Saturday, June 26, 2010

G20 part 2

The striking thing about the entire time I was downtown was the massive police presence, including this circling chopper.

The biggest source at first were the multitude of bike cops;

But as the crowds reached Queen St, from no matter what street, they started seeing the riot police. We saw some from London, Calgary, RCMP, Waterloo and Toronto.

This officer is holding what I assume is a shotgun holding rubber bullets;

I believe this is another version of a gun for shooting rubber bullets.

While I believe this is a paint ball gun which most likely shoots pepper spray.

Again, another rubber bullet shotgun;

In the middle of downtown, the RCMP brought in a truck, and surrounded it with officers;

Later in the day, we drove up to the Queens Park area, which was the designated Free Speech zone. This is where for me, it became very scary.

The police line was thick along the University Street split for Queens Park. They spread out in a long line, at least two deep. Unfortunately we couldn't hear most of the time, but the police declared it an illegal demonstration, and moved in.
The police line moved forward, creating a mass panic as people began to run.

Then the ranks split, and the horse police came in, wheeling around the crowd.

They then pushed everyone back, to the north side of Queens Park.

Then, as we headed north, the police line began to surround the east side of the park, while still pushing from the south, basically trying to surround the entire protest group.

Thats when I called it quits, and ran to the car, as the crowd surged north. It just wasn't safe at all.

I think the most profound statement I heard was from someone on the north side of the park, who stated that they were there to protest the fact that they couldn't protest!

It was very unfortunate that this all happened. To me, the big issue was simply those who took advantaqe of the crowds to become trouble makers. Rather than face the police as they claimed they would, they simply caused vandalism.

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