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actions & protests | police / legal

May Day Orange Vests

What's with the authoritarian control freaks in the orange vests?
The first insult is getting a permit to march. We don't need a permit to march. Freedom of assembly. Period. The cops can't stop 5,000 people from taking the streets. Next year we should not apply for a permit. They're our streets. And it's May Day goddamn-it! Not a Liberal Parade Day!

But, since the organizers did get a permit, why did the idiot Orange Vests hold us up, thus dividing the march, at Red lights? Is it in the permit that we have to stop at all red lights? If so, what's the fucking point of getting a permit? And what's with these over eager morons doing the police's work for them? The point of march security should be to protect the march from the police, not act like cops. I saw three or four of these people link arms and block a sidewalk to keep people in the streets! They were actually telling people to keep off the sidewalks. One genius told me we had a permit for the streets, not the sidewalk. Incredible! These idiots actually formed lines at Red Lights, linking arms, stopping the march from going forward because the light was no longer Green. Some opposition. A real stance. The powers-that-be are shaking in their boots! Orange Vests Equals Cops. Same Fuckin' Thing! We Don't Need Them Next Year! Go patrol somewhere else. Morons!

orange vests 01.May.2010 17:26


orange vests are for May Day marches to protect a very vulnerable population: undocumented immigrants.

Orange vests provide a buffer between immigrants and police

Orange vests provide a buffer between rightwing racists and immigrants, so a scuffle doesn't break out that results in police intervention and deportation.

The traffic stops could be overkill, sure. But the general Idea is to prevent police intervention by any means necessary.

There's a time and place to get illegal 01.May.2010 17:36

Arm Chair

It seems given the theme and make up of today's events, many people cannot afford to get busted. It means a lot more to an immigrant and or working class person who is supporting a family to go to jail than most young white US citizens. And calling everyone a 'liberal' is just as ignorant as everyone else labeling 'anarchy' nothing more than property destruction by black-clad anarcho-punks.

YAORAMF 01.May.2010 18:17

Marlena Gangi guerrilla.girl.is@gmail.com

@Bakunin: Please forgive the organizers of this event. Please forgive the few who spent countless hours and time doing out reach, securing locations, printing fliers, making signs and banners and running interference to fuck and back.

Perhaps if you had given any time or energy to help organize this massive action, you would know exactly what specifics and guidelines were contained in the permits.

Yes, please forgive everyone for forgetting that you are the only person on this planet that matters! My, how absolutely derelict they are for not checking in with you before coming to any decisions on their part!

And oh yeah: YAORAMF.

Fuck Peace Cops 01.May.2010 18:35

Fuck Orange Vests

Orange vests don't give super-powers to people so that they can "defend people against police". The police don't give a shit what color of vest you are wearing and everyone knows that so stop with the nonsesne defense of this bulshit tactic. People want to defend agains thte police they are going to need a lot more than a freaking colored vest!

Orange vests are there to keep the protesters in-line with what the organizers (read vanguard) decided for all of us, pure and simple. Fuck orange vests, fuck peace cops, fuck liberal maydays and fuck the organizers.


I don't speak for anyone else here but for my part. No. I wont forgive the bullshit organizers, if you think it's so hard to do all that shit (and yes I have worked with mayday coalitions in the past, quite a few actually) then lighten your load and don't do the cops job for them (i.e. No Peace Police/Colored Vests) and most importantly STOP DEALING WITH THE COPS! Two very simple steps to make mayday a whole lot simpler on anyone that wants to organize for it. Until then, you're all bullshit!

the vests are not the problem 01.May.2010 20:07

move on (not the .org)

orange vests are the least of the problems
I seen em so what
didnt bother me in the slightest
there are much bigger fish to fry

A pig is a pig! 01.May.2010 21:26


No matter how they dress, or who they stand with, pigs are always going to be trouble.

A few thoughts 01.May.2010 23:19

an organizer

I think Indymedia is a terrible place for this discussion, so I'm going to keep it brief, and probably won't respond again.

I'm no fan of peace police myself, but I defend their use here. We consulted with various members and leaders of different immigrant groups on this, and they demanded that this thing be permitted and that we did some work to make sure that folks were not put at unnecessary risk. Of course, there are no guarantees, and we were not making assumptions about people's willingness to push things. We were trying to work to keep the cops and any counter-protestors from messing shit up. The intention was to keep folks safe, not to police the march. I think that is largely how it went down. Personally, I'd rather have orange vests running shit than cops, but I dislike being told what to do by any authority figure, especailly when it makes no sense. And I too saw some overzealous volunteers stopping the march for traffic unnecessarily. I think that was a mistake, and I intend to address it.

Let me repeat: I agree that some orange-vest wearing security folks were being overly aggressive in policing the march. That was not part of the plan, and I will address it with other organizers.

No one is saying that folks can't organize unpermitted marches or other actions, I wish more people would. But this one was permitted and "family-friendly" and I think it needed to be that way. I'm glad that over 5,000 folks--immigrant families, black bloc anarchists, labor unions, police brutality activists, etc. came together in the streets today, even if it was not the most militant protest ever. We need a diversity of tactics.

wanna be cops 04.May.2010 10:08


I experienced these weird self appointed peace police freaks at protests in Seattle too. Yuck. Really really obnoxious.

Not everyone has to be in the same march 04.May.2010 13:01

past MayDay march organizer


As someone who helped organize the (unpermitted) 2001 march and who got arrested at the (permitted) 2000 march, it seems to me that if you don't want to march in a permitted march with internal peacekeepers, nobody is forcing you to. You can organize your own march. If you decide to join the march that someone else organized, you might consider thanking them for their efforts and keeping any criticism helpful and constructive.