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Thousands Defy French Ban on Public Protest - Demand Liberté and Action at COP21


Thousands Defy French Ban on Public Protest - Demand Liberté and Action at COP21

Joe Solomon

The day began at dawn, as Avaaz and their early-bird volunteers laid out a couple thousand pair of shoes in the Place de la République, in the shadow of the statue of Marianne.


I looked at NY Times, WA Post for an article on the climate march around the world. Couldn’t find it featured. Yesterday the Guardian had a live feed of events but couldn’t find it at the top. Had to go to the environment tab and finally found an article posted on Australia march but that was 12 hours ahead of EST so probably written at start of event. But did get notice from the ACORN spin off Avaaz.org which now has 42 million global members. Here is their tweet

Avaaz ‏@Avaaz 6h6 hours ago
We’ve just seen the biggest #ClimateMarch in history with 720,000 people marching in 175 countries. Thanks everyone!


I expect little or no coverage in most of the corporate press. The shoes were a brilliant idea and admire the hope and determined resistance of spontaneous public gatherings, demonstrations and marches. It would be great if the leaders could be surrounded and held captive until a verifiable agreement that actually mattered was agreed upon.

As for the “black bloc,” they are provocateurs and cause more trouble empowering government and providing justifications for attacks on protesters. If anything will be covered in our press, it will be this negative image and the paltry achievements of President.


Although I agree that the protestors that throw rocks, etc., are generally not helpful, I understand their frustration. It is not fair to ban environmental activists and not other large gatherings. And as others have noted, the MTM prefers to ignore us and our sick Gaia.

To ensure public awareness, we need large numbers AND sometimes peaceful, civil disobedience. As you infer, we get many more sympathizers if we are seen as the ones being bullied by the police, not when we are seen as trying to hurt them.


My spirit is with the brave protesters, after all what is the meaning of a protest if one simply obeys the authorities one is protesting against? If people in Paris don’t protest it will send a message to the tyrants that we are here to party, we are really not genuinely concerned about climate change.


Tune into Democracynow.org to view events in Paris. Amy Goodman is there and has interviewed some fascinating individuals.