27.6.10

Toronto G20- Black Bloc- Photographs




I don't usually comment on politics because it is not polite to discuss money, religion or politics.  That is what I was taught that is what I am teaching my monkeys.
However, I have been consumed with this as my parents live a few subway stops from where it happened.
I am sad that a group of political activist caused damage to Toronto and gave our city a stained reputation. 

Torontonians would never make Toronto look bad, we love our city.

 These amazing photographs were taken by Oliver Lavery who's downtown office was not far from where all this took place:



Toronto and Canada in general are very liberal and encourage peaceful protesting- for it to have turned violent and destructive is completely out of character.

The group of violent protesters who damaged Toronto's downtown yesterday is a group referred to as the Black Bloc whose tactics include having individuals wear black clothing, scarfs, balaclavas, or helmets to concealing their faces. 
The clothing is used to avoid being identified, and to, theoretically, appear as one large mass, promoting solidarity or creating the illusion of a larger group.The tactic was developed in the 1980s by anti-nuclear activist autonomists. Black blocs gained broader media attention outside Europe during the 1999 anti-WTO demonstrations, when a black bloc damaged property of GAP, Starbucks, Old Navy, and other retail locations in downtown Seattle.  [Yesterday] during the 2010 G20 Summit, a black bloc riot damaged an Urban Outfitters, American Apparel, Adidas Store, Starbucks and many banking establishments in Toronto.
I don't usually use Wikipedia as an academically credible source of information but I have read dozens of articles and feel that this information is accurate and am therefore siting it here.

To see more of Oliver Lavery's photography check out: http://www.flickr.com/photos/oliverlavery/

18 comments:

Julia, the Thanksgiving Girl said...

Oh my God :(( Those are great photos, but the whole thing looks and sounds scary!

msihua said...

Goodness... stay safe! Lock your parents up until the G20 is over!

Krystal said...

that is just insane. I was looking at pics on a friends FB and it looked scary/sad. all the poor businesses with the busted windows. I just don't get it, you know??

The Polka Dot Closet said...

It is really surprising and unexpected! Toronto is not a place usually associated with this kind of unrest. The summit is over, hope you are all safe!

Carol

Chara Lynn said...

Im not a political person either but this is insane. What was gained from it? Nothing! Imagine that...
Thank you for sharing.
Stay Fabulous
Chara
http://charasjewelcandy.blogspot.com/

Twig and Toadstool said...

Scary pictures...I don't know what to make of all of this. Funny that with the 1000's of extra police officers that no one caught onto these "anarchists" and what they were up to. It's making me a bit of a conspiracy theorist!!!
So sad though for the people of Toronto...having to endure the poor choices made my the leaders of this country, (I mean, is downtown Toronto really a suitable place for a G-20 Summit???)

maureen

amy @ switz~art said...

Although a proud Canadian, I'm so disheartened by the behaviour presented by the protestors at the G20. There are so few articles about what was discussed in the G20 and so many focusing on the ridiculous acts of violence and vandalism. What I also find unfathomable are the protestors lashing out at the amount of money spent on the G8/G20 (which is atrocious, but still...), but they are the ones causing huge amounts of $$ to be spent on security?!
Thankfully, it wrapped up today, but I feel terrible for the innocent bystanders and business owners that are left affected by this nonsense.

Dancing Branflake said...

This is so sad. So so sad. I feel bad for them for being terrorists- they obviously have issues that are putting others in peril. I'm sorry but thank you for sharing this. Opened my eyes very wide.

Mary said...

I hope you parents are not intimidated by these demonstrations. The background you've have provided for those of us not near Toronto is fascinating. Is Lavery a professional photographer? The images are riveting. I hope you are having a good day. Blessings...Mary

Lenore @ Lather. Write. Repeat. said...

It is pretty depressing. I just shake my head when I watch the news. This just makes us all look bad as Canadians to the rest of the world.

Le blÖg d'Ötli said...

Violence is not politic... We have to denounce it !

Thanks for this "report" and the link !

tulpen said...

Another reason to not watch the news.

Pat Tillett said...

These are the same anarchists who travel around and cause trouble everywhere...

Ren- Lady Of The Arts said...

Julia- I agree, great photos-

msihua- I agree- and it's over now.

Krystal- I feel bad for the small businesses too- esp since these Black Bloc were targeting 'big' capitalist companies- but it is my understanding that small ones were affected as well.

Carol- Not the Toronto I know at all which is what prompted me to write about this-

Chara- Nothing gained- just a tarnished reputation for Toronto.

Amy- it is my understanding that it was not the Toronto protestors that had anything to do with this- It was the BLACK BLOC- this was my main reason for writing this post- I don't want others to think that Torontonian's would do this- We would not- I think that on the whole we are proud of our city and would never support anything that would cause international embarassment - This was a TACTFULLY organized act of vandalism by Black Bloc members whether they are Canadian or American or any other nationality- I don't for a moment believe that the vandalism was caused by the peaceful Torontians who- Yes, were protesting but it was the BLACK BLOC who created the violence. Even our PM said that our country encourages peaceful protesting-

Maureen- I don't blame the Toronto Police at all- it is a method of the Black Bloc to escape arrest by wearing black clothing and then to take it off and blend into the crowd, theoretically appearing as one large mass. The tactic was developed in the 1980s by anti-nuclear activist autonomists.

Dancing- I feel sorry for them too.

Mary- Thank you for your comment! I don't know anything more about the photographer except from his twitter account- I though his photographs were amazing too.

Leonore- I know.

Le Blog- I agree with you 100 percent!

Tulpen- I never watch the news either- I read it.

Pat- THANK YOU- Yes it is a group that travels the WORLD- again NOT TORONTONIANS.

Thank you all for your comments- I am totally out of my comfort zone and don't want to talk about it anymore- I should probably follow my own advice because this just works me up- Plus it's over and what's been done is done.
PLUS- I write an ARTS blog!!!

Phoenix said...

Damn. How sad that people feel they have to resort to violence to get their point across. I'm all for personal and individual freedom of expression but destroying property? I don't care what it is in the name of... that's just completely ignorant and dangerous.

Lovely World said...

Thank you for making this post. I have followed some of the news coming out of Toronto. While I completely understand the complex issues that surround these WTO talks, I have a difficult time understanding this violence. Many of them are anarchists - what it is they really want to accomplish? Chaos? Protest is important. This violence seems senseless.

Karumen said...

this is totally ugly. if the protesters have something to say, what does destroying some shop fronts help? why can someone say protesting violently, harrasing ppl with langauge, "freedom of speech" or "human rights"? *major sigh*

Dani said...

Pathetic.

I have the same rule: Blog Land and Facebook Land are a-political for me. Rarely will I step into that arena in those forums.

It's sad too because a lot of those big capitalist companies are franchises and are operated by individuals...that affects them directly, not the huge company as a whole.

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