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October Rebellion

Part 1 – Part 2 – Part 3 – Part 4 – Part 5

Part 2

Marching south on Wisconsin Avenue, shouting, “No justice, no peace, no pigs on our streets!”


Along Wisconsin Avenue, we inadvertently penned a non-participating vehicle in while it was trying to make a maneuver into a driveway.

Along Wisconsin Avenue, we inadvertently penned a non-participating vehicle in while it was trying to make a maneuver into a driveway.


On the way back down Wisconsin Avenue, we again went past a lot of the boarded-up storefronts.  On the way back down Wisconsin Avenue, we again went past a lot of the boarded-up storefronts.

On the way back down Wisconsin Avenue, we again went past a lot of the boarded-up storefronts.


We returned to M Street the same way we departed it - via Wisconsin Avenue, at the former Riggs Bank building.

We returned to M Street the same way we departed it – via Wisconsin Avenue, at the former Riggs Bank building.

We returned to M Street the same way we departed it - via Wisconsin Avenue, at the former Riggs Bank building.


Before leaving Wisconsin Avenue, however, one demonstrator did take a parting shot at a chain store that had not boarded up its windows like many of the other would-be targets. Thus the United Colors of Benetton took a brick via a window just to the right of its entrance, shattering the window.


The United Colors of Benetton loses a window, in one of two glass breakages that evening.  The United Colors of Benetton loses a window, in one of two glass breakages that evening.

The United Colors of Benetton loses a window, in one of two glass breakages that evening.


All the while, the march continued, as it turned east on M Street.

All the while, the march continued, as it turned east on M Street.


One could also tell that the mood at this march was tense. Any unexpected movements caused demonstrators to retreat quickly, such as when a police officer wiped out on his motorcycle due to the rain. One definitely had to be quick about their movements, as the crowd’s direction could change at any moment, and happen very quickly.

Turning back onto M Street, we headed east. As we turned onto M Street, however, the evening was soon marred by the one accident of the evening – a bystander was struck by a projectile. What happened was that a demonstrator threw a brick intending to strike a chain store, but the brick bounced off the building and struck a woman in the head on the way back down. The street medics were called over, but thankfully, the woman was able to walk away from the incident. The building that was the target of the brick was unscathed.


News image of the woman who was struck by a projectile during the Georgetown march

As seen here in this Fox 5 news image, the evening was marred when a woman was struck in the head by a projectile thrown by a demonstrator.


Continuing along M Street, while I was filming, I heard the sound of shattering glass a second time. I didn’t see it, but I heard it coming from my right, so we presume that it was a storefront on the south side of M Street that got it. I was filming a video at the time, and the sound of glass breaking shows up on the video. I noticed no broken window, however, so I cannot confirm the second target’s identity.


In the midst of the crowd’s chant of “Hey, hey, ho, ho, gentrification has got to go!” the sound of glass breaking is heard, along with reactions from other participants in the bloc to what was believed to be the breaking of a window.


At one point, the police managed to get the center of M Street, and had the demonstrators to the sides.

At one point, the police managed to get the center of M Street, and had the demonstrators to the sides.


Police order demonstrators out of the street under threat of immediate arrest.


As the march eventually stalled, demonstrators locked arms.  As the march eventually stalled, demonstrators locked arms.

As the march eventually stalled, demonstrators locked arms.


Eventually, the police decided that enough was enough. They declared the march disorderly, and ordered everyone to disperse. They indicated that they would be allowing people to leave in groups of ten, and that anyone remaining would be arrested.


Captain Jeff Herold of the MPDC laid out what was going on, and indicated which way people were to go to leave the event.

Captain Jeff Herold of the MPDC laid out what was going on, and indicated which way people were to go to leave the event.


Pan around the crowd as the march is dispersing.


Personally, I figured that enough was probably enough, and so I went out with the first group of ten. After all, our march was a huge success. We did it. We shut down Georgetown, even if only for an evening. They even diverted the Metrobus routes that go down M Street. In fact, just the mere idea of our presence as a “rowdy” bloc was enough to cause Georgetown to shut down, board up, and basically stick its head in the sand.  We shut down Georgetown before we ever put foot to pavement.  However, the locally-owned businesses knew that they were certainly not the target of the march, as no local businesses boarded up to the best of my knowledge, and a number of locally-owned bars and restaurants were in fact open for business and doing quite well that evening.

