Re: St. Catherines Day Of Action

Liberty (
Sun, 03 May 1998 18:57:12 -0400


At 01:40 PM 02/05/1998 -0700, Bonnie Briggs wrote:

>I, like Graeme, am another one of the "fools" who went to St. Catherines 
>to shut it down.

I've never been to St. Catherines myself, except driving through it a 
few times, to go to Niagara Falls (and getting lost once and ending up 
at a Burger King). I once held a major contract in Niagara Falls ('94), 
and remember having to fight my way through St. Catherines to get there, 
until somebody showed me a way to get to the Falls without going through
St. Catherines, which was tricky because I am not otherwise familiar with
that part of the province.  However, I do remember they have the big GM
plants there, I suppose they chose St. Catherines because of the GM plants.
And where there are GM plants, there is CAW, one of the wealthiest unions
in North America. Of course, they wouldn't choose Markham, would they? ;-)

I doubt they would choose this otherwise seemingly quiet town, which
has, for no other reason for its notoriety, than housing the horrible
crimes of Paul Bernardo, and Kristen French, a few years back for any
other reason?  Am I not right?

But, I suppose there were not enough people in St. Catherines to do it 
(the protest), as I heard from the radio that, like most of the recent 
so-called "Days of (In)Action", did not draw big crowds (and the media's
estimate of 3,000 to 4,000 people is NOT big crowd), particularly when 
most of the protesters were from Toronto, Oshawa, Hamilton and other big 
*hot* union/NDP spots.

I would think if the people of St. Catherines, like Sudbury, like
Peterboro, and other places that were supposedly hit by the protesters' 
inter-provincial trek, cared enough, would they not have enough people 
of their OWN to lead and organize these protests, without the "help" of
CAW and people from outside their communities to add to their numbers?  
But, then I guess, like some rolling stones, there are people that have 
it as a hobby, to demonstrate in other cities, particularly if the big
demo in their own cities barely disturbed a sleeping dog, despite being
allegedly better attended.  

I remember when Metro's own days of inaction took place about a year and 
half or so ago.  The protest organizers claimed they shut the whole city 
down both days, but in fact, this wasn't true.  I was in Toronto both days 
on business, and hardly anything was interrupted at all.  I had several
meetings that day, and the people who were at the meetings, had little
difficulty getting there, or getting their work done both of those days 
either, and yes, I was on Bay Street for a couple of hours, at least.

However, I think there was a crowd at one point trying to bust into the
Stock Exchange (TSE) to shut it down, but regardless, it started right up
again, and is still going strong.  What I'm saying is, that despite the
efforts, rightly or wrongly, of the protesters and their organizers, Mike
Harris & Company are going to go right on truckin' the way they did before,
regardless of what really amounts to a core group of radical union leaders,
communists, and occasionally, some well meaning community folks like your-
self and others, say about these things.

>OCAP went as a part of the Postal Workers' contingent. The buses left the 
>OCAP office at 4:00 am on Friday morning and went non-stop to the postal 

Why the postal workers' contingent?  Were they the union that funded this,
as of course, the unions bankrolled all the other Days of Inaction, did 
they not? I would have thought that CAW had a big hand in this, given this 
is, like Oshawa, a GM city?

>Our next picket was the GM plant. We learned that there were workers inside 
>the building who wanted to leave and other workers who wanted to go in.

So, the illegal pickets were trying to stop workers from exercising their
legal rights to work, or to go home after they finished their shifts? And, 
how is that going to impress upon Harris and other government supporters, 
they should change their minds?  I don't understand, must be something
hubby put in my tea this morning <g>.