Republican National Convention Protests  2004                       18 jscripts
                                                                                                                                           
.

New Yorkers Launch Huge Anti-Bush Banner with Balloons in Grand Central Terminal
(and walk away unhassled, amid cheers)


This action was conceived as a peaceful, provocative, visual message of protest against the Bush Administration's manipulation of fear and repression of dissenting voices and to show that many New Yorkers and US citizens stand opposed to the Bush Administration's exploitation of fear in the wake of 9/11. We are opposed to their lies, and the wars they have engendered.

PRESS RELEASE:     mirrored from newsgrist

PEACEFUL VISUAL PROTEST AGAINST BUSH ADMINISTRATION
MOUNTED IN GRAND CENTRAL TERMINAL

AUGUST 18, 2004
Today at 5:43 PM, a group of New Yorkers released a 15
-foot banner suspended by helium balloons in the main concourse of New York’s Grand Central Terminal.   The banner reads:

             NO
           BUSH
            LIES
           WARS

The banner now hangs from the Vanderbilt Avenue end of the Terminal’s vaulted ceiling, across from the large American Flag hanging above the eastern end of the concourse.   
PHOTOGRAPHS

serveral hours later, authorities had shot the balloons with rubber bullets
and brought down the banner from the Grand Central ceiling

The action was conceived as a peaceful visual message of protest against the Bush administration: Its exploitation of fear and uncertainty in the wake of September 11th, its lies, and the wars it has engendered.

Rather than healing the gaping wounds left by 9/11, Bush has bombarded us with lies.

Rather than acting to improve the nation’s anti-terrorism efforts, he has launched wars that have added to the violence and incited terrorists.

Rather than working with our allies and abiding by international laws, Bush has shown contempt for the United Nations, the Geneva Conventions, and other world governments.

Rather than reinforcing democratic and humane ideals, Bush used 9/11 to push through the Patriot Act and launch an assault on American civil liberties and freedom of expression.

The protesters chose Grand Central Terminal because it is a main artery of New York City, which will soon be infiltrated by a Republican Party that, through the President and its majority in Congress, has made this country and the world more ruthless and dangerous places.

The protesters have chosen to resist the climate of fear and to show that there are many New Yorkers and U.S. citizens who stand opposed to the war in Iraq, opposed to Bush’s foreign policy, and to the Republican Party’s neglect of actual needs such as jobs, healthcare, housing, education, and true national security.

Today’s action is part of a groundswell of visual, non-violent protest against the Bush administration that has surfaced despite the repressive climate this administration has fostered.

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Thursday, August 26, 2004 

The Naked Truth      Protesters  Chanting:

" BUSH :  STOP AIDS   DROP THE DEBT NOW "

from NY1 News  "A naked protest attracted a lot of attention outside Madison Square Garden today. A dozen members of the AIDS activist group, ACT UP, were arrested after they blocked traffic on Eighth Avenue in front of the site of the Republican Convention. This is the first set of protest arrests made outside of the Garden. They protested the Bush Administration's position on AIDS around the world.  'This protest is to tell the naked truth to President Bush and the Republican Party,' said Robert Dabney, who kept his clothes on to talk to reporters. 'Our protestors are demanding number one that the president support full debt cancellation for the poorest nations in the world.'  Police waited some 15 minutes before handcuffing protesters. They were then led into police vehicles. No word on how long they will remain in police custody."

from Crains NY Business: The same day it was reported that Naked Boys Singing would be dropped from the roster of officially sanctioned theater shows for RNC visitors next week, a group of men and women took their brand of political theater to the streets: About a dozen members of ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) stripped naked in front of Madison Square Garden, where the GOP convention will take place, to protest the Bush administration’s AIDS policies. The goal was to tell “the naked truth to President Bush,” a member of ACT UP told reporters. “Our protestors are demanding number one that the president support full debt cancellation for the poorest nations in the world,” he said, according to NY1. Traffic, which was already congested because of security-related street closures, was reportedly brought to a halt for 15 minutes before 11 of the protestors were arrested.

from Newsday  by the Associated Press   
ACT UP stages naked protest near Madison Square Garden.

