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Protests in the dark…

July 27, 2014

I watch as a protest pops up outside the CTV building on Queen West. It was mostly muslim women (and a few men) who were protesting the lack of media coverage concerning the Burmese regime’s killing of minority groups and Muslims.

I am amazed at the total and utter indifference the passing people have, to this and to most protests in the city [Toronto]. Just another inconvenience in getting from A to B. The police officers who are required to accompany “official” protests are always bored to the point of looking catatonic.

I like how two women, who are looking at expensive shoes in the store window next door to me, turn for a moment to look at the protesters before going back to discussing the season’s new line up of John Flueuogs.

The protest lasts long enough for me to count the protesters. 56. Standing side-by-side, arm-in-arm, they barely stretch the length of the Marilyn Denis facade that overlooks the street.

I kick myself for not having my camera. I like Marilyn’s big smiling face looking down over the protesting women dressed in the their black hijabs. A woman speaks into a bullhorn about her ‘disappeared’ husband, while Marilyn’s big happy face shills the latest in gluten-free home design and practical fall fashions for the working woman.

A cop stands off to the side , watching as two women go by in micro-minis, with legs that come up to my eyeballs. The cop absently scratches his ass and tells one of the protesters to get off the street and back up on to the sidewalk.

And then like a flock of birds that somehow decide en masse to suddenly alight from a tree, the protesters turn and leave in the direction of City Hall.

A homeless man quickly settles into the spot the protesters have now vacated and sets up his little cardboard sign – (but all he gets is more indifference). A few people come out of the CTV entranceway and take a smoke break together.

The protesters are gone – busy people go about their business – none the wiser that the protest had ever happened.

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