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May 17, 19

Hamilton Police PR Stunt met with Counter-Demo

Originally published on North Shore Counter-info about a response to “Coffee With a Cop” events.

Perhaps the easiest question ever asked: “Would you like your coffee with or without cops?”

“Coffee with a Cop,” a public relations event by Hamilton Police, found itself competing for attention with “Coffee without Cops.”

The plucky group of anarchists set up outside the entrance to Cafe Oranje in downtown Hamilton, handing out free coffee and snacks to passersby, along with information about the HPS’ abuses of civilians.

Anarchist *** told a reporter from the Hamilton Spectator that the police’s public relations event doesn’t address the core issues whatsoever, but only serves to distract from systemic corruption.

“It’s kind of insulting, holding this two doors down from where a woman was killed,” said ***, referring to the death of a 30-year-old woman, tased then shot nine times by a senior police officer last October.

In its article, the Spectator minimized ***’s comments, and did not indicate the woman was killed by police.

The event, meanwhile, was a happy success. Many community members expressed support for the counter-demonstrators. Many had constructive dialogues with the anarchists, especially after considering the information before them, and took materials home with them.

Cafe Oranje manager Mina Falcone lamented to the Spectator that protestors didn’t come in to “have a conversation.”

There is no conversation to be had with police; they will assert their point loudly, repeatedly, and wrongly, then crush your dissent. If the Police weren’t abusers, they wouldn’t need to put on public relations events.

“Everyone deserves a voice,” said Falcone, not realizing the police’s voice is already the loudest in the room.

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North Shore Counter-Info is a platform for sharing news, analysis, and events, as well as facilitating discussion and encouraging collaboration. We aspire to provide a space for strategic reflection, engaged critique, and thoughtful debate from an anarchist and anti-authoritarian perspective in Southern Ontario.

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