A group of AIDS activists stripped naked Thursday in front of the site of the upcoming Republican National Convention, demanding that President Bush make good on his promise to help HIV-positive people in underdeveloped countries.

Two members of ACT UP climbed atop a parked rig on West 33rd Street opposite Madison Square Garden and held a sign reading "W: Drop the Debt. Stop AIDS." Protest organizer Eustacia Smith, 36, said the two were arrested along with nine others.
They were arrested after standing in the buff for about 10 minutes, their bodies painted with the same inscription, their arms locked and chanting "Drop the Debt. Stop AIDS."

"Countries are spending all the money they have on paying off debt ... when they could be spending that money on prevention of HIV," said Smith, a social worker in Brooklyn.  Other naked protesters escaped arrest by quickly putting on their clothes and walking away, Smith said.  Another activist, 40-year-old Kris Hermes, said the group staged the protest four days before the Republican convention begins, to make sure their message didn't get "drowned out" by what is expected to be a barrage of protests.  The charges against the protesters were not immediately released by police.

from Voice of America  (excerpt)

Police received their first test on Thursday, when about a dozen AIDS activists ran into the street outside Madison Square Garden. Bearing no high-tech weaponry, these protesters just took off their clothes and brought traffic to a complete standstill.  A local New York television reporter described the scene live, saying "the protesters appear to be on the ground, resisting arrest from what I can see here. We have another camera angle that is closer to the scene. Again this is the group 'Act Up.' It is an AIDS organization, and now police cars are coming down. I can't believe they haven't been arrested as of yet. Okay, now they are in handcuffs. We apologize if any of the video is graphic but these people are naked."  The demonstrators had painted "Drop the Debt" on their backs, protesting what they called the Bush administration's failure to relieve massive debts owed by many African countries, especially nations that are struggling with the AIDS epidemic.


PRESS RELEASE     For Release: 26 August 2004

THE NAKED TRUTH: EMPEROR BUSH HAS NO CLOTHES



IN RNC PROTEST, AIDS ACTIVISTS BARE ALL TO SHOW LACK OF COMPASSION IN BUSH AIDS PROGRAMS; URGE BUSH TO JOIN OTHER G-7 NATIONS TO CANCEL 100% OF POOR NATIONS' DEBTS TO FIGHT AIDS

(New York) - A group of AIDS activists led by members of ACT UP New York told the naked truth about the harmful impact of the Bush Administration's AIDS policies today. During a demonstration on the eve of the Republic National Convention (RNC), naked AIDS activists wearing nothing but the words "Bush, Stop AIDS, Drop the Debt Now" painted on their backs locked arms, chanting and entering the street surrounded by massive banners. The activists criticized Bush's refusal to support 100% debt cancellation to fund the fight against AIDS in 50 of the world's poorest countries, and his refusal to pay the U.S.'s fair share to multilateral, evidence-based AIDS interventions such as the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria. Bush's record on AIDS is expected to figure prominently during an RNC targeting moderate swing voters in battleground states.

"When it comes to fighting the AIDS crisis, Emperor Bush has no clothes," said Amanda Lugg of ACT UP. "Bush will come to New York and continue his empty posturing about his failed AIDS programs. The U.S. response to the pandemic has been inadequate. Compassion demands real action, not empty rhetoric."

At their most recent summit in June, the G-7 leaders discussed a proposal for 100% cancellation of debts owed by some poor countries to the IMF and World Bank; President Bush refused to support the proposal. On October 1 the G-7 Finance Ministers, including U.S. Treasury Secretary John Snow, will meet to decide whether or not to move forward with the proposal. The proposal will not advance if President Bush objects, activists say.

The world's poorest nations spend billions repaying debts to international financial institutions and donors-money that is urgently needed for life saving AIDS treatment and prevention programs. African countries alone spend $15 billion each year on debt repayment. One-third of the world's 40 million people living with HIV live in a heavily debt-burdened country.

"This Administration has the opportunity to join with other G7 countries and call for 100% debt forgiveness for 50 of the world's poorest countries during the RNC, freeing up billions to fund the fight against AIDS," said Mark Milano of ACT UP New York. "8500 people die every day with AIDS because countries are too poor to pay for life saving treatment. 5 million people were infected with HIV in 2003 alone. President Bush could make debt cancellation a reality-but he is choosing not to."

