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Extinction Rebellion protest chalks up a success with passers-by

31 May, 2019

Protest songs in Holloway Road: the public were ‘supportive, friendly and fun’

• AN Extinction Rebel­lion flash protest took place at Barclays Bank’s Holloway Road branch on Saturday. The public reaction was supportive, friendly and fun.

The student protesters turned up half an hour late, yawning and wiping sleep out of their eyes. Typical. We old farts were there, ready to shout: “What do we want? I don’t know. When do we want it? Well asap please.”

Eventually, six of us gathered, accompanied by a great guitarist singing traditional protest songs. Quality was the order of the day as quantity was not the aim. And over two hours 300 passers-by were smiling and participating.

More than 50 people, aged six to 60, chalked cats and trees on the pavement as well as the slogans “Go Green” and “Kick capitalism into the long grass”.

I bumped into an old Left figure I had not seen for 40 years who repeated a misinformed trope to the effect that “the Militant Tendency are behind Momentum”.

I pointed out several things: that Militant has not existed since 1992 and the old Trots were fewer than 5,000, on pain meds and past retirement age. And that the new activists were not saddled with sectarian, rhetoric-burdened bias.



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