December 3rd, 2002

bruised_candy Captain Jack

(no subject)

Had an interesting discussion about civil disobedience in Human Rights class today. The basic consensus among the group (not just myself and Mariela, although we seem to have acquired a reputation as "the activist ones") seems to be that we should have a right to non-violent civil disobedience - but we don't.

I wasn't personally in Genoa, but I know people who were, and I saw the photos they and others took of the aftermath. I don't think I'll ever quite clear my head of the image of Carlo Giuliani lying dead in the street, and of the GSF building after the carabinieri swooped. There was blood literally everywhere in those pictures - splashed all up the walls and pooling on the floor. The people occupying that building weren't black bloc, they were among the most peaceful and liberal of all the protesters, and they were brutally beaten by the police as they slept.

And then there's May Day, which wasn't anywhere near as violent, but was still a clear infringement of human rights. For those who don't know, the police decided to stop the May Day protests in London a couple of years ago - by penning up 50,000 people in Trafalgar Square. For. Eight. Hours. Not just protesters, but tourists and anyone else who had the bad luck to be there at the wrong time. They weren't letting anyone out, on any pretext. Wrongful detention, I think. Yes.

I've said it before and I'll almost certainly say it again - why won't people wake up?! We are losing our right to dissent, and pretty soon it'll probably be a legally punishable offence! Why don't more people realise this?

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