The official police explanation for

The official police explanation for shutting down the concert is that the crowd had become unruly, with youths throwing rocks over the fence at the police and starting fires. In truth, the police were looking for a pretext -- any pretext — to shut down the gathering, fire some ammo, and clear a path for departing Democratic delegates. At 9th and Figueroa my group decides to take advantage of this opportunity to ‘dialogue’ (Democrats like that word) with the delegates as they make their way away. I wish one cluster an expiditious journey back to Beverly Hills and I get a look that says, How did you know where we’re going? My friend Sara asks them how they feel about living in a democratic police state. Calling them corporate liberals — and ineffectual to boot — is also surprisingly satisfying. Since Democrats fashion themselves to the left of something, they are disarmed by such taunts.

Meanwhile my friend Dean and I formulate a theory that Richard Nixon — the bane of all middle-aged Democrats — was, on many important issues, to the left of Clinton and Gore. That’ll get their hackles up, we think. We try our new pet theory out on the delegates, but none launches into a defense of their men. All we get is nervous laughter. Finally we get a response from a 50ish looking man wearing a Gore button who ponders the question and responds, ‘You’re probably correct,’ and moves on up the street. We do have one lengthy, honest-to-God conversation with a woman delegate, and a crowd forms to listen to the debate.

Finally, though, we tire of dialoguing and start heading away. As we walk along Figueroa the sounds of sirens and cop helicopters are a constant. We stop at 7th to rest and discuss the evening’s events, only to have three police immediately tell us to move along. We comply and walk to 5th where it seems safe to relax. We lament our sore bodies and decide a bit of yoga is in order and convene a small circle and commence our exercise. What could be more benign? But no! Within minutes four cop cars speed up, lights ablaze, and eight police demand that we desist from our criminal enterprise. Just another case of yoga interuptus on the streets of L.A. Time to call it a night.
NewsForChange (good d2kla protest coverage) diarist Aaron Hackett participated in the Critical Mass ride yesterday and escaped arrest. I look forward to reading his protest journal as the week continues. thanks, considered harmful.
randomWalks @randomWalks