Post-G20: Rallies, More Articles and Videos

It’s been a while since I blogged about the G20 and it’s associated civil liberties/human rights issues.

A few peaceful rallies have taken place since the G20. The latest is scheduled for July 17 – see “Update on G20 Days of Action across Canada on July 17”. The rally in Toronto took place on July 10. Torontoist.com’s article, “With Yet Another Rally, the G20 Protest Movement Gets Sophisticated” provides some coverage of and commentary on this rally.

There was a rally on Canada Day (July 1st) for a “Public Inquiry into G20 Security Measures.”

Following are tweets from @SimaSaharZerehi

March ends with chants in Queen’s Park: “this is what democracy looks like!” #g20 #g20report
March turn towards Queen’s Park from College #g20 #g20report
20 minutes ago via Twitterrific
Protestor pointing to cops: “they’re wearing black, they’re on bikes, they must be Black Block” #g20 #g20report
25 minutes ago via Twitterrific
Crowd chants: “wasted, wasted, billion dollars!” #g20 #g20report
27 minutes ago via Twitterrific
Police line blocking road north on Bay & east on College #g20 #g20report
31 minutes ago via Twitterrific
Retweeted by you
March moves west in College-several people yell shame at cops as they pass #g20 #g20report
32 minutes ago via Twitterrific
Crowd sing O’Canada standing before line of cops on College & Bay #g20 #g20report
33 minutes ago via Twitterrific
Crowd chants “get those animal’s off those horses” #g20 #g20report
34 minutes ago via Twitterrific
March turns north on bay-chanting “our Canada” #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21lu1i
about 1 hour ago via Twitpic
Crowd chants:”protesting’s not a crime-no more cops on overtime!” #g20 #g20report
about 1 hour ago via Twitterrific
While chanting “freedom of speech under attack – unite fight back” the march turns east on Dundas #g20 #g20report
about 1 hour ago via Twitterrific
“our city!” chants the crowd #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21lpe2
about 1 hour ago via Twitpic
Today’s march & rally twice as large as Monday’s #g20 #g20report
about 1 hour ago via Twitterrific
Several thousand strong march moves south on University Ave #g20 #g20report #fb http://twitpic.com/21ln61
about 1 hour ago via Twitpic
Crowd now several thousand strong #g20 #g20report #fb http://twitpic.com/21ll26
about 1 hour ago via Twitpic
March route: South on University, East on Dundas, North on Bay & back to Queen’s Park #g20 #g20report
about 1 hour ago via Twitterrific
Protests begins to gather for march, gathering behind Samba Squad #g20 #g20report
about 1 hour ago via Twitterrific
Kate accepts marriage proposal in front of cheering crowd #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21lisf
about 2 hours ago via Twitpic
Tommy Taylor gets down on one knee & proposes to girlfriend Kate #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21lipk
about 2 hours ago via Twitpic
Taylor: “I kept begging for water & I begged & than I passed out-I can’t wait until they release the footage” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Taylor: “before today I was never anti-police, those officers put all police to shame” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Taylor: “we were handcuffed the entire time” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Taylor: “we told them there’s a 16 year old boy in here. That kid was in there for the full 24hrs I was” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Taylor: “8 hours in detention, no water. I’m a Canadian citizen & I had to beg for water” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Taylor: “I’m ashamed 2 say I was not a protestor-I was out going 2 dinner with my girlfriend, enjoying t city when arrested” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Tommy Taylor & his girlfriend was not protesting when he got arrested in front of the Novotel #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Tommy Taylor one of 900 people detained speaks #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21lfib
about 2 hours ago via Twitpic
Mullah: “we the people of Toronto, the people of Canada, we will not be bullied, we will not be censored” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Mullah: “when u go home tonight mark in ur calendars on July 1st I stood up for Canadian human rights & civil liberties” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Ali Mullah from Canadian Arab Federation speaks #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21lehe
about 2 hours ago via Twitpic
“Free, free the detainees!” chants the growing crowd #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Khan: “The real thugs we saw on the steers were the police” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Khan: “despite the 1billion dollars & showcasing of weapons it didn’t work, people came out on Saturday, Sunday, Monday” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Sharmeen Khan from Toronto Community Mobilization Network speaks to crowd #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Shanaaz Gokool: “the cost of security can never be @ the cost of human rights” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Shanaaz Gokool: “go to amnesty.ca & demand accountability from Harper & McGuinty” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Shanaaz Gokool: “All findings from independent review must be made public” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Crowd at Queen’s Park grows rapidly as speeches continue #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Shanaaz Gokool calls for independent review into police action & violation of human rights in Toronto #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Shanaaz Gokool from Amnesty speaks to crowd #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21laud
about 2 hours ago via Twitpic
Cartwright: “it’s the cold hard light of day that must be brought into account” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Cartwright: last incident of mass arrests in this city was in 1981 in the Bath-house raids against the gay community #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Cartwright speaks of history of Chinese exclusion passed on Canada Day #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
First speaker John Cartwright President of Toronto & York Region Labour Council #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21l938
about 2 hours ago via Twitpic
Crowds chant “protesting is not a crime – no more cops on overtime!” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Crowds chant “A billion dollars – Wasted” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Crowd chants ” Hey,hey, Ho, Ho, Bill Blair has to GO!” #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21l82u
about 2 hours ago via Twitpic
Crowds chant “what do we want-Public Inquiry-When do we want it-Now!” #g20 #g20report
about 2 hours ago via Twitterrific
Several hundred already gathered at Queen’s Park #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21l746
about 2 hours ago via Twitpic
Crowd of anti-police brutality activists behind to form at Queen’s Park #g20 #g20report http://twitpic.com/21l4dd
about 3 hours ago via Twitpic

Following is an amusing video about the G20. If you go to the youtube page for it, you can find the lyrics there.