The activists are also demanding that the U.S. live up to its commitments to the Global Fund; Bush is lobbying for a 64% cut in US contributions to the Global Fund in FY2005. The Global Fund is unable to launch a new funding round, and renewal of existing grants is jeopardized, in large part because of U.S. stinginess. "This Administration has demonstrated its disdain for multilateral cooperation on most foreign policy issues. Bush's short-changing of the Global Fund in favor of the bilateral President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) is a key example," said Kaytee Riek of ACT UP.

A recent report by the Government Accounting Office found that domestic policies are a major obstacle to U.S. efforts to scaling up access to treatment through PEPFAR. These policies include the Bush Administration's obstruction of the procurement of cheap generic medicines and the subordination of evidence based approaches to HIV prevention to ideologically driven, unproven prevention programs.

  see more photos at  www.healthgap.org/rnc.html  and  indymedia

UPDATE September 28th  Charges Could Be Dropped

QUOTES ABOUT THE DEBT

 SEE ALSO : ACT UP INSIDE THE REPUBLICAN CONVENTION BELOW




Another cool protest on Thursday: a banner outside the Plaza Hotel.

The banner read "Truth" with an arrow pointing one way, and "Bush," with an arrow pointing in the opposite direction. Police were slow to respond, and by the time they arrived on the scene the banner was ready to be unfurled. Police attempted to rush up with a team of specialists with climbing gear and stop the banner from being dropped, but arrived too late. A large crowd gathered and media from around the world eventually arrived on the scene.

NBC CHANNEL 4 NEWS          




  excerpted from james wagner blog   posted on August 17, 2004

"A REPUBLIC, IF YOU CAN KEEP IT " .
                                        
– Benjamin Franklin

Michael Bloomberg has dug in his heels, insisting that hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers and their guests will not be given a safe or appropriate venue for a protest rally scheduled for less than two weeks from today.

Already in March, in testimony before the City Council Public Safety Committee, the Manhattan District Attorney Robert Morgenthau said that he expects 1000 arrests per day before and during the Convention, and that his office would be hard-pressed to handle the dramatic increase.  The police are studying a specially-published guidebook on dealing with "dangerous" demonstrators, and they have been infiltrating the meetings of protesters and march and rally planners.

Only some demonstrators planning to appear August 29th will be aware that a little-reported exceptional court ruling will allow Morgenthau's office to introduce previously court-sealed records of prior arrests for civil disobedience in order to award harsher penalties to those arraigned for activity during the Convention.

For many weeks, beginning even before the Democratic Convention in Boston, the FBI has been terrorizing dissent through its questioning of potential political demonstrators, and their friends and their families, about their plans to protest, issuing subpoenas in some cases.  All of these statements and activities have a chilling effect on legitimate expressions of dissent, but they also have the effect of radicalizing both the police and demonstrators who will not be easily discouraged.

If it already seems like the streets of New York on August 29th may end up looking and feeling something like many German cities did in the early 1930's, then we won't be surprised when the contemporary equivalent of fascist Brownshirts arrive that weekend to engage the protesters.

Let Bloomberg know how you feel about the rights of speech and assembly.  NOT IN OUR NAME reminds us, "It's not about the grass" and suggests we "politely" protest the city's denial of a permit for the rally in Central Park on August 29 by emailing Mayor Bloomberg or by calling his office at 212-788-3000, and send a fax to 212-788-2460. Also let the Parks Commissioner, Adrian Benepe, know how you feel by calling his office at 212-360-1305.

