Rachel and her friend Rabbit Strike (whom I hadn’t come across before, but will certainly be reading in future) have been to their local police station to hand in, separately, their applications to demonstrate for the final mass lone demonstration of 2006. It’s one of the frustrations of not living in London any more that I can’t join this demonstration or the illegal carol service later in the day.
In their attempts peacefully to demonstrate, they find themselves stuck in
an interminable limbo of bureaucratic form-filling and waiting endlessly to be seen, heard, validated by an unsympathetic, chaotic State Machine
along with others trying to report crimes, sign on as part of bail requirements, reclaim property and so on. Their experiences were infuriating but darkly comic to read about. The main point, it seems to me, isn’t that you have to go through this time-wasting nonsense to demonstrate, bad though that it, but that so many people are put through it every day.
tag: Civil Liberties, Permission to Demonstrate, Lone Mass Demonstration, Parliament