30 Busted At Rally To Smoke Pot

Discussion in 'Marijuana News' started by Superjoint, May 8, 2001.

  1. By Greg Gittrich and Don Singleton
    Source: New York Daily News

    Thirty demonstrators were arrested yesterday afternoon when a Manhattan marijuana march ended in violent clashes between protesters and cops. Police hit at least a dozen people with pepper spray after marchers ran through crowded Battery Park pointing out undercover officers arresting participants for smoking pot.
    "No narcs in the park!" they chanted as they identified the narcotics cops. Other chants included "41 shots!" - a reference to the police slaying of unarmed African immigrant Amadou Diallo.

    The annual pot parade, this time called "Cures Not Wars - 2001 The Space Odyssey," began forming at 11 a.m. at Washington Square Park. At 1 p.m., marchers proceeded to Broadway and then headed south toward their intended destinations - City Hall Park and Battery Park.

    Organizers estimated the crowd at 5,000; police say 1,000.

    The protesters walked south, filling five solid blocks, chanting, "We smoke pot, and we like it a lot," and carrying placards that read "Free the Herb," "Emancipate Cannibis" and "No Ganja, No Peace."

    Many argued for the legalization of medical use of marijuana; others supported legalized recreational use of the drug.

    The marchers, mostly young and white, were led by a statuesque woman dubbed Medical Marijuana Barbie, who wore fluorescent pink hair and a pink patterned dress.

    "Marijuana is peaceful," said Marcus Josepin, 18, of Kearny, N.J. "You never see a crackhead march or a heroin user march."

    Organizers carried a piñata shaped like Mayor Giuliani's head that was filled with fake joints.

    By 3 p.m., the marchers reached Battery Park, where they began to light up real joints.

    Plainclothes cops arrested smokers in twos and threes, placed them in plastic handcuffs, photographed and herded them into waiting vans.

    At 4:10 p.m., four plainclothes officers were carrying an arrested man toward an area where several police vans were parked, and the man's loud protests and the way the cops were carrying him - facedown, his face bouncing on the ground - caused scores of people to come running.

    A few minutes later, another officer tripped as he was removing a man. A uniformed officer rushed in to help the fallen cop to his feet, and when a crowd gathered around him, a lieutenant began spraying the protesters with pepper spray.

    The demonstrators disbanded shortly after 6 p.m., the time their rally permit expired.

    Joint Custody: Police nabbed over 30 pot smokers as yesterday's demonstration turned violent.

    Source: New York Daily News (NY)
    Author: Greg Gittrich and Don Singleton, Daily News Staff Writers
    Published: May 6, 2001
    Copyright: 2001 Daily News, L.P.
    Contact: voicers@edit.nydailynews.com
    Website: http://www.nydailynews.com/

    Related Article & Web Site:

    2001: The Space Odyssey http://www.2001thespaceodyssey.com/

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