Eventually, just about everyone got out of the march unscathed, with the exception of two people who were arrested. Missy and I parted company for the evening here. More than likely, we would be seeing each other again tomorrow. A smaller black bloc re-formed east of the area that police were directing everyone to leave, and they marched in single file back to Washington Circle. Meanwhile, a lot of us took it more casually going back to Foggy Bottom. We took off our masks, and discussed things. The general consensus among this group was that with the Georgetown march, this was just the appetizer. There were more protests over the weekend to attend, and thus we didn’t want to get arrested or sprayed or physically overtaxed, because any of those could put us out of action for the remainder of the weekend. I also gave a number of people in this same group directions back to Foggy Bottom Metro, as inevitably at a demonstration, many of those from out of town aren’t familiar with where the Metro stations are, and need a little help. Even though I’ve only been living in the DC area for five months, I’ve been going up to DC long enough that I’m quite familiar with the way Washington DC is laid out.


We left Georgetown the way we came, once again passing the Lukoil station at the junction of Pennsylvania Avenue and M Street.

We left Georgetown the way we came, once again passing the Lukoil station at the junction of Pennsylvania Avenue and M Street.


The black bloc that reorganized east of the police lines marched southeast along Pennsylvania Avenue in more or less single file.

The black bloc that reorganized east of the police lines marched southeast along Pennsylvania Avenue in more or less single file.


I eventually walked back to the Metro station with a woman who turned out to be a volunteer with ANSWER. We discussed ANSWER’s poor reputation among the anti-war and activist community, the way ANSWER operates, and also experiences at various protests. After all, I’ve been to just about every big anti-war event in DC in the last few years, and with her being affiliated with ANSWER, we’ve been to some of the same marches.

At Foggy Bottom station, we saw a strange sight – what was everyone doing congregated around the station entrance? Turns out they were just kind of hanging out for a bit before going in. Eventually, after figuring this out, we went in, and headed to the platform. There, we parted company, as she was traveling on the Blue Line towards Franconia-Springfield, while I was going back to Glenmont, and thus taking Blue to Largo or Orange to New Carrollton, in order to transfer to my Red Line train at Metro Center.


The demonstration ended at Foggy Bottom Metro, where everyone congregated before leaving.

The demonstration ended at Foggy Bottom Metro, where everyone congregated before leaving.

The demonstration ended at Foggy Bottom Metro, where everyone congregated before leaving.


And on the platform, I saw something that made me all warm and fuzzy inside – seeing the whole platform filled with the whole Georgetown march crowd, heading back to St. Stephen’s Church – the convergence center for this weekend. Most of them would be transferring to the Green Line at L’Enfant Plaza.


The platform at Foggy Bottom Metro, filled with anarchists...  The platform at Foggy Bottom Metro, filled with anarchists...

The platform at Foggy Bottom Metro, filled with anarchists…

The platform at Foggy Bottom Metro, filled with anarchists...  The platform at Foggy Bottom Metro, filled with anarchists...


We all eventually piled onto a Blue Line train to Largo, and I got on CAF 5126 with a number of others. At Metro Center, I wished everyone a good night, and that I would see them tomorrow.


Riding back from the march on CAF 5126.

Riding back from the march on CAF 5126.


CAF 5126, part of a train filled with a lot of demonstrators, departs Metro Center. Note the anarcha-feminist flag near the center of the car.


All of us transferring to Red switched at Metro Center, and I got Breda 3137, a rehab. A bunch of us from the protest discussed the day’s events all the way up to Silver Spring. Then I got to Glenmont, caught the Y9 right away, and got home. Now I had to dry a lot of stuff out for the next day. I washed the mud off my Chucks, and hung my hoodie to dry. Then I also had to recharge Big Mavica’s batteries, in order to be ready for Saturday. I’d completely gone through one battery, and partly through another. Those needed to be topped off.

And that was it for Friday! All I had left to do was to go to sleep, and I’d be all set for Saturday’s march…

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Part 1 – Part 2 – Part 3 – Part 4 – Part 5

Part 2