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M20 SF breakaway photos
I have a few photos from the event today. From the outset, as you'll see, the cops were really interested in stirring things up with the breakaway march. They tried intimidating us with numbers and batons, and in addition to the mass arrests in defense of Nordstroms, several times the dirtbike squad rushed the crowd. I have a photo of one guy who was not, as far as I know, part of the demo but got beaten anyhow.
I have a few photos from the event today. From the outset, the cops were really interested in stirring things up with the breakaway march. They tried intimidating us with numbers and batons, and in addition to the mass arrests in defense of Nordstroms, several times the dirtbike squad rushed the crowd. I have a photo of one guy who was not, as far as I know, part of the demo but got beaten anyhow.
The only faces visible are either with those folks' permission or folks who were paid to attend.
This is one of the larger breakaways I've seen, and I was surprised at the level of police aggression given the fairly good-sized number of folks who I think didn't understand that the rules are different at 2....
Once the arrests near Nordstroms were underway, flanking groups of cops were sent into the crowd to reinforce the guys in the streets. They took off at a dead run from behind the crowd, which was a mix of demonstrators and folks on Market. You can really see the motion in this photo. Nutso deployment, really.
first of two
So, they've learned that their horses don't like to attack innocent people, but their officers do. Solution? Give 'em motorcycles, and permission to ride them through crowds. Get everyone's adrenaline pumping, get lots of bad judgements made.
I saw this guy first at the crest of a hill. My impression is that he is just a San Franciscan who'd been on his bike, and came up behind a line of cops faster than they liked. This surprised them, and they started wailing on him. At some point, he picked up a stick. Don't know if he'd had it to start with, or if he got it off the ground in self-defense. He ultimately got away from them, and more power to him. The analogy with ordering 30 oinks to sprint into a crowd from behind it is pretty clear, though: when you surprise people from behind, they get twitchy. So it probably shouldn't be a surprise that what started as a fairly orderly "disperse or be arrested" near Nordstroms went south when a ton of tac officers got ordered out from cover. What, the poor piggies were only going to be able to arrest 50 people who hadn't heard the order, instead of 80?
This, like the prior two shots, is of the smaller group which followed the band after the band left the Market arrests. At this point, the cops had flanked the band in front, and they were reversing course to a clear intersection. It was great to have 'em out, by the way, and I'm glad they came to visit. The guy with the skateboard who added a weirdly moaning percussion by beating the board against a lamppost was great, too.
Amazingly enough, not all Muslims carry explosives. Who knew? In this instance, several folks leaving the main demonstration heading for BART were taken aback by the spectacle of arrests on Market. The confrontation between these women and the cops was very interesting to see.
Whoops. Someone needs a new copper number.
This cop and mister six six six were both treated to a whole new experience: listening to citizens. What happened was this - a couple of area residents were coming home down Market, and saw the picket line of cops finishing up the work they'd made by starting the arrest sweep. The women were pissed. They wante to know why it was that when a shopping district frequented by white folks was being simply walked through, the police were out in such amazing numbers, while in their neighborhood, not two blocks away, they could tell cops all tehy wanted about local dealers and get no fucking action. Why, they asked, were the cops not willing to work on rapes and killings in their community? Why, they asked, were the police unwilling to simply come out of their sty and enforce the laws in front of the local Oink chapter - directly across from the school? And the boys in blue were required, for once, to actually listen to what citizens in the neighborhood thought of their work.
These two women were some of the folks who finally got the chance to discuss how fucking terribly police deployment in SF gets handled. Go near Nordstroms, get your ass arrested. Go near union square, watch motorcycles ride up your ass. Kill folks who aren't white, and you damn near have to hang an "I'm guilty" sign off yourself to get caught. Rape pretty much anyone, and, well, boys will be boys.