Sunday, May 01, 2011

Protest Everything

Yesterday, in case you didn't know or care, was "May Day".

I happened to find myself walking with friends through Hyde Park when the May Day protest was taking place.

According to the Wikipedia entry:
May Day is synonymous with International Workers' Day, or Labour Day, a day of political demonstrations and celebrations organised by communists, anarchists, socialists, and activist groups.

That sums up what I saw. Usual rent a crowd, basically protesting everything. The CFMEU protest truck summed up the confused need to protest every possible cause, supporting "worker safety" "Justice for indigenous Australia" and, like every Miss Universe winner in recent history... "World Peace".

What was interesting were the number of Arab groups protesting. Ostensibly they were supporting the downfall of Arab dictators (something I support too) and there were calls for Syria's Assad to go as well as Iran's Ahmadinajad.

Naturally there were a small handful of Jew-hating pinkos and Islamists trying to lead the crowd in chants of "Free Palestine". When I say small handful, I mean a girl with a megaphone trying to motivate a completely disinterested crowd, and a man, also with his own megaphone, responding. I'd say the other Arab groups there saw them for what they were.

At the very start of the video, you will hear her shout, "Free free free, free free free!" Very clever stuff.


Little do they know, that given the opportunity, Hamas would ensure "Palestine" was about as "Free" as Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia and other dictatorships.

An Australian organisation called Trade Unions Linking Israel and Palestine - TULIP was founded to promote sensible worker-driven peace initiatives and their site is well worth a read.

I overheard another girl standing alone on the footpath shouting "Free Palestine". I assumed she was giving away a Free Palestine with every copy of Green Left Weekly purchased but I wasn't interested.

Didn't get video, but loved the angry shaven-headed, heavily pierced girl leading about ten comrades in a chant of "1,2,3,4, what do we want? Class War! 5, 6, 7, 8, organise and smash the state". Yes, well. Try organising a few more people first.

The music was 'diverse' to say the least. A bagpipe group was playing (as heard in the video) and the main amplified music on stage was a Turkish woman singing in Turkish and Arabic, frequently 'ululating' and singing other classic Australian worker songs. Not.

At least May 1 this year was on a Sunday, so they didn't shut down streets and frustrate all those other people who actually have a job.

The whole thing just seemed confused and pointless.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like Blair's Law in action.

12:25 PM  

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