North America

Punks, Pianos and Hair Salons

Every year, September 22, car-rupt Toronto gives many dollars to a local charity to make a carfree day. They close 150 metres of car traffic on Yonge Street for four hours to show how great freedom from cars is… Streets are for People! again held many parties on Queen Street. This is the cultural backbone of the city; years ago the city hall promised to close it to cars for September 22. Of course when you live in a place full of artists and immigrants, rebels and patriots, and only 1952 old, rich, white, male @$$holes run things, fun is seldom allowed… so they cancelled this plan and never revisited it.

Meanwhile, a punk band played beside traffic in a parking spot here; a local hair salon set up barber chairs and a waiting lounge in the road over there; a piano stuck in traffic was looking for a place to park. Trumpets, drums, bikes, baby strollers, rickshaws, a piano and hundreds of people walked down Queen Street without a permit; tramways passed and cars kept away until we reached University Avenue where the entire intersection became blocked when the critical mass showed up. Of course the police were upset, but we were already at Old City Hall when they caught up with us - they didn't stay mad very long.

They also know we live in a de-mockery and no matter how much we could be Barcelona, we choose to be Destroit instead. Our politicians will cheat us into thinking they care about the health of the city, the planet and our bodies, while they subsidize the status quo of car culture. The people of our city are held hostage by their inaction. Help us!

- Streets are for People!

P.S. The revolution will not be motorised.

More information: Streets are for People

San Luis Potosi (SLP), Mexico

The Facultad del Habitat at the State University of SLP celebrated Carfree Day with a forum on mobility and sustainability, a screening of Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, a speech on climate change from the State Secretary of Ecology, a critical mass organised by Kolektive Soya and the planting of 80 trees on Paseo de la Presa San Jose by local group Bicitropicos.

More information: http://www.myspace.com/dmsaslp2008

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 This page was last updated 24 October 2008