Reactions to protests

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jdc
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by jdc » Mon Mar 22, 2021 10:01 pm

lpm wrote:
Mon Mar 22, 2021 9:50 pm
Er... they called the demo Kill the Bill.

Give it that name and you're basically declaring it an ACAB event where rioters are welcome.
I wanted to call it 'kill the police, crime and sentencing bill' but apparently they couldn't fit it on the flyers. Would have headed off that kind of confusion though, dammit.

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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Bird on a Fire » Mon Mar 22, 2021 10:28 pm

Does anybody still call the police the (Old) Bill? Haven't heard it in years personally. Probably not since The Bill was killed yonks ago.

This is the first time I've realised people could misunderstand as "kill the police" rather than "kill this specific bill". All the info from organisers the demonstrations has been extremely clear that it's specifically about the Police, Crime and Sentencing Bill, as has all the media coverage I've seen, but I know not everybody reads stuff.

Would be a good bit of misinformation to spread, alongside the stuff about bussing in anarchists. A pleasingly British bit of propaganda, rather than that imported antifa nonsense.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Brightonian » Mon Mar 22, 2021 11:03 pm

I still associate "Kill the Bill" with the campaign against the Industrial Relations Act which was apparently 50 years ago. (Don't know why, because I was pretty young and even less aware at the time.)

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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by discovolante » Tue Mar 23, 2021 10:00 am

This is good: https://brokenbottleboy.substack.com/p/ ... ource=copy and worth watching the politics live segment he refers to, which is embedded in the tweet which is embedded in the page...
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Fishnut » Tue Mar 23, 2021 11:53 am

discovolante wrote:
Tue Mar 23, 2021 10:00 am
This is good: https://brokenbottleboy.substack.com/p/ ... ource=copy and worth watching the politics live segment he refers to, which is embedded in the tweet which is embedded in the page...
That is really good. I can't believe saying you want to wait and see the outcome of investigations is somehow a sackable offence for some.

This is an interesting piece by Bristol Anarchist Federation so it obviously has an angle and a Rashomon effect going on, but they say that in the run-up to the start of the protest, "police started to approach individuals and small groups, demanding they leave, threatening fines or arrest, or asking them to submit to questioning" and then eased off as numbers grew and the protest began. The afternoon was peaceful with the police doing little but it seems that around 6pm things changed,
as things were dying down... police manhandled and attempted to remove a protester who was sitting down. It was after this provocation, at about 6pm, that those still up for marching headed down the hill next to the Galleries towards Bristol’s central police station – Bridewell.
They describe a peaceful, if numerous, crowd around the police station. Riot police then arrived and,
began to push the crowd back, surrounding and isolating parts of it. They pushed people over, moved them back, and some police lashed out at the crowd. Despite this, the protesters, whilst tense, remained restrained. Many people were still sat on the floor, or miling around by the station walls. The most retaliation from the crowd during this 20 minute or so stand off consisted of chants of ‘shame on you’ and some rocking of the lone police van.
According to this narrative, the police decided to escalate the situation by sending in the canine unit and using batons on protestors which then set off the violence we saw. So while I agree with my earlier claim that some protestors turned violent, I'm even less sure now that that violence wasn't unprovoked. I saw other tweets indicate that 6pm was a turning point in the police approach. It would be interesting to know if this was a change of shift or something, or just a pre-determined cut-off that they'd agreed beforehand - before 6pm let the protestors get on with things, after 6pm they have to disperse. If that was the case it would have been easy to convey that to organisers but as the protest couldn't have organisers this wasn't possible. That said, if the police did want protestors to disperse they could easily have used a megaphone or something to communicate with them, rather than bring in riot police.

The Guardian has at least tried to hear alternative sides, though it leads with the "rioters are bad" narrative and only brings in alternatives in the second half of the piece.
Another student, 19, who asked for his name not be used, was caught up in the violence. “I now know how terrifying it is to be rushed at by riot police swinging batons, charged at by horses, threatened with dogs,” he said. “No wonder people fought back against the police.”
...
A Bristol entrepreneur in his 40s said he was bitten by a police dog. He tried to remind a police officer that the right to protest was “ingrained into our democracy for 800 years and was a central tenet of the way it operates”, but alleges the officer simply drew his baton and threatened him.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by lpm » Tue Mar 23, 2021 1:22 pm

The police know - but the naive seem not to - that criminals and rioters get shielded by everyday protesters. When the violence starts the police needs to get to the bad apples hidden in the apples. The violence isn't ever provoked or unprovoked - it's always there, planned and hoped for by the ACAB thugs, and it happens when there's an opportunity and doesn't happen when there isn't an opportunity.