UPDATE   Sunday, August 29th

HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS joined the United for Peace and Justice  March on Sunday. The "World Says No to the Bush Agenda" marched past the site of the Republican National Convention, and was a massive and inspiring outpouring of dissent. We estimate that at least 500,000 people join us on this march, with the crowd stretching for close to two miles through city streets for six full hours. The final destination for our march was Union Square, where we concluded our historic march.  Union Square, of course, is the place where so many New Yorkers gathered spontaneously after September 11, to express our grief at the terrible attack on our city and our conviction that this attack not be used to justify more killing and war. Of course, many thousands converged afterwards on Central Park's Great Lawn for a festive celebration of public space and the right to free assembly. Sunday's protest was the largest ever at a U.S. political convention.

from the New York Times: "A roaring two-mile river of demonstrators surged through the canyons of Manhattan yesterday in the city's largest political protest in decades, a raucous but peaceful spectacle that pilloried George W. Bush and demanded regime change in Washington.  On a sweltering August Sunday, the huge throng of protesters marched past Madison Square Garden, the site of the Republican National Convention opening today, and denounced President Bush as a misfit who had plunged America into war and runaway debt, undermined civil and constitutional rights, lied to the people, despoiled the environment and used the presidency to benefit corporations and millionaires."

from NYC Indymedia: The group Queer Fist! held a kiss-in today in Times Square, making out in front of the theaters where the delegates of the Republican National Convention were watching Broadway plays. The kiss-in was ended when the cops boxed in the group as they were walking down the sidewalk, mass arresting them.  We'll forgive the cops this time because we know they're jealous.  Learning the Blues: Police conducted indiscrimate arrests of large groups of people without warning in the Theater District Sunday evening, catching protestors, bystanders, legal observers and some members of the press in their nets, while Republican Convention delegates attended a number of Broadway productions as guests of The New York Times.





                          WAR MENTALITY

Up to 50,000 officers, many reassigned from narcotics and other duties, will be part of an enormous show of force around Madison Square Garden. That display will include special heavily armed "Hercules" antiterror squads, snipers and phalanxes of officers set up around the arena to search buses and trucks before they enter the area. In addition to the helicopters, several of which can feed close-up video surveillance images to mobile command centers on the ground, 26 launches will patrol waterways, and officers will use 181 bomb-sniffing dogs, many of them borrowed from other law enforcement agencies.


from JamesWagner blog  August 27, 2004 and later posts  

This is the image which accompanies the lead story on the CNN site at this moment. The headline on the front page: "New York stands guard."  I see it as, "Republican Guards hold up New York." We are an occupied city this week, as I listen to the sirens wailing up and down the avenues and helicopters scanning with high-powered searchlights as they whop, whop, whop overhead.

I'm punching this post into my blog as we're listening to a remarkable webstream reporting tonight's ongoing, historical Critical Mass through the streets of Manhattan, including live accounts by the cyclist participants. There are reports that scores of people have been arrested already -- for bicycling while smiling. The police are funnelling them into police vans and buses, chasing away the public and prohibiting photographs.

In the end, 50,000 cops in one city are going to find something to keep them amused.  Bloomberg and Kelly are doing Bush's work. Nothing could be more effective in radicalizing and provoking orderly protests than this outrageous over-reaction.

     
UPDATE: The Washington Post reports that nearly 250 bicyclists were arrested. This is insane!   see bloggy

This kind of governmental response to imagined or real civil threats is both cynical and ineffective, the proper application of the adjectives depending on which alarmists and which planners they are attached to, but the thing will feed on itself; in a climate of fear fed by ignorance we're already seeing that there is no effective way to object to increasing the government's control over our daily lives and our liberties when it invokes the spectre of terror.  What are they protecting, our security or their own? How much longer do they expect us to believe this is all about our safety and not their power? I'm afraid that in the case of too many of us the answer may be "forever."

          

Saturday, August 28th

March for Women's Lives was both a summons and an appellation today. Thousands of activists ended up with a rally at the edge of New York's elegant little City Hall after a march over the Brooklyn Bridge this afternoon.  The enthusiastic crowd was intent on ensuring that the issues of reproductive health remain part of the national political dialogue. The idea was to defend all of these (global family planning, real sex education, accessible, safe and legal abortion, birth control options, the right to privacy regarding sexuality, and equal access to health care) in the face of increasing onslaughts from a powerful and fanatical radical Right Wing.  

