June 27, 2010

Thought I’d fill you in with a few shots from my meander over toward the danger zone yesterday, also know as, the area where I work, a few blocks away from The Toronto Convention Centre – the bizarrely chosen location of this year’s G20 Summit.

By the time I hit the area the marching was well under way. At first, I stood behind police lines at University and Richmond Street West thinking the rally would make its way down University Ave. However, from a distance, once the chants of justice grew louder, I noticed the crowd moving east along Queen Street. The numbers were high but the crowd seemed under control. It was at this time that I looked at my watch and thought it was time to make my way to the other side of Yonge Street. A major motivator to stay east of the mob was my need to make it to the St. Lawrence Market before it closed. Seriously. Also, I had no desire to be clamped into the swelling sea of bodies. I’ve been pinned in a mass like that in the past and had no desire to revisit a possible frenzied crowd reaction. It was when I turned off, Toronto St, a quiet road two blocks east of Yonge, that I noticed the fire burning in the middle of King, at about Bay. I didn’t realize at the time it was a police car.

I felt disgusted. It was like a fiasco on top of a fiasco – the first one having to do with the decision to hold the Summit in that area, heck, in Toronto, to being with.

Behind the lines. University and Richmond.

Canada Life (building in the distance.)

Heading South

Smoking on King Street West - a few blocks from where I work. Thankfully, due to the Summit, I had the weekend off (although I'm not crazy about the lost wages).


A few blocks over, a person gets shelter from the rain with their belongings tucked underneath them for safety.

And, a block over still, it's business as usual.

Streetcars at a stand still. I walked a lot yesterday.

It is an enormous shame that the efforts of the multitude of demonstrators were drowned-out by sirens and sounds of breaking glass. What will most likely be remembered is the chaos not the causes being rallied for.  It was a ridiculous scene that most likely capsized the efforts of so many to actually make a difference. To those who took to the rainy streets of Toronto, yesterday, to share their voices of concern with both power and peace – I salute you.

By the way, yesterday’s rally, called People First, was organized by the Ontario Federation of Labour and the Canadian Labour Congress in support of groups such as Oxfam, Greenpeace, the  Council of Canadians and the Canadian Federation of Students to give voice to such worthy causes as economic recovery, the environment, human rights, decent jobs and social justice. Issues all worth shouting for.


2 Responses to “Fiasco”

  1. Susan Parmenter said

    I love your last two paragraphs. That is the straight shit. I totally agree. Well said.

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