Occupy Bloomington, May Day, early morning action: Dancin’ with the Police

Remember, I said there would be at least one “surprise” today? Well it happened. And now I can say what it was. . .

My friend, and local occupier, Aaron, visited me yesterday evening. Here he is, late this morning, leaning against one of the newly installed “brains” in various spots around Bloomington. (22 of them, plexiglass, from the same mold, and all painted/decorated differently by different groups; this public art project the “brain child” (sic) of local personage, Jill Bolte Taylor, of My Stroke of Insight fame on TED).

Pup Shadow and I went downtown about 10:30 this morning, to the agreed upon spot. Just as I was approaching it, I saw Aaron, in his truck, waving madly, with what looked like a huge, rolled-up tarp in the back. He was excited, said it was over and “it went great”!

Told me to go to another spot, between 4th and 5th, on the B-Line trail, where he could tell me what happened.

The plan they had set in motion yesterday was this: 20 occupiers would meet at 7 am at the spot where the big old tent from the Occupy Camp of last fall had been set up. They would attempt to lift the tent up and carry it a block or so to a new space, and place it there, as an instant foundation, and rallying point, for what they hoped to be a new Occupy Camp.

Here’s where they found it.

And it worked! About 20 of them picked that damn tent up and moved it. To here:

Oops. They got the tent up. Now what?

But not before at least an equal number of policemen arrived. And told them they could protest all they wanted, but they couldn’t set up any tents. In other words, couldn’t have another Occupy Camp. To buttress their position, one of them carried what Aaron told me was a pepper-spray gun.

And what kind of a weapon is that?

Aaron decided to make and display a sign. “Help! Being Oppressed” (by the scary weapon).

Aaron said that then the policemen cut the ropes to the tent.

The policemen folded the tent, and rolled it up. Did a pretty good job, too, I’d say, judging by its neatly compacted form in the back of Aaron’s truck.

At this point the occupiers decided to sit on the tent and sing songs to the policemen. Great shots, eh?
BTW: all these great photos of the tent action are those of Jeremy, from the local Herald-Times.

The policemen just stood around.

Havin’ fun!

Then the police left. And Aaron got in his truck, and saw me.

About a half hour later, Shadow and I walked to the designated spot, where a “Really Really Free Market” was starting out, with food later, and movies at the library in the afternoon, and a walk from the IU Sample Gates at 5 p.m., and a teach-in, and on and on. See posters I posted yesterday.

I got on their fb page, and got these two shots, of erecting the May Day flag on the B-Line.

Hoisting the flag on the B-Line trail. (Note the city-owned permanent rain shelter.)

The flag flies free . . .

Then another thunderstorm blew in and I ran back to my car.

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