Monday, August 30th   Opening Day of the RNC

ACT UP marched clothed with Still We Rise  and the Poor People's March

 

 aerial view                       New York rolls out the unwelcome mat
for the Republican National Convention


POOR PEOPLE'S MARCH ATTACKED
NY1 News reported escalated police behavior tonight -- running police motorcycles, barricades and bikes into
crowds -- with their own reporters caught in the middle. The footage looks frightening.  An ABC reporter for
Nightline was also caught up in tonight's arrests. There was a comment made by the reporter as he was filming
and reporting -- showing police pushing barricades against people, and most importantly, he said, "Oh my God,
a cop just punched a guy." Additional footage on Fox 5 is clear: a badge-less undercover cop deliberately drove
his motorcyle into a crowd of people.  Despite mainstream media reports that a marcher attacked the police,
numerous eyewitness accounts told of police provocation

TOTAL ARRESTS TO DATE, AGAINST THE OCCUPATION :  600 - 650

GETTING ARRESTED  While the Police Department Monday commended its own for being "professional"
around protesters, members of the National Lawyers Guild lambasted the department and the city for their
treatment of convention-related prisoners.
  ARRESTED    < POLICE, THE MAYOR, and UPDATES

GIULIANI  REVISIONIST HISTORY

Tuesday, August 31st

Wall Street. 8:20 AM on Beaver St. (off of Broadway and Wall Street), a small group started weaving yarn (such "terrorism!") across the street. Plainclothes officers (they never wear badges or identification) immediately appeared and began tackling people, and there were 40-45 riot cops on the scene within a few minutes. About 10 of 12 people doing the action were arrested. One IMC videographer was arrested, and a legal observer may have been arrested as well.   photo

Police arrested about 200 protesters from a group called War Resisters League, which was marching about 1,000 strong from the former World Trade Center site toward the Garden. Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly said the group marched illegally in traffic, despite having agreed to stay on sidewalks, but New York Civil Liberties Union associate legal director Chris Dunn contested that account, saying no marchers left the sidewalks.  It was a bait-and-switch tactic by the police for arrests.  

07:14 PM
06:30 PM             from indimedia Breaking News
Marches are converging around Herald Square at 34th and 6th, heading towards the Garden. There are reports of police violence there. Multiple busses of riot police are around 32nd / 34th and 6th. Several police reportedly are not wearing badge numbers. Mass arrests are now occuring in Harold Square.

06:26 PM
At the NY Public Library, an older woman was hit in the face by an undercover cop, shocking those who witnessed the incident. Cops would not arrest the man despite the attempts of the woman who was struck.  COPS IN ACTION

06:20 PM
Protesters from the library are at 42nd and 6th. 40 cops on scooters ran after protesters with nets. Apx. 50 have been entrapped with nets. Police attacked protesters within the nets. Reports of a cop using a bike to hit someone. Several hundred are in the surrounding area.
Pepper spray is being deployed at Harold Square. There are at least 1000 protesters there. Spray victims are being handcuffed.

07:25 PM   
Herald Square Traffic Cam Panorama     see Traffic Cams  website

Political Reporter  
This is a news report about what I witnessed during the anti-Bush protest at 34th & Broadway Tuesday night between 6:30 and approximately 8 pm.  There were several hundred people at that intersection at the time, standing on the sidewalks chanting anti-Bush slogans. But nobody was trying to take the streets and the crowd was loud but peaceful. When the cop shoved the protester into the person in the wheelchair... LISTEN TO MORE


07:45 PM

OVERVIEW OF CURRENT SITUATION: Action is taking place all over the city. There are 3 main points, where events are unfolding - 16th street and Irving (near Union Sq.): mass arrests are imminent, reports of beatings and people not being allowed to leave. Harold Square (6th ave. between 34th and 36th): people are being beaten, pepper sprayed and contained. 28th and Broadway: War Resisters League has been holding a die-in of 50 people in the middle of the street.

08:22 PM

About 100 people broke away from Harold Sqaure, taking over the street on 28th just off of 5th. Police ran down Madison Ave chasing the group on bikes first then dropped bikes to pursue marchers on foot. People are being tackled and arrested. Protesters are now at park and 26th, shoved face-down on ground. Media is gathered at the corner, being pushed back.

09:21 PM

On the north side of west 35th street and 6th avenue reports of 50 violent arrests- people being thrown to the ground and against walls.