Rabble.ca’s article, “Was Stephen Harper the hidden hand behind the G20 fiasco in Toronto?” consists of a video by The Real News Network.

This video has some good commentary. Also, if you pause at 5:26 into the video, you can see the budget for the G8/20 weekend. What is “Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness”? “How to beat civilians” seminars? Why would the RCMP need $500 million (and change)?

Here is the budget breakdown from the Office of the Parliamentary Budget Officer, as shown in the video above:

RCMP $507,459,400
Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness $278,310,228
National Defence $77,570,000
CSIS $3,137,483
Health $2,266,619
Canadian Border Services Agency $1,180,070
Transport $1,240,581
Canadian Air Transport Security Authority $399,399
Public Health Agency of Canada $583,330
Industry $2,839,000
Contingency Reserve (Fiscal Framework) $55,000,000

Following are few more articles of note:

“G20 capitalism is attacked in the streets of Toronto”

“G8/G20 Communique: G20 activist claims police pulled off his prosthetic leg”

“Medics at G20 protests speak out against police brutality”

“All of the serious injuries we treated were inflicted by the police. While violence against property received a great deal of coverage, violence against people — broken bones, cracked heads and eyes filled with pepper spray – has yet to feature prominently in any mainstream media. Our teams of medics witnessed and treated people who had been struck in the head by police batons, had lacerations from police shields and had been trampled by police horses…

Street Medics faced barriers in many instances. We witnessed people being seriously injured behind police lines who could not be assisted. Our concern for these individuals is immense. Several medics were detained by police and intimidated, despite identifying themselves. Medical equipment, such as gauze, band aids and gloves, was confiscated. We were intimidated and made to feel that what we were doing was illegal. In fact, we were simply providing first-aid…

as a community, we must begin to recognize a pattern: the criminalization of dissent.”

The “criminalization of dissent” is indeed a pattern amongst human rights abusers. Tyrannical governments find it necessary to silence those who oppose the government because they are afraid of others joining the cause of the dissenters. In more severe human rights cases, this form of silencing involves killing or brutally beating dissenters or making dissenters disappear. In Human Rights Watch’s World Report for 2010, Kenneth Roth writes in his article, “The Abusers’ Reaction: Intensifying Attacks on Human Rights Defenders, Organizations, and Institutions”:

Certain abusive governments, sometimes working together, sometimes pursuing parallel tracks, are engaged in an intense round of attacks on human rights defenders, organizations, and institutions. The aim is to silence the messenger, to deflect the pressure, to lessen the cost of committing human rights violations.

The techniques vary from the subtle to the transparent, from the refined to the ruthless. In some cases, human rights activists—be they advocates, journalists, lawyers, petition-gatherers, or others who document and publicize abuses or defend victims—have been harassed, detained, and sometimes killed. Organizations have been shut down or crippled. The tools used range from the classic police raid to the more novel use of regulatory constraints.

The perpetrators of these attacks are not limited to classic authoritarian governments such as Cuba and China. Democracies such as Sri Lanka have increased the pressure on local and international human rights groups that documented violations, as have governments that hold elections but fall short of democratic rule, such as Russia.

It is because the criminalization of dissent is a clear pattern that we have cause to worry that things may worsen in Canada under Harper’s government. I’m just really surprised no one got shot or Tasered to death.

“Of my illegal detention (with 899 others) and the G20 protests”

Ben Powless’ article above is well worth reading. Well-written. Lots of photos. (He was smart and switched out his SD card before he got arrested that night; though how he kept the SD card on him, I’m not sure I want to know, hopefully in his pants pockets)

“TTC worker caught in G20 police sweep”

I had heard through Twitter about the TTC worker being arrested. I’m glad to see a news article about that case. I still find it insane that some people still think that innocent civilians weren’t arrested. If you weren’t a protester or a journalist, you were a “thrill-seeker”. It’s amazing what some people will tell themselves to make themselves feel better at night. Fact of the matter is that people should be able to walk around public streets without being told which way to go, without being told to leave, and without fear of being arrested. Those civilians who make excuses for these arrests, who stand behind the police force and government on this, are complicit in the violations of people’s civil liberties/human rights because they’ve tacitly agreed to the/this police state.

Some more videos that I think are important to watch:

Rabble.ca asks Did you see these G20 ‘provocateurs’? See video below.

Something to note: the Black Bloc tactic involves camouflaging yourself in black amongst a group of others wearing black. It also involves covering your face so you’re not easily recognized.

G8/G20 Communique: Journalists attacked by police at G20 protests

“First they came for the activists, then they came for the media…” (Refer back to the link above to Kenneth Roth’s article.)

Some more videos can be found at G20 Protesters Being Abducted, Bundled Into Unmarked Vans In Toronto.

That’s it for now. Don’t forget about the Day of Action on July 17th.

~~~C

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