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More Adventures Amongst the Idiot Left

I do not understand people who join protests and yet have no understanding of what "solidarity" means - even though they sometimes chant it really loud and sing it in songs. So the award for "Best Show of Pseudo-Solidarity" goes to fifty per cent of the bikers in the G20 Bike Rally yesterday who demonstrated this quality very well.

Here's a clip of them. Look at how they cheer and ride!

At the Jail Solidarity rally that started at 10 AM, was broken up by cops at around noon, and then reassembled sometime before 1 PM, a bunch of us were waiting to show solidarity for those friends/comrades/fellow travellers who were being kept in the makeshift prison of Toronto Film Studios. Sometime after they started letting people out [I'm guessing this was around 3:30 or 4:00], the Bike Rally arrived.

At first, those of us whose numbers were small and who had been there for hours were excited. Hey look: hundreds of bikers coming down the street chanting "solidarity" and "let them go". Hundreds of bikers joining us, sitting down, and then taking the intersection. You can see by the above video, and how excited these bikers were (or seemed to be) to get out and confront the G20, why we would feel relieved at their arrival. Even though I can't stand shouting the slogan "peaceful protest," in this case I was still elated. More elated, however, when we all started shouting to the assembled riot cops: "We will leave if they come with us."

And that's where the solidarity ended. Some woman none of us had seen until about twenty minutes before the bikers arrived decided that she was the official spokesperson for the prisoners and told us that the prisoners wanted us to disperse and that we were preventing their release. Although she had no connection with the legal team, had no comrades behind bars, and no one could speak for her, half of the bikers were convinced by her police logic.

Here are the justifications for the award:

1) Some guy who was yelling the loudest slogans and getting confrontational with cops was one of the first to argue for leaving. "Come on guys, let's ride!" was what he said. And when one of my friends tried to convince him to stay his stunning argument was this: "We could have held this intersection all day!" And her reply was, obviously, to point out that we needed it held now. Apparently he didn't understand the logic and was under the impression that solidarity meant joining protests, fucking them up, and then taking off. Thanks hipster-punk-rawk biker dude.

2) Several of the leaving bikers, when criticized, argued that we were promoting "in-fighting" - whatever that means. Since when is political criticism "in-fighting"? So you come to a protest, cause the riot cops to come out, and then abandon the thirty or so people who were there before after you've escalated things. Hell, I'm all for escalation but you can't just run off and leave people to face the cops if you're part of an action. And even when one of my friends pointed this out, some guy with a wicked hipster beard replied that we were starting fights and promoting in-fighting. So when someone breaks solidarity it's not in-fighting and when someone complains it is... Furthermore, you have to be IN something to be in-fighting. The folks yelling about this "in-fighting" were people I've never seen before and who probably, because of the way they reacted to the cops, have never participated in any significant protest or rally. Some of them actually had the gall to tell us: today is not like yesterday when things got violent, tut tut.

3) They chose to believe some random woman who we kept calling out. I doubt this woman was a police agent, but if she didn't exist they would have to invent her. She left in a huff when she was called out but, by then, half of the bikers had peddled off to continue their "oh-so-radical" cop approved bike ride through the city. (Well, at least the folks who stayed got to see that she was full of shit: as soon as she left, they started releasing prisoners in a steady stream.)

Sorry Bike Rally bikers who loudly argued for solidarity and then bailed when you were realized, for probably the first time in your life, what solidarity actually means. Next time please stay with your Critical Mass, or whatever other liberalish crap you imagine to be radical. And this isn't "in-fighting" because, when it comes down to it, you're not my comrades.