Tuesday, March 29, 2011

What really happened in Trafalgar Square

So one of the things I heard about the anti cuts protest in London was that the protesters staged a sit in in "the Queens grocers."
"Why would they do that" I thought. I'm not super keen on their being a royal family, but what's the point in that?
Well it seems that Fornum and Mason may be dodging tax to the tune of £40 million.
I don't know the full story, something about them not having to pay because they're so charitable? They give millions to schools, which is nice. £25 million to Oxford University for a start, because well we all know Oxford needs the cash and there's a £900000 donation to the Tories. No wait. That's not charitable. it's all a bit of a grey area. I don't really know what I'm talking about here so don't quote me. Have a look around the net yourself.

Anyway, all I heard from the media. Radio, TV and news papers was that there was an anti cuts protest in London and they smashed up the place.

All the reports though seemed to be pretty much The police said this, the police said that.
The only reporter who seemed to actually be there, actually in there was Laurie Penny from the New Statesman click those last words there or any of the cartoons to read the full article.

Here's some cartoons with clips from the article...

"We're fucked," says the young man in the hoodie, staring out through the police cordon of Trafalgar Square, towards parliament. "Who's going to listen to us now?"

Now, night is falling on the Trafalgar kettle, and the square stinks of cordite, emptied kidneys and anxiety. We've been here for three hours, and it's freezing; we burn placards and share cigarettes to maintain an illusion of warmth.

Commander Bob Broadhurst, who was in charge of the Metropolitan Police operation on the day, later states that the clashes in Trafalgar square began because "for some reason one of [the protestors] made an attack on the Olympic clock." That is not what happened. Instead, I witness the attempted snatch arrest of a 23 year-old man who they suspect of damaging the shop front of a major chain bank earlier in the day.

A clear-eyed young man called Martin throws himself between the kids and the cops, his hands raised, telling us all to calm down, stand firm,stop throwing things and link arms; the police grab him.

When UK Uncut's well-publicised secret occupation plan kicks into action at 3.30pm, the numbers and the energy quickly become overwhelming. As we follow the high-profile direct action group's red umbrella down Regent Street, we learn that the target is Fortnum and Mason's - the "Royal grocer's", as the news are now insisting on calling it, as though the stunt were a yobbish personal assault on the Queen's marmalade. The crowd is too big to stop, and protesters stream into the store, rushing past the police who are too late to barricade the doors.


Refined middle-aged couples who had been having quiet cream teas in Fortnum's downstairs restaurant stare blinkingly at the occupiers, who are organising themselves into a non-hierarchial consensus-building team. "I oppose the cuts, I'm a socialist, but I think this type of thing is too much," says property manager Kat, 32. "There are old ladies upstairs. And I just came in to buy some fresh marshmallows, and now I can't."

Back on the column, a boy in a black hoodie and facerag hollers through his hands to his friends, who have linked arms in front of the police line. "This is what they want!" he yells, pointing at the Houses of Parliament. "They want us to fight each other. They want us to fight each other!

“They're laughing all the way to the bank!"



Notes: I don't know if the 23 year-old man who they suspect of damaging the shop front of a major chain bank earlier in the day even had an Ipod, and I screwed up the Fortnum and Mason thing where the dude is complaining about marshmallows, That should have been a woman.

riots cartoon, protest cartoon, tax dodging cartoon

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some sort of artist or something. with problems and issues. I draw stuff
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