reclaim the streets
my day out
oh to be an Anarchist!
my day out (2)
suits you sir!
so why the city?
more to come?
Lovely day in the sun
(postings to the urban75 guestbook)
comment: by jim
I thought J18 was an absolute disgrace not just because of what they did (I'll get to that in a minute) but to the name they now give protesters. There was no need for the violence and vulgarity displayed on that day.I feel deeply sorry for anyone who went there with the intention for a PEACEFUL protest.
To graffiti and deface property in the manner they did was also disgraceful. To climb on top of vans and to provoke police like that they must of known what they were in for. To throw bricks and to be violent gets you FUCK ALL. You gain nothing and absolutely no respect, you're simply looked down upon.I certainly did. The whole event attracted trouble makers who only wanted to be there for riots and violence. Appalling.
The intention and purposes for the protest I did agree with, lets all drop world debt and help them now and stop the big business men exploiting these countries.
Hopefully the PEACEFUL protest on the 25 (which I will attend if carried out) I hope will not be as rash and out of control as its predecessor.
reply: Posted by Han on June 24, 1999
Yes, a small minority did fuck up by being violent, but on the whole, the vibe was absolutely amazing - and inspiring to all who were there. The energy and joy of people who'd gathered from all over the country to Liverpool St. Station was witnessed by lots of City workers, who I think were quite struck by it - that there IS an alternative to the rat-race! I had a couple of interesting conversations with City workers, telling them why we were there, and that made it all worth it for me. (True, most of them are money-grabbing wankers, but there's hope for us all!!).
Basically, it was the POLICE who provoked the violence at J18. It was ludicrous. Loads of people were sitting in Leicester Square park, in the evening, just chilling from the day's madness, doing absolutely nothing.....in a matter of minutes, the RIOT POLICE (why??!!) surrounded the park, and ordered everyone to leave!! They wouldn't even let me back in the park to try and find my friends! Then they herded everyone to Trafalgar square (very aggressively) and reclaimed the streets for us! (hurrah, traffic ground to a halt).
The press are to blame for most of the negative publicity. They always take pictures of the most extreme situations (never of positive images of protesters), using headlines like 'anarchist scum on the rampage'. I think this sort of public image is to be expected - as most people believe every word that they read in the tabloids. As long as we just carry on with what we're doing, protesting peacefully, and try to ignore the police provocations (which is bloody hard!), these sorts of demos will be a resounding success - which I think J18 was! Seeing a few City workers give up the hard slog and join in the fun is what it's all about, innit
reply: by Malc on June 24, 1999
The interesting thing for me was the police planning prior to the event, they were giving warning to businesses of what was going to happen, that windows were likely to be put through etc. they even named likely targets, they got the media to keep it as quiet as possible before hand so as a) to stop it getting even bigger and b) to make it seem even more out of hand after. and they hand specific info to organisations, and get this-- they counted them out and back in so that none got lost, this tells me that the police knew a lot more before hand, which leads me to surmise,
reply: by Jim to Malc on June 24, 1999
After reading replies from various people on this message board and reading other reports (including urban 75's) I have to agree the press and media did make it worse....but not much.
The day could have been very effective with no violence and people will only remember it as being out of control and violent which I'm afraid in parts it was.
I have to agree with Malc though. The whole thing with the police was a bit suss and there should been NO riot police whatsoever. That was unnecessary. Completely.
I give much respect to those whom were peaceful and restrained themselves from defacing the area. Graffiti on boards is one thing but on walls etc. Unacceptable.
I hate to sound so tight lipped etc but I was SO disappointed by the actions of others. Very disappointed. I just hope one day the majority of everyone who did want world debt to stop get what they want. hey have my support.
reply: by jenny jacqui to Jim
first of all, we were there and although the carnival atmosphere was great at first, when it turned nasty it did so for a reason.ANGER! ANGER at the way we were treated as human beings by the police, anger at the way we were herded, manipulated and basically violently beaten.
We went there on Friday, not to cause trouble, but to party and stand up for what we believe to be right.My best mate was beaten black and blue by the riot police with a metal truncheon.For what? Did she have an offensive weapon in her possession? Did she hurt anybody? Was she throwing anything?No, she was just there to do her bit for society and got in the way of the police trying to herd us out like the sheep we are not. We do not condone or condemn thuggery, but when it comes to material property vs people, you cannot argue that the human structure is worth much more than a few broken windows.
reply by Sara M to Jim on June 24, 1999
Active struggle is not about achieving high degrees of netscape engineered hedonism for middle class kids who have just finished their exams and are in need of some excitement. A protest should not be viewed by the majortiy of its attendants as a nice prelude to Glastonbury festival.. Perhaps some people got confused and thought they were going to a massive party packaged in an innovative format such as 'carnival in the city'.
We live in a system which is intrinsically violent, our lives are being repressed by acts of continuous violence against our free will. This systemic violence is exercised in more refined and subtle ways than throwing a few spears to the riot police, but is nevertheless fierce, constant and way more destructive. I do agree that on J18 there were more effective manifestations of dissent, and that some of the violent acts degenerated in sheer vandalism. However, the expression of disgust towards police and institutions which are symbolic of this suffocating madness we live in, made me feel relieved by seeing that there are still people willing to express their dissent without keeping themselves within the margins of political correctness.
After all, we were not the ones who had at their service a group of men in dark uniforms who could have killed each one of us with one blow.
reply by ed to Sara M.
I'd be interested to know exactly *how* my life as a quiet suburban kid is being repressed by continuous acts of violence against my free will.
I would also perhaps suggest that those who resort to violence to express their discontent with the state of the country and the way it's going simply lack the maturity or vision to see that it's not going to achieve anything useful. Political correctness may be a ludicrous thing at times but I would say that peaceful protest and discussion where possible are just sensible and logical rather than cowardly and timid.
To be honest I am astounded at your views on the subject. Fighting a low ranking riot-policeman won't achieve anything positive at all. In fact I'd say it's rather missing the point.
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