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(en) US, RALEIGH, NC., Media*, G-8 rally brings free market

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Sun, 13 Jun 2004 23:53:35 +0200 (CEST)

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State and local police were out in force Saturday
near the state government complex, which was closed in
anticipation of any disruptive protest from the anarchists who
were in Georgia last week protesting the G-8 Summit.
What really happened, however, was a small, peaceful "free market" at
the Children's Garden near the intersection of Lane and Wilmington streets.
"Obviously, with the G-8 Summit as the backdrop, everyone had
to prepare for a full range of possibilities," said Jim Sughrue, a
spokesman with the Raleigh Police Department, which assisted the State
Capitol Police and the state Highway Patrol during the rally.

State Capitol Police Chief Scott Hunter described the police
presence as "a normal response."

"Anything we do depends on the nature of the rally," said Hunter,
who added that though the economic summit in Georgia was a
concern, he did not think rally organizers in Raleigh were "closely
connected" to the G-8 protesters.

About 200 people gathered at the garden for what was billed as
the "Really Really Free Market." Dubbed by organizers as a
festival, the event started at 10 a.m. and ended at 6 p.m.,
according to a permit issued to the group by the N.C. Dept. of

The purpose of the gathering, timed to coincide with the G-8
Summit, was to present people with "an economic alternative" to
the global corporate structure, said UNC-Chapel Hill student
Nick Shepard.

"We wanted to show that we can meet the needs of the people,"
Shepard said. "We want to show that we can work together and
build something better, right here today."

The gathering took on the trappings of an ultra-cool yard sale as
the rallygoers spread blankets on the lawn and carefully laid out
clothing, household items and buckets filled with wildflowers
across the lawn.

But there was one important stipulation: no buying or trading.
Everything was free, including the food that several homeless
men ambled over to enjoy and the live bluegrass music that
prompted a group of protesters to start square dancing after
merrily dancing around a tree.

"Everything has to be free so that no one would be excluded,"
said Liz Holloway, a Washington, D.C., native now living in
Raleigh and one of the organizers of the benign protest and

That did not stop law enforcement from being vigilant and on the
lookout for potentially unlawful activities. The bluegrass fiddler
and banjo player earnestly competed with the roar of what
rallygoers thought was a law enforcement helicopter that hovered

Authorities closed down several buildings normally open
Saturday, including the visitor's center, the Capitol and the
Governor's Mansion.

"The decision to close the buildings was the decision of each
building coordinator," Hunter said.

The perceived police overkill frightened Shepard, who was one of
the free market organizers. He was also among the participants
who complained about being followed by law enforcement
snapping their pictures from unmarked vehicles.

"I showed up around here at noon, and two police offices on bikes
rode up to me and asked me why was I here," Shepard said.
"They followed me awhile, and then two men in an unmarked
white pickup truck filmed me on a camcorder. To be honest, I
was scared."

No arrests were reported as a result of the gathering, Hunter said.

"The main reason I came out was to check out the police," said
Bryan Proffitt of Raleigh, who had just returned from the G-8
Summit and described a "massive" law enforcement presence
there. "I'm getting increasingly concerned about our civil
liberties," he said. "They're not playing."

Link: http://www.ncveg.com

* From the call issued in May to the people returning from
the G8 at Georgia.
(en) US, Really, Really Free Market in Raleigh, NC June 12
"Because “free trade” is a contradiction in terms Because
no one should have to do without food, shelter, entertainment,
and community Because life should be a picnic, but it only will

What: The Really REALLY Free Market Where: Chavis Park,
505 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., Raleigh When: Noon,
Saturday, June 12"

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