kyle cassidy (kylecassidy) wrote,
kyle cassidy

Almost got myself arrested yesterday

About two, it was dead here at Madison Square Garden so Susan (the Silicon Alley reporter i'm working with) and I dedcided to go down to ground zero and try and find some delates to interview. Well, there weren't many delegates down there, or at least not wearing their credentials, but there were a few protesters. We interviewed the Iraqi Veterans Against the War

and were talking to some guy with a ralph nader for president sign when someone said "we're starting the march". so the nader guy starts walking east up Fulton, we're walking with him, i'm snapping pictures, susan's got her microphone ... as we got to the corner, a policeman with a megaphone said "this march does not have a permit. if you violate any new york city traffic laws, you may be arrested." the light turned red, the crowd stopped. there were maybe 500 people in all. the light turned green, we crossed. maybe 100 feet up the block and 40 or 50 bicycle patrol cops pulled up along side of us, a bunch of cops in riot gear blocked the sidewalk in front of us and a police officer in a white shirt ran down the street waving his arms and said "everybody here is under arrest! everybody here is under arrest!"

i completly blanched, thinking that i really didn't want to spend all of my vacation days in jail in new york. i turned to the cop nearest me and said "we're press, can we get out of here?" he shook his head "no" at first, susan waved her press credentials. the cop looked around, i'm guessing to see if there was someone he could ask. finally he moved his bike a little and said "go ahead". we crossed the street and joined about 40 photographers and cameramen who had assembled on the other side. an AP runner didn't get out, we watched her waving her press credentials in vain. a van pulled up, a bunch of people were flex cuffed, photographed and loaded in. this was a very _unthreatening_ crew, a few women in their 60's, a 17 year old and his father who'd come from chestnut hill PA to see a play in NYC and decided to walk along with the protesters.

 We went back to the garden in time to run into Newt Gingrich and NY congressman Charlie Rangal, both of whom i got decent photos of. Congressman Rangal was very talkative, and spent a good deal of time with Susan talking about technology. Newt was a bit taciturn, he was there to talk to Fox news and wasn't interested in us. More at siliconalley

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