.   POLICE BREAK UP ANTI-WAR MARCH TODAY    The Washington Post  coverage
.   ESTIMATED MORE THAN 1000 PROTESTORS ARRESTED.  The Village Voice  coverage


Wednesday, September 1

Thousands of protesters, waving pink slips, formed a symbolic unemployment line stretching three miles from Wall Street to the site of the Republican National Convention this morning.  People for the American Way and the Imagine Festival created a 5,000-person strong "Unemployment Line" this morning on Broadway from Wall Street to Madison Square Garden, representing 1.2 million jobs lost under Bush.  STORY AND PHOTOS

"Protest Is Not a Crime!"  Demonstration this Morning
Around 250 people gathered in the "demonstration area" across from Pier 57 holding pen to call for the release of the protesters held inside. Representatives of several protest groups and the National Lawyers Guild spoke in front of the makeshift detention center at Pier 57 this morning both to congratulate the participants in this week's protests and to complain about "illegal" tactics used by the police, particularly ensnaring nonviolent protesters and even bystanders in orange netting.


ACT UP Inside the Republican Convention     Noon Time    

ACT UP ZAPS WHITE HOUSE CHIEF OF STAFF ANDREW CARD INSIDE THE RNC at the REPUBLICAN YOUTH CONFERENCE. Andrew Card was distracted for a moment when demonstrators, who had been sitting in the audience, stood up, stripped off their outer shirts to reveal t-shirts emblazoned with “Bush Lies. Stop AIDS. Drop the Debt Now” while chanting, blowing whistles, and unfurling a banner reading "Stop AIDS. Bush: Global AIDS Liar."  The young Republicans responded with violence, creating a melee. Secret Service agents removed the protesters, dragging them on the floor. Charges against the demonstrators are pending. 

  Press Releases and Responses  < YOUNG REPUBLICANS WHO LIE AND KICK WOMEN

ABC Channel 7 News telecast footage of a young Republican kicking young asian woman protester while on the ground.
The news reporter interviewed this young Republican afterwards, saying that cameras show him kicking a protester, to which
he just looks blankly into the camera for a good 5 seconds saying nothing.    QUICKTIME MOVIE

.
[one week later]  "Officially, the Secret Service does not concern itself with unarmed, peaceful demonstrators who
pose no danger to the commander in chief. But that policy was inoperative here Thursday when seven AIDS activists
who heckled President Bush during a campaign appearance were shoved and pulled from the room -- some by their hair,
one by her bra straps -- and then arrested for disorderly conduct and detained...." 
  The Washington Post


This Afternoon
Thousands of Labor Union members overwhelmed the "Free Speech Zone" below Madison Square Garden this afternoon, crowding into pens running down to 23rd Street. It was clear they wanted nothing to do with George W. Bush or the Republican Party, even if he and it were the occasion of an extraordinary rally called for the middle of a work week only days before Labor Day itself.   comments and photographs

07:00 PM
Media March convened around at 52nd and 6th ave. Approximately 1200 people roved down 6th to 50th and 48th Streets, protesting the various corporate media outlets: CBS, FOX, CNN, CNBC, etc.  

09:44 PM
Police are getting into formation at 34th and 11th at the "Killer Coke Protest," apparently readying to deploy arrest nets. Dispersal order given to small group of protesters at Coke protest. They smaller group is leaving, but there is a larger group staying there.

10:00 PM  Code Pink Women zaps Vice President Cheney during his Speech inside Madison Square Garden tonight and hauled away.     


protests today : there have been relatively orderly police responses, compared to the violent police escalations last night
(except for the responses by the secret service inside Madison Square Garden).




Thursday, September 2    Last Day

The National Lawyers Guild stated early this morning that the police have slowed arraignments of arrested protesters to a trickle because they want to hold them until Bush leaves town.  

