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actions & protests | corporate dominance | genetic engineering | police / legal wto sacramento

Sacramento WTO Mobilization, Day 4: In defense of food, trees, and each other

Fewer people were protesting in Sacramento on June 24 than on the previous three days, and the police were more demanding, but energy was still high, and solidarity was stronger. The first action of the day was a creative, if somewhat quixotic, convergence on the Convention Center, where WTO delegates were meeting. Protesters danced, sang, decorated the sidewalks, and briefly took the streets. Police struck brutally, splitting the crowd and squeezing it between horses and motorcycles. Eventually, people moved on to the jail to show solidarity for an imprisoned comrade. At least two were arrested en route. Food Not Bombs served at this lively rally, where the protester-to-police ration was 1-to-1+. Afterwards, the crowd was escorted back to the Welcome Center along a police-chosen route from which no one was allowed to stray. Elsewhere, black bloc kids were harrassed but still had fun. Police also seized plastic noisemakers and indymedia flyers from a ten-year old boy (with an IMC press pass) and refused to give them back.

Meanwhile, activists supporting organic, non-GE food staged a costumed educational event at a local Safeway grocery store. Their goal was to educate the population on the issues in a creative way. A dog was given a choice between two bowls of food -- one GE and one organic -- and chose the right one. Then, in nearby Davis, California, on the University campus, the spirit of Cascadia manifested itself in three activists who made a direct statement against the genetically-engineered trees studied at the facility by locking down on and beside a two story sculpture of DNA. All three were removed and arrested. The day in Sacramento ended with a fundraiser for the Mobilization.