The comedy of all this comes from the rioters not giving a sh.t about whatever the protest is supposed to be about, while the people who care passionately about the cause give solidarity, both during and after, to the thugs who ruin their event.

It's pretty amazing to watch people on this thread provide excuses for violent misogynists who are delighted this mini riot has guaranteed the passing of this Bill and are looking forward to the future opportunities from illegal demonstrations.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by tom p » Tue Mar 23, 2021 2:18 pm

lpm wrote:
Tue Mar 23, 2021 1:22 pm
The police know - but the naive seem not to - that criminals and rioters get shielded by everyday protesters. When the violence starts the police needs to get to the bad apples hidden in the apples. The violence isn't ever provoked or unprovoked - it's always there, planned and hoped for by the ACAB thugs cops, and it happens when there's an opportunity and doesn't happen when there isn't an opportunity.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by secret squirrel » Wed Mar 24, 2021 10:45 am

lpm: What if we raged on behalf of the machine?

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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by tom p » Wed Mar 24, 2021 1:29 pm

secret squirrel wrote:
Wed Mar 24, 2021 10:45 am
lpm: What if we raged on behalf of the machine?
Toby Young tried that back around 2011ish. Nobody turned up, not even him

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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by lpm » Fri Mar 26, 2021 9:39 am

secret squirrel wrote:
Wed Mar 24, 2021 10:45 am
lpm: What if we raged on behalf of the machine?
Yes, you have come up with a good way to put it. For some, the objective is the rage. Doesn't really matter to them whether they are raging for or against some random thing.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Mar 26, 2021 10:03 am

lpm wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 9:39 am
secret squirrel wrote:
Wed Mar 24, 2021 10:45 am
lpm: What if we raged on behalf of the machine?
Yes, you have come up with a good way to put it. For some, the objective is the rage. Doesn't really matter to them whether they are raging for or against some random thing.
I think it's quite unlikely that they'd rally in support of removing the right to protest. Graffitiïng "Somebody Stop Me!" on a police station, perhaps?

It is quite odd to see somebody who spent so much time criticising and mocking the Trump regime parroting exactly the same talking points about "bussed-in antifa terrorists" that were used to discredit protests in the USA.

Of the thousands and thousands of people who've demonstrated against this bill, how many of them do you think fit your profile of random ragers, and why are you more focused on them than the well-intentioned majority?

Has a year locked down in the shires turned you into a Tory? ;)
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by lpm » Fri Mar 26, 2021 10:13 am

Bird on a Fire wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 10:03 am
I think it's quite unlikely that they'd rally in support of removing the right to protest.
Er... as lots of people have been saying, some of the police did indeed rally in support of removing the right to protest - and got nicely stuck in to a bit of aggro.

Millwall hooligans would be just as happy if they were West Ham hooligans. The "cause" is irrelevant.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Mar 26, 2021 10:20 am

Ok, so we have police doing police things and protesters doing protest things, some of whom are motivated more by their enjoyment of a good scrap than by any overriding ideology.

What was your point, exactly? You claimed that people on this thread were "providing excuses for violent misogynists", which appears to be bollocks.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Little waster » Fri Mar 26, 2021 10:43 am

Here's one reaction to the protests which is erm, yeah. https://www.theguardian.com/politics/20 ... -standards

And he still going on https://twitter.com/ITVNewsPolitics/sta ... 2673408004

As an aside has anyone seen Armando Iannucci recently?
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by lpm » Fri Mar 26, 2021 10:52 am

Bird on a Fire wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 10:20 am
Ok, so we have police doing police things and protesters doing protest things, some of whom are motivated more by their enjoyment of a good scrap than by any overriding ideology.

What was your point, exactly? You claimed that people on this thread were "providing excuses for violent misogynists", which appears to be bollocks.
Huh? There's been a whole string of posts on this thread and a couple of other threads that directly attempt to justify the violence.

A small minority trashes a protest we all agree with - and people jump up to support that small minority. Your comparison to the US is 180 degrees opposite to the way you presented it: people who would never defend the violent rioters at Capitol Hill somehow find themselves defending violent rioters at a Bristol police station. It's total hypocrisy to condemn "look what you made me do" when violent men assault their wives but then trot out "look what you made me do" when violent men assault the police.

Bad faith arguments always rebound on the user eventually.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:04 am

I've seen posts saying that the violence broke out after police escalated tensions. I've not seen posts saying "so that's all ok then".

