“WASHINGTON — Police arrested 31 people on Sunday night and tore down a barnlike building Occupy D.C. protesters began to erect that morning in a park two blocks from the White House where they have been camping out.”
Pure camp, isn’t it?
“The episode, in which police officers plucked some protesters from the building’s rafters with a cherry picker or coaxed them to jump off it onto an inflated cushion, lasted into the evening. “
When you’ve got the right picker life is just a bowl of cherries.
“Ann Wilcox, an observer from the National Lawyers Guild who was in touch with both sides, said that the police had made clear in advance that protesters in and around the structure would be arrested.
As the police worked, the protesters chanted their defiance: “We are stronger than your trucks and your horses and your riot gear and your orders.” “
“Despite some disputes and a few confrontations, the Occupy D.C. protesters have had a relatively smooth relationship with the police, without the clashes that have occurred in other cities when officers have moved in to carry out mass evictions. But the erection of the structure and the police response to it appeared likely to escalate tensions. Several protesters said the police had moved in a little after noon, using horses to force people back.
As the standoff continued, a few of the protesters on the roof jumped down, but others sat tight for hours, according to witnesses and the Twitter stream of @Occupy_DC. By the end of the evening, 31 people had been arrested, according to a spokesman for the United States Park Police: 15 for crossing a police line and 16 for disobeying a lawful order after the structure was declared unsafe, the spokesman said. Of those, one was charged with indecent exposure, among other things, for urinating while atop the structure.”
So tasteful of the Times not to provide a pucture of that alleged event.
“One of the protesters landed with a flamboyant somersault on the inflated mattress. “
“Flamboyant” = Gay. Right?
“He was arrested as onlookers cheered as if he were a gymnast who had just stuck a landing.”
“A few more protesters were then removed one at a time in the cherry picker basket. With the removal of the last protester, the occupation of the structure came to an end around 8:30 p.m. Within an hour of the last arrest, the structure was being hauled away in pieces. The police did hand back to the protesters a flag that they had flown from the peak of the roof. “
“United States Park Police officers in helmets and on horseback had surrounded the two-story structure in McPherson Square throughout the afternoon, pushing back protesters and using yellow tape to cordon off the area. The rest of the occupation camp was not disturbed.
One protester, standing on a park bench on a chilly but sunny afternoon to watch while holding a handwritten sign that said “People not profits,” said the police had pulled several people out of the half-built structure and arrested them. A Park Police spokesman did not return a phone call or e-mail. “
I’m sure they’ll correct that oversight ASAP.
“Over all, the scene was orderly, and both sides seemed relaxed. “
Few things are as relaxing as the quashing of dissent.
“The man standing on the bench, who declined to give his name, said the structure had been put up overnight and was intended to be a general meeting space that would provide some protection from the winds. It was placed in a part of the park that had been left empty for the protesters’ meetings, known as general assemblies.
The structure, a sturdy, well-squared frame of boards and planks with the first few sheets of siding in place, appeared to have been carefully designed and deftly, if hurriedly, built. Occupy D.C. issued a statement saying the construction had been planned for a month. “The modular structure was designed by professionals ‘to code,’ ” the statement said. “It meets all health and safety requirements and is fully accessible. It is nonpermanent, has no foundations and is not tethered to the ground” “
Well the “barn” may be gone, but the dance goes on. Take it away kids!