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Gathering Together to Smash the State: An Analysis of Rhetorical Artifacts from the 2002 North American Anarchist Gathering
Unformatted Document Text:  Gathering 2 Gathering Together to Smash the State: An Analysis of Rhetorical Artifacts from the 2002 North American Anarchist Gathering ‘These demonstrators, particularly those who were bent on violence and destruction, made it difficult for us,’ Police Chief Norm Stamper said. ‘It was a calculated strategy of major, active and threatening disturbances.’ Streets in downtown Seattle were littered with glass and other debris after activists smashed storefront windows, sprayed graffiti, slashed police car tires and set trashcan containers on fire to vent their anger at a meeting of the 135-member WTO. (AP news reported on CNN.com) The confluence of people on the streets was nothing short of stunning. The international nature of the crowd—farmers from South America, union groups from Canada, activists from India, Africa, Asia, and Europe, indigenous peoples from the Northwest and around the world—was a rising tide of inspiration. There were moms with kids, students with stamina, and labor leaders with big bellies. It was a great ruckus, a carnival of cause. It had all the grace and grandeur of a global family reunion—complete with teenagers and turtles, misfits and ministers. It was a parade, and everybody came. (Thomas, 2000, p. 12) There are essentially two sides to the story of the WTO protests in Seattle 1999: the media “mainstream” side of the story that involves violent rioters destroying property and clashing with police, and the activist/protester side of the story that is about diverse voices coming together to peacefully oppose the tide of corporate globalization. “The discrepancy between being in the experience and then seeing it portrayed was like cuddling up with your teddy bear and waking up with a crocodile in your bed” (Thomas, 2000, p. 12). Visions of trashcans burning and masked rioters marauding on the one side versus tales of people dressed as turtles dancing in the street for social justice on the other. It is obvious that this event had a major impact on all sides of the argument surrounding globalization. As democratic globalization protests have increased pursuing the world economic summits around the world the summits

Authors: Atkinson, Joshua.
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Gathering 2
Gathering Together to Smash the State: An Analysis of Rhetorical Artifacts from the 2002 North
American Anarchist Gathering
‘These demonstrators, particularly those who were bent on violence and destruction,
made it difficult for us,’ Police Chief Norm Stamper said. ‘It was a calculated strategy of
major, active and threatening disturbances.’ Streets in downtown Seattle were littered
with glass and other debris after activists smashed storefront windows, sprayed graffiti,
slashed police car tires and set trashcan containers on fire to vent their anger at a meeting
of the 135-member WTO. (AP news reported on CNN.com)

The confluence of people on the streets was nothing short of stunning. The international
nature of the crowd—farmers from South America, union groups from Canada, activists
from India, Africa, Asia, and Europe, indigenous peoples from the Northwest and around
the world—was a rising tide of inspiration. There were moms with kids, students with
stamina, and labor leaders with big bellies. It was a great ruckus, a carnival of cause. It
had all the grace and grandeur of a global family reunion—complete with teenagers and
turtles, misfits and ministers. It was a parade, and everybody came. (Thomas, 2000, p.
12)
There are essentially two sides to the story of the WTO protests in Seattle 1999: the
media “mainstream” side of the story that involves violent rioters destroying property and
clashing with police, and the activist/protester side of the story that is about diverse voices
coming together to peacefully oppose the tide of corporate globalization. “The discrepancy
between being in the experience and then seeing it portrayed was like cuddling up with your
teddy bear and waking up with a crocodile in your bed” (Thomas, 2000, p. 12). Visions of
trashcans burning and masked rioters marauding on the one side versus tales of people dressed as
turtles dancing in the street for social justice on the other. It is obvious that this event had a major
impact on all sides of the argument surrounding globalization. As democratic globalization
protests have increased pursuing the world economic summits around the world the summits


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