State Supreme Court Justice's Habeas Corpus Ruling (shortly after noon):  protesters held for 38+ hours (120 people) must be relased by 1:00 or arraigned by 1:30; those that have been held for 36-38 (350 people) hours must be released by 3:00 or arraigned; those that have been held from 24-36 (90 people) hours must be released or arraigned by 5:00.  Additionally, a Judge has ruled that lawyers will not be denied access to inspect the conditions at Pier 57.  At 2:29 PM  The court just reconvened to check the City's compliance with the writ. As of 2:40 ony 27 of the 117 people who were supposed to be released by 1:30 have been released. The judge ordered that those not in court or the feeder pen must be released immedately. For the 3rd time in 24 hours the city is directly disobeying a court order.  4:07 PM  Update from Central Booking: According to Rick Best with the NLG and imcistas, the number of people still in jail are actually going UP as they "discover" new people. There are more than 1200 people still in jail as of 4:10, as of the hearing a few hours ago there were 510-- 768 new detainees have been "found."  4:25 The judge has just ruled that 470 people are to be released from Central Booking immediately. The crowd outside 100 Center St. is chanting: "470, let them go!"  The Judge has ordered city officials to process and release 560 anti-GOP protesters within hours after hearing that the detainees had all spent at least 36 hours in custody since their arrests. The defendants, including scores who had spent more than 38 hours in custody since police picked them up on Tuesday, must be arraigned or brought to the holding pens at the arraignment courts by 5 o'clock this afternoon.  5:55 PM The City of NY has now been found in contempt of court; fine of $1000 levied for every person not released per. 1:00pm court order. There will be a further reportback at 7:00pm room 1317 of 100 Centre St.  Open to public.

State Supreme Court Justice John Cataldo ordered the immediate release of nearly 500 protesters Thursday, just hours before President Bush was to speak at the Republican National Convention. protesters are freed, including some who had been awaiting arraignment for almost three days.  "These people have already been the victims of a process," the judge told the city's top lawyer. "I can no longer accept your statement that you are trying to comply."    READ MORE


08:05 AM
AIDS Activist Banners in Grand Central.  New York commuters were greeted at Grand Central Station by about 100 demonstrators from Housing Works unfurled banners and releasing colorful balloons urging President Bush to do more in the fight against AIDS.  As they chanted "Fight AIDS Not Iraq," demonstrators positioned on staircases on either side of the concourse unfurled banners that read: "America has AIDS. Our next president must stop the plague." The demonstrators wore black T-shirts, some emblazoned with the words: "If Bush had AIDS what would he do?" There were 26 arrests.   indymedia

THIS AFTERNOON
 
Fountains at Washington Square, Metropolitan Museum, Columbus Circle, Lincoln Center, and the Brooklyn Museum have been dyed red to send the message, "Blood on Bush's Hands. No Empire."  City Hall Park Water Fountain was turned red!  They shut it down and closed the perimeter near the fountain. It is surrounded by the Parks Police & NYPD.  indymedia

    
Artists for Peacemarch and rally in Harlem
  
.Veterans Against the WarMemorial Rally at Union Square Park   Veteran's Family Story  indymedia

TONIGHT – THE LAST NIGHT     A  FEW  MORE  ARRESTS

United for Peace and Justice – the group that sponsored the historic pre-convention rally Sunday – has an evening rally and vigil protest at Union Square during Bush's Speech, with over 3000 people present (later marching to the Madison Square Garden vicinity).  The ANSWER Rally, outside of Madison Square Garden at 29th & 8th Avenue, has 5,000 to 6,000 people-- penned in by police barricades.  INSIDE THE RNC – two protesters from Code Pink demonstrated on the floor of the RNC while Bush was speaking, chanting "Bush Lied, People Died" and quckly hauled off by security.  SEE MOVIE LA Weekly

THE TOTAL NUMBER OF ARRESTS :  OVER 1,700 PEOPLE     GETTING ARRESTED

Judge Considering Probe Into Police Tactics, January 20, 2005


MOST RECENT UPDATE      APRIL 12, 2005

400 court cases dropped or acquitted because of video evidence contradicting POLICE LIES 
.                         READ MORE



      A  FEW  FINAL  REPORTS  PENDING




      civil disobedience training

Bush Speech at Republican National Convention    
"Bush Lied, People Died" 
     see index >  BUSHWACKED AIDS POLICIES


Don't trust the mainstream media exclusively for information. They're either too often ignoring what's really going on in New York this week or else their corporately-financed prattle simply mouths the words packaged by government public information sources. Do some homework; you'll be amazed at what you'll find.

  see the following website links  

  Republican Convention Not Welcomed

  Counter Convention

  NYC Independent Media Center   (nyc indymedia)

  Village Voice coverage


ACT UP