A short interview with a protester at Occupy Toronto who has chained himself to the library yurt (winter tent) in St James Park. Nov. 21, 2011. Occupy Toronto was ordered evicted earlier in the day, after a judge rejected the premise that the rights of the protesters were protected by Canada's Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
Related rabble.ca story:
Following a court decision on Monday, Nov. 21, 2011, police began securing eviction notices at the Occupy Toronto campsite in St. James Park. The notices were written on the letterhead of the church which owns the property.
The protesters have remained on the site for five weeks. Some packed to leave and comply with the order, while others have attempted to make barricades more secure.
Occupation is an autonomous tactic that seeks to draw attention to critical social issues. Occupation is just one tactic among many others. It exists because many of us believe that political engagement should not be limited to voting and signing petitions. Many of us believe that Canada's archaic political institutions have become disconnected from reality and corrupted by corporate influence, and that these institutions have intentionally stifled and limited public involvement in the decision making processes that govern our society. Perhaps they were disconnected from the start.
The Occupy movements have largely become dramas revolving around the excellent question posed by The Clash: Should I stay or should I go? It's become a story about a place. Some, like London (Ontario) are gone. Others, like London (England) are on notice. Occupy Wall St. is gone but it's back, in a different form. We'll know about Occupy Toronto, apparently, tomorrow. But it's possible that this is the wrong question. Let me offer another view based on a recent visit to Madrid.