Around 5,000 people danced a peaceful protest through Sydney’s streets yesterday – citing their issue with restrictions that inhibit their right to party.
The proclaimed “street party” was the initiative of the Australian branch of the international Reclaim The Streets movement, and squarely pointed the finger at the influence of big corporations on public policy.
The Group’s marketing says this is embodied by the “decay of our nightlife” and centred much of the weekend’s slogan base around a cry to “end the lockout”. It suggests that property developers, casino owners and the banking sector are effecting change in pursuit of their own agendas.
Beginning at Hyde Park Fountain at 1pm, the colourful, music-bearing dancing crowd headed up William Street to Kings Cross, then along to Taylor’s Square on Oxford Street for a culmination party.
Importantly, no-one was arrested at the protest, with participants eager to portray messages of inclusion and ‘love’ not discrimination or violence.
A Facebook page for the event listed no less than 99 “things to dance for” as well as the day’s overarching purpose. It also lists that an impressive 5,179 people attended the rally.
“Reclaim The Streets is a protest and a street party, but most importantly it’s a celebration of what our public life could be.”
Some of the items on the wish-list included “A casual beer” in the park or walking down the street, and take-away liquor beyond 10pm.
Significantly, the list also included “Personal responsibility” and “Making your own mistakes”.
But it was largely summed up with one line: “Decriminalisation of fun”.