5 hours ago
15/07/19 • Finally got to join @extinctionrebellion for the first time in person after following them & lurking on social media for probably about half a year. The response from people was generally a lot more positive than I expected.
Press coverage of XR is a really good example of how manipulative the media can be. The majority of the headlines I've seen have been negative-slanting variations of 'Extinction Rebellion block traffic and cause disruption', followed by heavily opinionated rants about traffic or assumptions about whether or not the protesters have jobs. The only evidence of public support or the cause & message is usually hidden in short at the end of the article.
Partly due to this, being surrounded by police felt intimidating at first. I expected more negativity from all that amplified through the media, but some police were smiling, high-fiving or having full casual conversations with protesters.
Arrests still happen as the police are ultimately there to do their job to uphold the law. But that doesn’t mean that the law is always right, and that doesn’t mean that some of the police don’t also support the cause. The system is bigger than individual policemen and women, and that is why we challenge the system and the law.
Many bystanders seemed generally curious during the moving protest, filming on their phones or accepting leaflets that we handed out. One woman even came up and asked whether she could do anything to help. She joined the crowd and helped us hand out more leaflets. A few drivers or passers-by recognised XR, shouted the name, beeped or cheered us on. So much so that ‘get a life’ taxi drivers or judgemental onlookers didn’t make a dent. I don’t know yet how today went and how the rest of the week will go, but London felt like a success, yesterday, and that’s a start. #extinctionrebellion #climateemergency #summeruprising
🤠 When was justice ever achieved without originating as a group of protesters being scowled at by the press for forcing the government to accept and act on the truth? 🤠