i know that i already posted this, a long long time ago, but given that the olympics have now officially started, i thought i'd post it again.
The Opening Ceremonies were last night, and yesterday afternoon/evening there was a huge march from the Vancouver Art Gallery to BC Place, where the opening ceremonies were. i was so amazed and inspired by how many people were there, and despite what mainstream media is reporting, the vast vast majority of the people marching were united in their reasons.
a lot of the time we get ourselves into a position (we being the left) of being really divided, because we all focus on different things. but yesterday was definitely about the games, about the games taking place on unceded native land, about the need for low income housing, about broken promises of using athletes housing for low income housing, about the environmental impact of the games, about the massive government cuts to social services and the arts, just in time to show off the sanitized and stolen "arts and culture" of this area, about the refusal to provide additional funding for social programs that will experience a huge increase in use during the olympics (such as battered women's support) due to the influx of tourists, about the "cleaning up" of the downtown eastside (poorest postal code in canada, for those that don't know) by physically moving homeless people to other areas, into shelters against their will, or arresting them for things like jaywalking just to get them off the streets so that the tourists don't have to see them, about the massive overspending and the debt we will be left with, and finally, the compromises to our civil rights and the huge amount of military and security personnel in vancouver waiting to enforce them. and that's just the short version of it, really! if you're interested in learning more, the vancouver media co-op has lots of pretty current updates on their site, as well as some explanatory videos.
i tried to take some pictures, but frankly, i'm freaking short! i ended up getting a lot more pictures of people's heads than i'd have liked. but i did get pictures of some of the signs, there were so many more! there were a lot more about native land, but most of them were banners, and banners were the hardest to get clear photos of.
the vancouver art gallery. this barely barely shows the people there. there were so many more behind us and on the other side of the lawn.
blurry, i know, but it was one of the more creative signs. plus, we talk a lot about the child poverty rate, which is atrocious, but we don't talk nearly enough about our seniors and our elders and their inability to access resources. i am so thankful that my relatives don't live in this province.
(you might think it looks like a joint that they've drawn here. no, that's the olympic torch. it just happens to look like a joint, that's all!)
this is what greeted us at the end of the march. rows and rows of cops in riot gear.
for a peaceful protest. see above re: civil rights.
I love this. As a supporter of both Native and Homeless rights, I completely agree with you! Another person I know has referred to the Olympics as the "5 c*ck rings of death" I know my boycotting of the games won't do anything, but it's an ethical choice
Oh, now that is some nice crafting lady!
Good job on the craftivism! : D
thank you both! kntgrl, i love your sign! did you ever run into problems with it?
aly, i believe that your boycotting the games does do something. i assume that you've told at least one other person, right? that's raising awareness. maybe you made them think about it differently. maybe they went home and mentioned it to their family, one of whom started thinking differently. never underestimate the little things, you know!
I have so little interest in the Olympics, I wasn't even exactly aware they had begun. I actually haven't watched any Olympics since my 7th grade boyfriend Brian Boitano stopped skating. Does that count as boycotting?
Excellent photos - thank you for being there and speaking out!
I remember your original post kind of, but I don't think I really read it. I never really thought about what the Olympics does to the area. Well no, scratch that, I did actually start to think about it when it was in China last. That is terrible. Thanks for bringing this issue to my attention.
I will definitely fight it if they ever try to bring it to Detroit.
Being from Chicago, I was kinda relieved that they didn't get 2016. But, married to canadian from Vancouver, we were in town right before and hightailed out on Friday to avoid all the craziness. Just happened to be having lunch at Quay (to avoid the craziness downtown) when they closed down the seabus.
The 2 bus rides back was not fun.
I'm not about boycotting the Olympics cause there is really some true talent from some people who deserve it like your boy, Alexandre Bilodeau. But I hear you on the money spent. Especially trucking in snow???
What I want to boycott is the American coverage of the Olympics, They make sure we watch every American athlete even if they finish in 12th. While we often don't get shown who wins 4th 5th and so on.
"craftivism"! ha! i love that!
Amy, thanks for posting this. The more the merrier! Long live dissent!
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