G20 Aftermath: Police Should “Do your goddamned job!”

From rabble.ca, I have two videos to share.

“Naomi Klein to police: ‘Don’t play public relations, do your goddamned job!'”

After the widely condemned police brutality during the G20 Summit in Toronto, crowds gathered for a protest in front of Police Headquarters in Toronto on Monday, June 28, 2010. There, Naomi Klein tore into the Toronto Police for choosing to “play public relations” instead of doing their job. Filmed by Tor Sandberg.

For someone who isn’t a public speaker, she did an awesome job at Monday’s rally (certainly better than the police did theirs).

Some of my thoughts yesterday were:

Why is freedom of expression one of the more important human rights? Because without it we wouldn’t be able to fight for other human rights! That’s why it’s important to support peaceful protests/demonstrations.

For the record, I’m sure there are some good cops, but the safety of the people should be a priority above “following orders”. I hope many officers think about those priorities carefully in the aftermath of the G20 protests.

Additionally, I hope many officers think carefully about what Naomi Klein said at the rally on Monday. Their bosses got caught with their hands in the cookie jar. It’s time they owe up to that – admit what they did was wrong. It’s bad enough that the police broke the law – constitutional law and also on an international level, human rights law – but do they have to insult us with blatant lies and police propaganda? Do they really think the Canadian public is that blind?

At this point, I have to write about something that I have been thinking about for a while now, and that is “The world is watching”. I heard this in relation to the story of Neda, the Iranian girl who was shot last year during the protests against the Iranian elections. The phrase “the world is watching” originally comes from the song, “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” by Gil Scott-Heron. While the song was a commentary on media and how television does not accurately portray real events (hence, “the revolution will not be televised… the revolution will be no re-run… the revolution will be live”), I think with the way media has changed since then, media has become more real than its old counterpart, television. Modern media for most people consist of their computers and mobile phones. We can communicate instantly online now and easily share media items such as photos, audio files, and videos not only from our laptops but also our mobile phones. Most mobile phones are designed with a camera. Anyone with a mobile phone can quickly take photos, record videos or audio files, and quickly upload. Quick uploading of photos can be done on sites such as Twitter along with short simple messages. Site like Tumblr or Plurk allow you to upload videos from your phone as well. Because of this, I’d say that yes, now the world really is watching. Over the past weekend, I kept up-to-date on events on rabble.ca’s Twitter account. (Originally, I was using the “g20” search on Twitter, but was annoyed at many of the ridiculous messages, I wanted real news about the events, so I went to rabbleca which apparently sent out many of their journalists to cover events.) So, yeah, here was real lifestreaming news. And anyone can do this now.

Lots of photos and video evidence came through this past weekend showing the police brutality and yes, the vandalism from a small group of people. But through that real footage, we can start to discern the truth of these events. “The world is watching”, do the police really think they can dish out their propaganda and we will believe them? Watch the next video.

“G20 Toronto: Did the ‘black block’ get green light to rampage?”

The police were fully aware of the rampage and watched the black block from a distance at a number of locations. It wasn’t until they had dispersed into a crowd of peaceful protesters who thought that they were in a sanctioned area that the police took action beating innocent people with batons and spraying them with pepper spray.

Why was this allowed to happen? Police abandoned police cars at Bay and King when they didn’t need to, why? Was this allowed to happen so the Harper government could justify an outrageous security bill when there was no credible terrorist threat (according to CSIS)? Who led this group of vandals? Were they infiltrated by government paid provocateurs as was the case in Montebello where police with masks and rocks attacked their own riot squad?

I have the same questions as many others. We want answers for what happened. I know quite well that the wheels of justice take some time; thus, I sincerely hope Amnesty International Canada has an independent review into these events (they have already called for one). A public inquiry would be good too. As much information as we can get on these events is helpful. A “Rally for a Public Inquiry Concerning the Actions at the G20” is to take place on July 1st (Canada Day) at Queen’s Park from 5:30 to 11:30 p.m. Other rallies across the country are being organized now – “The fight back is on! Solidarity with the Toronto 900 rallies organized across the country”

~~~C

One Response to “G20 Aftermath: Police Should “Do your goddamned job!””

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