SUE JACKSON Therapist | Writer | Photographer | Activist

An avid blogger for the last fifteen years, I believe in the power of the word to change the world. I have participated in, and reported on, a range of protests during this period, including the successful East-West Link campaign and, more recently, our wonderful, home-grown Extinction Rebellion (XR). If you believe, like I do, that it is time for ordinary people to rise up in defence of the planet, I encourage you to explore this blog, share it with your networks, and – of course – take action.

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Thrills and Spills at Tunnel Picket (Friday)

I like it!

Spotting this poster on a wall on my way to today's picket, I laughed out loud. Given the events in State Parliament yesterday, it seems that Premier Naphine's reign is getting more  and more wobbly; hopefully, he will soon be in no position to silence anyone. Along with yesterday's clever and successful initiative to invite State Ministers to accompany constituents to work via public transport, the antics in Parliament are fuelling optimism. And that is a big thrill.
Maybe Connor, who had to brave a birthday serenade from the Tunnel Picket choir for his 21st birthday today, is in for a very special present. Here he is being congratulated by Corey:

Happy Birthday to Connor!

Luckily, there was other birthday entertainment in store for Connor, apart from us. Corey had brought his guitar and mouth organ, so the rest of us were relegated to bit parts during 'Ring of Fire'. I was delighted when Connor then moved on to 'Union Maid', a regular of the wonderful folk singer and activist, Pete Seeger, who died last week at 94. But perhaps I wasn't the only one who felt a twinge of anxiety when he finished his bracket with Johnny Cash's 'Folsom Prison'.

Thank you, Corey

The spills included: Yesterday three protestors were intercepted as they attempted to occupy the rig and others were forced back so that the police could line the fence. Which is where they positioned themselves again today.
And, personally, there was a rough moment when walking past St Bridgets, adjacent to the picket site, I noticed the police vehicle below parked in its grounds.

Loitering with intent

My mother, a long-term Carlton resident, attended the primary school in that complex and still goes to Mass weekly at the church you can see behind the police car. She enjoys dinners in the church hall and fairs in its grounds. St Bridget's is very dear to Mum's heart, and she would be apalled to see it used as a car park for police bent on restricting the freedom of their fellow citizens.
But here is one last thrill: Yesterday, anticipating rough treatment, Rosie handed her most precious possession, along with her glasses, to a nearby non-combatant.

Ed and Rosie

This possession was a tea-towel which, as a treasured piece of her family history, has never seen service. In 1998, when her son, Dan, was in pre-school - Teppa Hill in the Northern Territory - a clever teacher decided to collect and convert the children's self portraits into this gift for their parents. And what a perfect gift it was. No wonder Rosie was distressed at the thought that she had lost it. But there was a saviour nearby. And today Ed, a Year 11 student and regular at our picket, was there to return the treasure to a most grateful mother.
I'd like to finish with a request from Keith:
Next Wednesday, 12 February, at 5.30 (for a 6pm start) volunteers are required for door-knocking in the South Parkville area, a neighbourhood whose residents have so far been under-represented at protests. The meeting point for door-knockers will be at the corner of Story Street and Royal Parade. Keith is confident that if sufficient people turn up, they will only be required for an hour or so.


Blogger MR.GRIM said...

Great stuff Mum, that does sound like there is a bit of a shift. Good job everyone!

6:49 PM  

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