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DNC protesters continue march after standoff | Activist News

DNC protesters continue march after standoff

dnc protest

Associated Press
Sept. 4, 2012

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Dozens of protesters clogged streets and blocked traffic Tuesday outside the Democratic National Convention on its opening day, making for some tense moments that ultimately brought more theater than violence.

Just five blocks from Time Warner Cable Arena, where delegates are meeting this week, protesters took over an intersection for about two hours, attracting hundreds of police officers who swooped in to surround them and try to funnel them to more secure areas.

Officers took two protesters away in handcuffs. Other demonstrators got into shouting matches with delegates and cut off the primary route used by buses bringing convention attendees to the area. Still, no violence or significant damage occurred even after the protesters were eventually allowed to march into the heart of Charlotte’s central business district.

It was by far the most vigorous protest since both parties began meeting to formally nominate their presidential candidates. Republicans gathered last week in Tampa, where just two people were arrested by the end of the three-day affair.

Tuesday’s demonstration started when a half dozen Vietnam-era veterans calling for better medical care and other issues were joined in an unauthorized march by dozens of members of the Occupy movement in an unauthorized march. The Occupy group was protesting the incarceration of a soldier accused of leaking documents to WikiLeaks.

About 50 protesters disrupted traffic by sitting down in the middle of the intersection. They were quickly surrounded by heavily armed officers in riot gear. A police major using a loudspeaker urged the protesters to enter a nearby fenced-in area designated by the city for permitted convention demonstrations.

“All of America used to be a free speech zone,” said John Murdock, 37, a protester from New York who came to Charlotte after protesting last week at the Republican convention in Tampa.

Gesturing toward the many officers, he added: “This stuff is right out of George Orwell.”

Full Article Here – http://www.statesman.com/news/nation/dnc-protesters-continue-march-after-standoff-2450425.html

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