The police know that they need to get shots of protesters behaving badly for their friends in the media to publish. So after hours of peaceful protest they start kettling, dragging people, hitting people, etc., and after that the crowd behaviour as a whole changes. Acknowledging that well-documented order of events - played out at countless protests over the years - isn't excusing the violence. But it does seem pretty clear that as long as the police restrained their violent impulses the protesters were largely able to restrain the violent impulses in their midst.

Everybody would prefer non-violent protests. The issue here has been that the police response made that far more difficult to achieve - the opposite of what they should be doing.

As long as you accept that people do have the right to protest peacefully, the police and protesters need to work together to stop violence breaking out. The opposite happened in these cases.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by lpm » Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:28 am

Let's try that "but he was provoked" argument another way:
I've seen posts saying that the violence broke out after his wife escalated tensions. I've not seen posts saying "so that's all ok then".

The wife knows her husband will behave violently when provoked. After hours of peaceful bickering she starts to get angry, shout abuse and belittle him, and after that the husband's behaviour as a whole changes. Acknowledging that well-documented order of events - played out at countless rows over the years - isn't excusing the violence. But it does seem pretty clear that as long as the wife restrained her anger the husband was largely able to restrain the violent impulses in his nature.

Everybody would prefer non-violent arguments. The issue here has been that the wife's response made that far more difficult to achieve - the opposite of what she should be doing.

As long as you accept that people do have the right to argue peacefully, the wife and husband need to work together to stop violence breaking out. The opposite happened in these cases.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Stephanie » Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:39 am

that is a f.cking stupid argument lpm. the police are not a scared wife.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:45 am

I'm not sure that analogy really works.

We're talking about violence. The police have weapons, and are trained and permitted to use them. If a group of institutionally violent, armed wives trapped a group of unarmed, peaceful husbands in a confined space and started grabbing them, shoving them, brandishing weapons etc we'd have an analogous situation. I'm finding it hard to imagine the situation, especially as the typical power dynamics are completely reversed.

But if this group of peaceful husbands had assembled to complain about the wives' violent behaviour, and the wives responded with violence, I don't think the wife posse would escape criticism.

That's completely removed from any realistic discussion of domestic violence though, so I'm not really happy with the comparison.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:46 am

Ninjad - Steph put it more succinctly.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by lpm » Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:47 am

Stephanie wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:39 am
that is a f.cking stupid argument lpm. the police are not a scared wife.
And the violent men who disrupted the Clapham vigil and trashed the Bristol protest are not our progressive allies - they are our enemies who need to be driven away.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Stephanie » Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:50 am

lpm wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:47 am
Stephanie wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:39 am
that is a f.cking stupid argument lpm. the police are not a scared wife.
And the violent men who disrupted the Clapham vigil and trashed the Bristol protest are not our progressive allies - they are our enemies who need to be driven away.
So then... make that point? Trying to position the police as some cowed force is not to your credit.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by lpm » Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:52 am

Bird on a Fire wrote:
Fri Mar 26, 2021 11:45 am
I'm not sure that analogy really works.

We're talking about violence. The police have weapons, and are trained and permitted to use them. If a group of institutionally violent, armed wives trapped a group of unarmed, peaceful husbands in a confined space and started grabbing them, shoving them, brandishing weapons etc we'd have an analogous situation. I'm finding it hard to imagine the situation, especially as the typical power dynamics are completely reversed.

But if this group of peaceful husbands had assembled to complain about the wives' violent behaviour, and the wives responded with violence, I don't think the wife posse would escape criticism.

That's completely removed from any realistic discussion of domestic violence though, so I'm not really happy with the comparison.
The overarching question across all these threads is how to deal with violent men.

The violent men who like to provoke protesters into violence, the violent men who look for opportunities to injure "the other side", the violent men who want to belittle, abuse and assault women.

The answer to this question is never to knee-jerk explain away their actions - even if they superficially look like progessive allies signed up to a cause we like.
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Bird on a Fire » Fri Mar 26, 2021 12:12 pm

That's fair. How do you think we should deal with violent people at protests?

I expect, FWIW, that some of them are sincere in their support for the cause and some are troublemakers. (Don't forget that this protest was about the new policing bill in general - the right to assembly, traveller communities, expanding police powers generally, as well as women's safety)

How do you think we should drive them away?
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Re: Reactions to protests

Post by Vertigowooyay » Fri Mar 26, 2021 12:54 pm

Police retract claims that officers suffered broken bones at Bristol protest
The Guardian has contacted Avon and Somerset police for clarification on why these claims were made and to request a list of the injuries sustained by officers policing Sunday night’s protest. The force had not replied by the time of publication.
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