Gini Dietrich

People Protesting Peacefully at the G20

By: Gini Dietrich | June 30, 2010 | 

On this week’s InsidePR, Martin, Joe, and I spend a bit of time talking about the G20, how it was perceived to the U.S., how people protested peacefully, and not so peacefully, and where we were getting our news surrounding the conference.

But, as Martin and Joe continued the conversation about what G20 meant to Toronto and how the “news” was coming via Twitter from people not allowed inside, I couldn’t get my head around this video on Eric Portelance’s site .

It’s people protesting peacefully at the G20. I’ve watched it at least 12 times. I still can’t understand why this happened. Did they really wait until the national anthem was finished before charging?

What do you think??

About Gini Dietrich

Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She is the author of Spin Sucks, co-author of Marketing in the Round, and co-host of Inside PR. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and is the founder of Spin Sucks Pro. Join the Spin Sucks   community!

  • Gini on the surface a disturbing video, reminds me of footage I’ve seen over the years of the police reaction to protests at the 1968 Democratic convention here in Chicago. What we don’t know from the video are all of the circumstances. Did the police previously ask the crowd to disperse? Is this a heightened reaction to the thugs who were distroying property in the name of free speech? Sure does look like they waited ’til the end of the national anthem though.

  • Gini Dietrich

    You’re completely right, Roger. We don’t know what happened before or after. What blows my mind is that they’re all peacefully singing O Canada! And then, literally as soon as they’re finished, the police charge. It’s so odd to me.

  • Thanks for the link to my Tumblr, Gini!

  • BTW – I showed this to a friend of mine who is a police officer. For what it’s worth, his interpretation is that it’s obvious the crowd was warned to get off the street and didn’t listen. In his words:

    “It is totally obvious that the group has been told to clear the street. This by the way a few of the group walk forward, then sit down with their backs turned to the police. This shows they were asked, and they are showing their refusal.

    The police “charge” forward on the protestors (patriotic vocalists), and clear the street without even one single anthem singer hurt in the process! Did you see anyone hurt??

    It looks like great journalism to show the police charging forward, but if you look at the detail, they did their job without anyone getting hurt. What more could you ask for???”

    Definitely two sides to the story, it seems.

  • Gini Dietrich

    Hey Eric! You’re welcome…and thanks for the perspective. I think the reason I’m so perplexed is not because they were ushered out of the streets, but because the police made no movement until after the protestors finished singing the national anthem!

  • It seems to me that the Police, no matter what they do (or don’t do) are subject to criticism. Some of it is legitimate and a lot of it is unfounded and often unfair.
    Heaven forbid that the police be accused of being unpatriotic along with all the other accusations that tend to go their way. So, my hunch is that they waited until the National Anthem was finished to eliminate at least one negative thing that could potentially be thrown at them…Just a thought.

  • Dallas Kincaid

    They are Canadian. Probably high on moose meat and Molsons.

  • Ljuba

    They sure did wait until the end of the National Anthem. If you’ve ever watched Slapshot you’d understand. While we may know the snot balls out of each other before and after O Canada, while the anthem is being played or sung all else stops out of respect for this great country we live in.

    I am pretty sure this video was shot on Sunday, after the riots and destruction of Saturday. The police would have warned this crowd to move on. They chose not to and even decided that it was a good idea to sit in on the street. They got moved, no one was hurt and nothing was damaged.

    You should talk to nenabog, she was a marshall for the protest on Saturday and was there when the well organzied anarchists (if that isn’t an oxymoron then I have no idea what is)decided it was time to show their faces. Sorry, I stand corrected, they didn’t show their faces and used the very large crowd of peaceful protestors to hide among. While I can’t quite put my finger on it, I know I have seen this tact somewhere before.

    If anyone is itching to get up to the Muskokas but can’t, the fake lake might still be open to vistors in Toronto… Only in Canada!!!

  • Gini Dietrich

    HAHAHA TStone! We talked about the fake lake on the podcast! And Gwen, you’re absolutely right…I just think it’s pretty funny that they show their patriotism before they move people out of the street.

  • Pilar Iglesias

    I have to admit, when I first saw this video I too was perplexed. I do believe that the G20 was a no-win situation for the police. No matter what they did or how they reacted (or didn’t react), they would undergo intense scrutiny. For what it’s worth – being here in the middle of it all – I don’t think it was too bad in the end.

  • Ljuba, I LOVE the “Slapshot” reference! Love it!

  • Idea: Buy one of those hats with the beer feeder (you know, the ones Packer fans wear?) and attach a Flip to it. Potential for extreme close-up, but it could work. I had the exact same conversation with a few friends last year about how to do a video post while running a 5K. Either that or hire a 100K film crew to follow you using one of those cameras on wheels you see in the movies. Given your success, I’d probably go for that option. Yeah, definitely option #2. 😉

    Re: vacation blogging, I actually asked a few folks to guest blog at my place while I was in St. John last year. My strategy was approach a few people who didn’t have a current blog and give them a platform and a voice. Each one of them accepted and went on to write a great post. Turned out to be a great community-building strategy!