo climbing up the buildings, empowering.  People gathered on their balconies and on the sidewalk, cheering and taking pictures.

The March

The March

Once we were about to cross Yonge Street the problems started.  The police had – unbeknownst to us until a whispered rumor trickled down the line – started forcing the marchers back to from whence it came. lol  But the back, where we were close to, was still going forward.  I noticed a lot of police bicycles suddenly pull up all along the sides of the parade.  The police got off their bikes, put the kick stands up and removed their helmets.  Then they put on riot helmets.  I nudged my two partners (we all went with partners) and advised them of what was going on and that I felt something was afoot.

Just then the people who had come to the rally and dressed all in black (Black Blok), hiding their identities, came along side the marchers – in a long procession – single file, carrying black cloth, all sewn together, to hide behind.  Right beside us.  On the other side we had some guys with bandanas over their faces.  We know this was in case of pepper spray, or tear gas.. but the police beside us were discussing who they were keeping an eye on.  We were basically in the worst place possible. lol  I pointed these facts out to my partners and we all agreed that maybe we should pull out.  The police wouldn’t let us leave… so we went to the very back of the march and were finally allowed out.

Black Group - Hidden Identities

Black Group - Hidden Identities


As we stood watching the rear of the crowd – a row of guys got in front of the – suddenly there – row of bicycle police.  The guys with the signs kneeled down on the pavement in front of the police on bikes and were chanting… then they got up and did a group hug.

Police PUSHING Protesters Forward
Police PUSHING Protesters Forward


In front of the police on bikes was a row of police on foot, in riot gear… these officers started to advance, pushing the row of sign laden guys up to Yonge Street… slowly… and the guys were dancing and frolicking in front of the police, taking their time, unconcerned….poking the bear, as it were.  Luckily no one got hurt there.

Police at the Rear

Police at the Rear


They pushed the entire crowd up past Yonge Street… and – we didn’t know this until after – but the crowd had stopped because the police had arrested a man.  A man that tried to cross their barrier… he wanted to go to the store –  he was deaf.  They took him to the newly created Jail holding cells on Eastern.  His friends knew what happened and stayed at the jail through the night chanting and demanding his release.

The police had brought in two big trucks that are used for moving prisoners from jails to courts, and back.  They then backed them out.  Pure intimidation.  Then they brought in the horses… these police officers followed the march.

The march that I was in later returned to Allan Gardens – where we had started – and built a tent city to protest homeless issues.  They slept there, chanting unill about 11:00 pm, peacefully, and had breakfast in the morning – with the intent of returning to today’s march – “Get Off The Fence”.

I was going to go today, but I’m exhausted. lol  It didn’t take much to be talked out of it – since it was raining and I am starting to feel rather run down.  Tomorrow is the hard core march – the militant march – where groups will confront the G20 at the fence that was built to protect them.  I won’t be part of that.  In fact, my daughter just called to make sure I’m not there…there’s pure mayhem downtown right now.  Today was supposed to be peaceful, there are children there – but someone blew up a police car, apparently. 😦


Get Off the Fence


~~~  Ha ha, I was going to go to this but realized how tired I am. lol  Taking an easy day…. raining and I’m beat!  Good day to stay in and watch movies. lol

Get Off the Fence

06/26/2010 13:00
Canada/Eastern

GET OFF THE FENCE
Confrontational Anti-Colonial, Anti-Capitalist
Convergence in solidarity with the
People’s First Demonstration
26 June 2010, 1pm, Queen’s Park
And then onwards to the Fence

Working class people across Canada are under attack. From the foot-dragging at Vale Inco to the recent lock-out of Cadillac-Fairview workers to the looming cut backs on the public sector, it has become obvious that the municipal, provincial and federal governments are neither willing nor able to support people.

Corporations get bailed out, while people and the environment pay for their crisis. Global financial and environmental decisions are made by a few self-selected men and women at the G8 and G20 summits and forced down the throat of unionized and non-unionized workers the world over. Resisting unionists in the Philippines and Colombia are brutally murdered while migrant workers are killed on the job in Canada working in precarious conditions.

When this traveling circus comes to Toronto this June, we who work for change will gather to oppose them. We are workers, activists, students, parents, artists, unionists, anarchists with and without immigration status and more. We are the people — and we will not remain silent and passive as the elites celebrate their attacks on our lives and on the lives of people around the world.

On Saturday, June 26th, the People First March begins at 1pm at Queen’s Park. We are calling upon labour activists, migrants, community groups, poor and working people, women, queer folk, disAbled communities and others to join the Get of the Fence contingent as we creatively and energetically voice our discontent and stand in solidarity with labour struggle.

However, when the People’s First demonstration circles back to a so-called a ‘free-speech zone’ at the park’s north end, we will stay put. We call upon all organizations of people, all those that struggle for justice to stay and participate in a militant, confrontational demonstration where we challenge the global apartheid and injustices the fence represents.

On June 26th, when the march turns towards the protest pen, we invite you to go beyond the tired symbolism of parades and beyond the will of politicians. When the People First march turns back, we invite you all to continue on with us to confront the self-proclaimed G20 leaders and the security apparatus that will have occupied our city. We will take back our city from these exploitative profiteers, and in the streets we will be uncontrollable! This is a militant march where many forms of
resistance and tactics are welcomed and respected.

Discuss this in your locals, in your organizations, with your friends and families. In your workplaces, in your meeting rooms, at the dinner table, plan to get off the fence and commit to taking the streets. Together, we will reject the authority of the G20.

For more information, contact torontospokes@ecologyfund.net


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