Yesterday, I made a lot more money in tips than I normally do. However, the reason behind my monetary increase is that my coworker did not come in to work; hence my tips remaining un-split and sitting comfortably in my wallet. Since my impression of him thus far is certainly not of someone who is an adept of hooky, I began to think about why he was absent. Then it hit me; he had gone to Toronto over the weekend to witness (from outside, of course) the G20 assembly. I figured he most likely was jailed alongside the 900 other detainees, and I was right.
I wouldn’t define myself as a highly political person, although I hold many issues to heart. However, the mass arrests struck my interest and I’ve been doing some reading on the subject.
I stumbled upon this comment on BlogTO.
“It’s become part of the yearly gong-show routine; world leaders land in G20 city. City becomes epi-centre of every single protest-worthy cause in the world for 5 days, they clash violently with police, world leaders eat fine foods and chit chat in fancy hotel, world leaders leave, protesters leave, and the cycle repeats at the same time the next year. Total waste of time and money and energy for EVERYONE involved.”
The person behind the ever so slightly sarcastic message brings up a good point; there is always a protest during the G20 weekend, and nothing ever changes. I just don’t think these protests are effective, and I’m not exactly sure what the protesters think they will achieve [and I mean that with utmost respect]. People were rallying for a cause, whether it was for women or queer rights or that of “illegal” immigrants etc. I’m all for having a voice in this universe and standing up for what we believe in, but there needs to be a new formula.
The police in whichever city know what to expect: some people will be violent& some will be peaceful. Some individuals will think burning cop cars is an ingenuous idea that carries the lofty weight of making a change in the way the countries in the G20 are run; other less ballsy people will simply resolve to throw cheap shots such as “pigs” and other four-lettered words. Will this spectacle of [however justified] opinions really make them change any of their policies? Or will the hired security [a.k.a the 5.0 or popo] simply throw people in detention centers and possibly violate their rights as human beings as it has been alleged? I’m far from being on the F the police bandwagon, but I think we should picture them as large [sometimes power-hungry] bouncers. If you push them, they will push back with every ounce of power they think they have. Besides, that goes for anyone.
My mind tends to wander, so now I’m thinking of the success of Martin Luther King’s march in 1963. African-Americans and supporters marched in Birmingham for the end of segregation, for equality between Blacks and Whites in all public domains. Perhaps, their goal was more focused as opposed to a disjointed group of people rallying for different causes left and right. What exactly are the big leaders supposed to take from this?
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