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(en) US, Lawrence, Media, Anarchists Protest Giuliani Receiving Dole Prize for Leadership

From Dan Clore <clore@columbia-center.org>
Date Tue, 22 Jul 2003 16:40:07 +0200 (CEST)

A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E

Protest against dinner 'elitists' results in scuffles, arrests
Angered by "the elitists" attending a $500-a-plate dinner
Monday to see former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani
receive an award, Lawrence anarchists took their protest
into the streets and clashed with police.
A total of 16 protesters were arrested during scuffles with
Lawrence Police near the driveway to the Lawrence Holidome, 200 McDonald Drive.
Charges included disorderly conduct, interfering with a
police officer and concealing a weapon -- a wrist rocket
that was never used, Lt. Dan Affalter said.

The protesters, many wearing bandanas that covered their
faces, shouted insults at motorists as their cars pulled
into the Holidome driveway.

"What's for dinner tonight?" a protester shouted.

"It better be a gold-plated dinner," another responded.

The dinner was in conjunction with this week's dedication of
the Dole Institute of Politics on the campus of Kansas
University. During the dinner, Giuliani received the Dole
Spirit of Leadership Award.

Earlier, about 3 p.m., nearly 60 protesters, mostly
self-proclaimed anarchists, met at the gazebo in Centennial
Park near Sixth Street and Rockledge Drive.

A man identifying himself only as "Chubby" decried Giuliani,
Dole and those attending the dinner as elitists who were
allowing children to starve and workers to lose their jobs.

"We do not want you in our town," Chubby yelled. "We do not
want you on our planet."

He and others also said they were protesting government cuts
to social services, which were putting an additional burden
on people already hurting because of the poor economy.

"We can no longer afford not to do anything," Chubby said.

He was one of the first three people arrested during the
scuffles with police near the Holidome.

The protesters tied up traffic as they marched from the park
north on Rockledge Drive and McDonald Drive. They carried
what appeared to be orange road construction barrels cut in
half to be used as shields and were bearing protest signs.

Others carried large boxes filled with paper trash. On the
front of the boxes were pictures of Dole, Giuliani,
President Bush and Dole Institute director Richard Norton
Smith. The word "tyrant" was scribbled over the photos.

Just south of the Holidome, the group was met in the middle
of the road by Police Chief Ron Olin, while about a dozen
police officers stood nearby in the driveway.

During an interview later, Olin said he offered the group a
chance to protest along the east side of the street near the
Holidome where they could still be seen. Twice the group
walked around him, and officers moved in to stop them at the

"The decision was made at that point to stop them right here
-- that we could not block the Holidome," Olin said.

Olin declined to say whether Holidome management asked that
the group be kept off the property, saying he would not
discuss security arrangements.

At the time of the first scuffle, however, a man in a dark
suit who was standing near police officers was heard to
shout that the group needed to be "stopped now."

Protesters later gathered on the west side of McDonald Drive
in front of the Kansas National Guard Armory, across from
the driveway.

Later clashes occurred when the protesters put up their
orange shields and tried to move across the street, when a
smoke bomb was tossed at police and when a water bottle was

Protesters also repeatedly chanted "This is what a police
state looks like."

Protesters blamed police for reacting with more force than
necessary. So did some onlookers. A few members of the
Lawrence Coalition for Peace and Justice accompanied the
marchers and stood by to monitor and document police

"They're doing their job protecting the Holidome property,
but it was much more force than necessary," said a woman who
declined to give her name.

One of the protesters, Ralph Earles, 61, who held a sign
that read, "No $ for War," said he thought police tried to
arrest some of the more vocal protesters as an effort to
discourage the rest.

"I know some of the people they picked out were involved in
getting people to come speak up," Earles said.

"We were very restrained," Olin said of police efforts.

Earlier this year during protests against the war with Iraq,
anarchists moved onto streets blocking traffic for several
minutes in downtown Lawrence. Police in those cases stood by
and redirected traffic.

Monday night's incident was different, Affalter said.

"It was really becoming a hazard to the people, motorists
(were) becoming upset," Affalter said. "For everybody's
safety, we needed to open that route."

Later Monday night, the anarchists regrouped outside the
Douglas County Jail to demand the release of their comrades.

Protesters with other groups gathered nearby, including
three women dressed as Rosie the Riveter who carried
"support the troops" signs.

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