Saturday, September 01, 2007
Critical Mass Rides from "Guantanamo-on-Hudson"...
Friday night , August 31 , 2007 Critical Mass began its regular last-Friday-of-the-month-ride at 9 pm in front of Marine and Aviation pier 57 at 15th street and the Hudson River .
The evening began earlier for CM and NYPD in Union Square Park as usual at around 7 pm. Seventy to eighty bicycles with riders assembled for what appeared to be a ride beginning from Union Square Park . NYPD was present in considerable number waiting for the evening's events to unfold as usual in the parking lot on the north side of the park .
Not much happened in USP other than a puppet show which was more-or-less shut down by NYPD . Both riders and cops waited patiently in the parking lot for more than an hour for the expected ride to begin . But CM leadership had a surprise for NYPD .
CM leadership had secreted around the word among the riders that this month's ride would not begin in Union Square Park but at Marine and Aviation pier 57 located on the Hudson river . Quietly the body of 80 or so riders , leaving USP a few at at a time only , made their way to what was known during the Republican National Convention (RNC) as "Guantanamo on the Hudson" , Marine and Aviation pier 57.
This site was chosen by the CM leadership in memory to all those who had been held in this facility after being arrested for protesting at the RNC on the infamous A31 , day of anarchy . A31 had ocurred 3 years earlier to the day on 31 Aug. 2004 .
The ride started at 9pm from pier 57 with 80 or so riders and passed through many of the places that during the RNC had been the site of major arrests of large numbers of CM riders . In several places such as Times Square and in front of St Marks in the Bowery the riders stopped and raised high above their heads their bicycles in memory to all those that had been arrested during the RNC ride .It was reported by riders that during the stop in Times Square hundreds cheered the riders .
Finally according to some riders interveiwed there were no arrests and in fact hardly any of NYPD were seen anywhere during the entire ride .
I rarely agree with The New York Times but their editoral on the Critical Mass and the NYPD working together was right on. Glad to read your report and I enjoyed the photos very much. Live vicarously through your photos and safely too...Post a Comment
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