Some of todays sights and conversations will never leave me; standing with flags held high, a young guys stereo pouring out a Tibetan lament as rank upon rank of police gather to protect the flame, a middle aged women in a suit scrambling over the barrier as passion engulfed her, teenagers, grey haired guys and my husband running for miles alongside the flame on the Stratford leg calling Shame, Shame, Shame. For me 'shame' summed up today, and not just because it rhymes so nicely with 'flame'. Shame on the Chinese government for oppressing their people and the people of other nations, shame on Brown for turning a blind eye, shame on the International Olympic Committee for not holding China to account and Shame on the Olympics Association in the UK for gagging our athletes.
Yet still, today I felt a renewed faith in human kind as we raised our voices together to scream ourselves hoarse in the name of justice.
Interesting things that don;t exactly fit anywhere in this post:
- A BBC article on the origins of the flame- Hitlers desire for a symbol of unity.
- Excerpts from the Olympic Charter Articles one and two:"Olympism seeks to create a way of life based on... respect for universal fundamental ethical principles." "The goal of Olympism is ... promoting a peaceful society concerned with the preservation of human dignity."
- Info on China's role in Sudan, Chinas domestic human rights record
- An overview of the day by Angry Chinese blogger
- A clarification: Anti- China protests? No, mate. China has some great stuff going on, first climate neutral city, great basic public education and health services, and Chinese people are for the most part I imagine, although I only know a small number, wonderful. This was an Anti-Human Rights Abuse protest and nothing else.
Thousands gather to meet the flame at the 02
The last leg: the protection was 4 people deep.