On November 16th I attended the Queens College conference discussing the Pittsburgh Protests at the G20 convention on September 24th and 25th. The riots broke out into something I have never seen or even heard of before. Honestly, I went to the conference hoping to gain some extra credit points in my English class; however, I left with a sense of understanding for how corrupt our own government polices could be and really wanting to know more. Later, I spent hours watching you tube videos and reading more and more about the G20 riots in Pittsburgh.
The police took rather unnecessary harsh action against these protestors and not only shut down roads and restricted their freedom of speech but also used LRAD sonic guns to break up the crowds. These sonic guns had only been formerly used in Iraq against crowds of terrorists. The police used harmful, disrupting tactics to prove that they are the ones in charge and unnecessarily hurt many innocent people along the side-roads. It is reasonable to have some police located at a sight of a protest just to be there for the safety of the people if a fight breaks out, but the police action seen at these Pittsburgh Protests is disgusting. Their main goal was to show that the police authority and the government have more power over regular citizens, however, doesn’t our country stand for something else? Where do we see the police abiding by the amendments during this incident?
I was also very angered to see that the police authorities took such harsh treatment against Eliott Madison, just because he was “twittering” the location of the police to the protesters from his hotel room throughout the rally. He was arrested and his apartment was searched by an FBI counter-terrorism unit. This infers that he was suspected to be a type of ‘terrorist’- since an FBI counter-terrorism unit raided his NY apartment. This angers me most because Eliott Madison is just a normal citizen, using his freedom rights, whereas the police, in this case, were the ones acting more like terrorist with their SWAT-like units and hazardous dispersing tactics such as sonic weapons, long range acoustic devices and tear gas.