Curious to see what was afoot, I found a website where the people protesting the G-20 are organizing. Action Framework|Pittsburgh G20 Resistance has notices on what is planned.
I got an email from someone who was supposed to have had experience at another G-20 Conference. That email said to expect them to start cars on fire inside the tunnels, and to set off stink bombs inside buildings. The email said, "They will throw bricks through windows, explode stink bombs or tear gas in grocery stores and block streets - mostly at intersections all over Pittsburgh, not just downtown." The email listed "targets" of:
- Mostly corporate owned companies
Starbucks (all over Pittsburgh)
- Giant Eagle (all over Pittsburgh)
- Trader Joe's (in East Liberty)
- Gap (Shadyside, Ross Park Mall, etc.)
- Victoria's Secret (same as above)
- Basically all of Walnut Street which is already starting to board up storefronts
The email didn't say why, it just listed stuff.
On the website where the resistance is organizing, it listed what sounds like peaceful protests and even says to respect the people and their neighborhoods by not blocking driveways, doorways, etc. They also say not to litter. It will be interesting to see if their people follow their own rules.
Here are a few of the things they have planned:
Thursday, September 24, will feature a People's Uprising, a mass march to disrupt the G-20 summit. We'll be starting at Arsenal Park at 2:30 pm in Lawrenceville, a vibrant working class community in the city, and marching to the G-20 summit downtown. Our theme is "Power from Below, Not Impositions from Above." Our only permit is our feet and voices. The G-20 is in the house, throwing a party. Let's crash it.
Friday, September 25, we'll be working to undermine the G-20 summit by attacking their power, making connections to the local manifestations of their neoliberal agenda. The folks that gather in the convention center represent large governments that draw their power from collusion with powerful corporations, governments that draw their wealth from resource extraction and destruction to our world, and governments that maintain their forces through the direct violence of police forces and militaries. Without these structural supports, their power will disintegrate. The G-20 is in a house of cards: let's shake the table.
The action working group of the Pittsburgh G-20 Resistance Project has drawn up a list of 100 potential targets, and many groups will be claiming a destination somewhere in the city. We call for these coordinated actions to end at 11:30 am in which we will demonstrate: we do not need to be together physically to be together in struggle.
Not sure I like the sound of some of that. More disturbing is the map of potential protest sites. Lots of Starbucks, some clothing and grocery stores, some police stations (!! that should be interesting), and a fair number of these are between where I live and where I work. Even CMU is listed (Robotics Institute). I have my doubts about being able to get into work on Friday (we've been given Thursday off).