A friend attended the Nov 5th Million Mask March. I did not, as the previous two marches I’d attended recently didn’t really seem have any impact. We walked around and shouted for a bit, inconvenienced some vehicle traffic around the capital building, and then dispersed and everything was forgotten. Also, it was taking place on a work day, during & directly after work hours. I could take the day off if I wanted to, but for the reason mentioned, I didn’t have any motivation to do that.
Boy do I regret that decision.
Apparently, Anonymous actually has drawn the attention of The Powers That Be. My friend returned from the event very rattled. Practically terrified, actually. The streets had been filled with police. Not just regular police either (although they were in abundance), but Riot Police in full riot gear, and brandishing rifles. Empty buses were called out to block sight to the protester’s held signs (wtf??). She witnessed several incidents of police harassment, where pigs would push people further onto the sidewalk and yell threats. Incitements to resist, basically. She did not personally witness arrests, but they did occur.
For anyone who advocates for social change, there is nothing worse than being ignored. Somehow Anonymous have made themselves a player. A relatively small protest of idealistic young kids, which was cleared with the government beforehand and which was entirely peaceful, warranted a severe police presence. The people in power were worried – they devoted thought and energy into suppressing this march, and quite a bit of resources (I’m sure that sort of deployment isn’t cheap). This is absolutely where you want to be. I will most definitely be participating in the next Nov 5th march, and likely in other Anonymous actions between now and then.
This is what my friend posted about the event the next day:
Remember, remember the 5th of November.
Oh, I will remember. I will remember it as the day I learned that America was no longer free. I will remember it as the day I gathered peacefully with fellow citizens, only to be threatened, harassed and terrorized by the very police force that is supposed to serve and protect us. I will remember that my local government reacts to a gathering of 200 peaceful protesters with 200 officers in riot gear and riffles. I will remember who the real terrorists are. November 5th is the day I learned who is really attacking our freedoms (hint: they do not live over seas).
But what I will try to remember most is that they are scared of us. Why were those military style forces brought against unarmed civilians? Because we are right, because we are trying to demand that we once again have a government that is BY the people, FOR the people and OF the people. They have taken the power from the people. We want our country back, and that makes them so scared they call in the military against their own citizens. We will get our Republic back. Expect us.
Further reporting on this can be found at Westword
(all photos via Travis Garcia)