Tuesday, September 2, 2008

I Protest

I guess we all know violence sells (as well as sex). Media prefers to focus on the action shots of a few idiots bashing in windows, protesters and police clashing, protesters being arrested and pepper-sprayed and tear gassed. The news has to scream out 7 arrested! (or 180 or 200 or whatever). I guess “9,993 NOT arrested” wouldn’t sell. “This just in: nearly 10,000 people were capable of peacefully demonstrating, holding signs and flags, singing, chanting, laughing, talking, and not clashing with the police.” Yeah – I guess that isn’t very sexy.

So it’s more likely that you came across stories in the newspaper, videos on the news, and photo galleries that showed a majority of violence and civil disobedience in yesterdays march on the Republican National Convention - with a few feel-good images thrown in.

We don’t have a tv, so I don’t know if there was any mention of the Liberty Parade (which we missed – shoot!). According to this article, the anarchy and acts of violence were mostly by a smaller group of people and didn’t necessarily happen at the same time as the march. That violence apparently kept up throughout the day. Despite the photos and video, Jeremy and I walked in the march for several hours and never saw any violence at all. This is our experience of the march (in slideshow format!):


@bdul muHib said...

Sounds much like the so-called WTC riots in Seattle- a few people causing trouble got all the press, and no one paid attention to the huge number of peaceful demonstrators.

I think you're right. The press loves a riot, and will do everything they can to make one seem like it happened.

Aimee said...

Indeed. In fact I feel like I read some things about journalists (or police or someone) sort of encouraging riot-like activities. It doesn't help any that the police are armed to the teeth and look ready to beat the crap out of us - that starts the whole thing off with a lot of tension.

Anonymous said...

Greg and I have been watching the RNC unfold these past few days and needless to say, we are concerned about the future of our government if left in the hands of the Republican Party. It's comforting to know you and Jeremy are doing your part to let your voices be heard. It gives me hope (:

@bdul muHib said...

You may be interested in these stories: http://blogs.citypages.com/blotter/2008/09/breaking_tensio.php and http://pushingrope.blogspot.com/2008/09/riot-outside-republican-national.html

Aimee said...

wow, yeah it has been crazy here. I think I heard they'd arrested something like 800 people over the few days. The stories of macing and pepper-spraying and so on are incredible.
I'm a little divided on all this. I think people should have the right to protest and there are so many restrictions put on this it makes it impossible sometimes. Doesn't it seem ironic that you have to have a permit to protest? (Oh, and according to St. Paul law, you can't wear face masks or anything to hide your identity while in a march).
On the other hand I think some people are out there for violence-sake, for picking fights, for making trouble, for the thrill of being a victim. At least it seems like that. Sometimes the people seem unorganized and just looking for trouble. I think that is kind of stupid.

(is the Palosaari in the first article any relation to you?)

@bdul muHib said...

He's some relation, I'm sure. But I got the news feed from a google bot on "Palosaari".