The riots also offered a glimpse into how photographs can be used out of context:
‘Sir: In last week’s article about the poll-tax riot in Trafalgar Square (‘THE MOB’S BRIEF RULE’, 7 April) there is a large photograph labelled ‘A West End shopper argues with a protester’. The woman in the photograph is me, and I thought you might like to know the true story behind the picture.
I was on my way to the theatre, with my husband. As we walked down Regent Street at about 6.30pm, the windows were intact and there was a large, cheerful, noisy group of poll-tax protesters walking up from Piccadilly Circus. We saw ordinary uniformed police walking alongside, on the pavement, keeping a low profile. The atmosphere was changed dramatically in moments when a fast-walking, threatening group of riot-squad police appeared.
We walked on to the top of Haymarket, where the atmosphere was more tense and more protesters were streaming up Haymarket from the Trafalgar Square end. Suddenly a group of mounted police charged at full gallop into the rear of the group of protesters, scattering them, passers-by and us and creating panic. People screamed and some fell. Next to me and my husband another group of riot-squad appeared, in a most intimidating manner.
The next thing that happened is what horrified me most. Four of the riot-squad police grabbed a young girl of 18 or 19 for no reason and forced her in a brutal manner on to the crowd-control railings, with her throat across the top of the railings. Her young male companion was frantically trying to reach her and was being held back by one riot-squad policeman. In your photograph I was urging the boy to calm down or he might be arrested; he was telling me that the person being held down across the railings was his girlfriend.
My husband remonstrated with the riot-squad policeman holding the boy, and I shouted at the four riot-squad men to let the girl go as they were obviously hurting her. To my surprise, they did let her go – it was almost as if they did not know what they were doing.
The riot-squad policemen involved in this incident were not wearing any form of identification. Their epaulettes were unbuttoned and flapping loose; I lifted them on two men and neither had any numbers on. There was a sergeant with them, who was numbered and my husband asked why his men wore no identifying numbers. The sergeant replied that it did not matter as he knew who the men were. We are a middle-aged suburban couple who now feel more intimidated by the Metropolitan police than by a mob. If we feel so angry, how on earth did the young hot-heads at the rally feel?’
Mrs R.A. Sare, Northwood, Middlessex Source
Ed embarks upon his gangster rap about Labour’s One Nation 10p tax gutter tune… word
this is basically a challenge for someone to write a rap about the 10p tax rate
listen up homies i’m the best around
it’s ed miliband taxin’ 10p in the pound
gonna put right a wrong made by gordy b
put some bling back in tha economy
my crew’s one nation, fightin off inflation
balls to the wall, new plans on taxation
all of them millionaires sittin pretty in their cribs
can’t avoid me for long cuz i got dibs
lib dems holla at me, tories got no plan b
ukip ain’t shit but labour u can guarantee
every day we’re learnin, every day we’re burnin
to haul ass into numbah 10 and do some more u-turnin
Scientific American is partnering up with ScienceDebate.org to get the candidates to talk about science and science-influenced policies. Why?
If you look beyond the made-up controversies that seem to dominate political discussion these days to the real issues—the real challenges, threats and opportunities that the U.S. faces today, tomorrow and for the rest of the century—you’ll find that most of them require a better grasp of some key scientific question or research field. Sometimes the link is obvious—as with global climate change. Other times it becomes clear only upon reflection—as with creating new avenues of economic innovation (just what do you think has fueled a substantial amount of the growth in the US economy for the past sixty years?)
Science isn’t the biggest issue on most people’s political radar screens this year (or any), but its influence on education and economy demands that we get some good answers out of these guys, dontcha think? Check out the 14 questions they will be asked.
Slate has two recent articles that illustrate a growing fear of facts. The first looks at the Republican party generally and Mitt Romney specifically.
It’s tough times for facts in America. First Mitt Romney—interviewing for the position of president—declined to release his tax returns…
I Got 99 Particles But A Boson Ain’t One
Thanks to my Twitter friends for sending me this awesome Large Hadron Collider rap. Stephen Hawking’s voice droppin’ fat beats while the CERN MCs explain what each detector does and how the various collisions will enlighten our understanding of our universe boiiiiiiiiiii …
Of course, now that they’ve discovered the Higgs bizzity-boson, tha haters best step off …
(by Will Barras)
Visual Storytelling on Steroids
This is one slide from an incredible example of how graphic journalists are mashing up audio, photography and illustration to tell complex and in-depth stories.
This piece from Luke Radl focuses on the NATO protests in Chicago last month. Matt Bors of Cartoon Movement notes in an email that this may be the first cartoon in which all the text is in HTML, therefore search engine friendly.
Click through the entire piece, listen to the audio and check out the photos here: http://www.cartoonmovement.com/icomic/38
P.S. For more great graphics journalism see Susie Cagle’s Tumblr.