“Summit ends without giving Chicago a black eye,” the May 22 Chicago Tribune proclaimed, but I had one. On Sunday, I was shooting in the midst of a crowd on Michigan Avenue when my camera got smashed against my face as police pushed protestors back, batons swinging. The bruises didn’t surface until 48 hours later as I drove away from Chicago. And much of the story of what happened in Chicago is surfacing after the fact too.
| Police film protester with an “Orwell Was Right”
sign in Grant Park
The overwhelming police presence on the streets was mind boggling. They were also out in force at every metro stop, waiting on line to use the bathrooms at downtown restaurants. They were everywhere, in their spanking clean uniforms, their shiny new helmets, perfect for photo ops. There were more of them on the streets than protesters, most of the time. You saw them on foot, on horses, Segways, and bicycles (one cop told me they could use some new ones), in SUVs, police cars, helicopters and city buses with LED signs that blinked “Chicago, My Kind of Town.”
My first dispatch about the NATO summit protests on the Atlantic’s web site here. It’s an overview of what I saw on the days leading up to and the first day of the summit.
|Police Disperse Crowd That refuses to leave by pushing/hitting
people with billy clubs
|Chicago Police in Shinny New Riot Gear|
|Woman at Anti NATO protest in CHicago|