CANADIAN POLITICS LONDON:
IS A POSTER "PROPERTY DESTRUCTION" ?:
While the police forces of Ontario and a good part of the rest of Canada are being drained to put on the massive show of force in downtown Toronto (who cares if there are a few more murders and a lot more robberies as long as those 'goddamn protesters' can be intimidated ?)the police in one other southern Ontario city, London Ontario, have been busy doing their little bit to stop the collapse of civilization. That is they were arresting two individuals for the heinous crime of putting up posters opposing the G20 summit in Toronto.
Now Molly knows that London Ontario is hardly unique in this regard. There are moves afoot by one city councillor here in Winnipeg to have postering outlawed, and there are numerous other cities where it is already illegal. This "crime" of course defies enforcement. One can only imagine the outrage if a city has to waste resources on a "poster police" to go around and tear down every single ad for stray cats on power poles and every single garage sale sign on boulevards. Quite frankly whenever I visit a different city I find these unauthorized signs infinitely more interesting than the legally permitted commercial advertising.
Down in London Ontario the anal retentive absurdity is somewhat less as the enforcement is targeted ie enforced against political opponents of the G20, part of the campaign to create paranoia that Canadian governments are obviously engaged in. Some in that city are not going to stand for this persecution. Here's a press release from the Ontario platformist organization Common Cause about what happened and the 'mass postering' response to the ham handed attempt at censorship.
June 22, 2010
For Immediate Release:
LONDON ACTIVISTS TARGET OF POLICE INTIMIDATION
The recent arrests of two London activists for “promoting disturbance” represent yet another dramatic escalation in the Canadian state’s ongoing attempts to criminalize dissent.
We denounce these arrests as the shameful police intimidation tactics they are, and declare our solidarity with the two individuals arrested - including our organization’s youngest member, Andrew Cadotte.
It is clear that politicians and police officers in this country are more than willing to bend the rules to try and intimidate those seeking to challenge the continued domination of the poor by the rich.
By referring to postering as “property destruction”, the police are attempting to build a psychological connection between lawful dissent and violence where no such connection exists.
The police cited the “negative message” of the posters as grounds for holding these individuals overnight in jail. But the true “negative messages” plastered around the city are in the sexist advertisements that promote women as emotionless commodities, and on the countless billboards that sell apathetic consumerism as a way of life.
Public space should belong to the community, not to corporations, and should be a space where we can freely express our ideas as part of the democratic process. This freedom must be regularly exercised and vigorously defended, or else it will be trampled on by the repressive nature of the state.
This is why several of our members joined with the direct action on Thursday, June 17th that covered our city’s downtown core with the very posters our comrades were arrested for putting up two nights earlier.
As anarchists and social justice activists, we have every intention to continue “promoting disturbance” of the capitalist status quo, guided by our undying commitment to international class struggle and, ultimately, revolution.
Common Cause - London
Common Cause is an anarchist organization with branches in London, Hamilton, Toronto and Ottawa.
P.O. Box 347, Station E
772 Dovercourt Rd.
Toronto, ON, Canada,
Online Forum: http://anarchistblackcat.org/viewforum.php?f=61