[dc-critmass-list] Buff Crit Mass
adventure_pup at yahoo.com
Thu Jun 5 15:07:30 EDT 2003
Another more-in-depth piece on Buffalo.
> Hey all,
> As a proud Buffalo native now living in DC, I just wanted to share with
> everyone on this list the struggles that our fellow bicycle enthusiasts are
> currently undergoing in buffalo.
> Article on the front page of the Buffalo News website:
> Pictures of last Friday's Buffalo Critical Mass (which apparently survived
> only because someone threw their camera into the bushes as they were being
> The following is an account from http://www.politicswny.com/
> An apparently peaceful outing of bicyclists was disrupted when Buffalo police
> halted the approximately 100 bicyclists who call themselves "Critical Mass."
> The group meets monthly on the last Friday of each month for a peaceful bike
> ride in Buffalo.
> Friday, a police car pulled in front of the group. Apparently, the bicyclists,
> who are supposed to ride by two by two, side by side, had fanned out to
> three/four wide and were blocking the entire lane on Elmwood to passing
> Police told the cyclists to move over; everyone complied except two in the
> rear of the group who possibly had not heard police orders. As police wrote
> tickets for the two, the entire group was ordered to halt.
> Eyewitnesses say, one policemen ordered some of the group to stand on the
> sidewalk while they waited. Another officer ordered the same group off the
> sidewalk, and onto the street near the curb.
> The, perhaps, sole African American in the group, Professor Heron Simmonds
> approached one of the police officers and asked for clarification of these
> conflicting orders.
> Several witnesses claim, one of the officers referred to Professor Simmonds as
> a "savage" and handcuffed him. Another officer allegedly taunted Simmonds, who
> wears dreadlocks, saying, "there's shampoo and soap and water in Buffalo. We
> also have combs and brushes here."
> Then he asked Prof. Simmonds, "What do you do?"
> "I teach at Canisius College."
> "What do you teach?"
> "Ethics," Professor Simmonds answered.
> While Simmonds was being handcuffed, Dr. Niman walked over to take photos, a
> police man (seen in photos taken by a member of Critical Mass) is standing
> behind him.
> Niman, say witnesses, identified himself to police as a journalist with
> Artvoice, a local weekly publication, and within seconds a number of policemen
> converged on him, gagged him, slammed his head against the police car hood,
> and beat him with their billy clubs.
> Dr. Niman said, "I clearly identified myself as a journalist before policemen
> started clubbing me. In fact, in photo 55, under enlargement, Dr. Niman is
> seen with his camera reflected in the sunglasses that police officer Santiago
> is wearing.
> Witnesses continue, while Dr. Niman was being gagged, and beaten with billy
> clubs, he told officers, "I'm not resisting here are my hands."
> According to another witness, a police officer hurt his thumb slamming
> Dr.Niman's head against the hood of the car.
> Police say Dr. Niman bit the officer.
> When police allegedly started beating Dr. Niman, his wife and several friends
> became alarmed. They came forward and police allegedly pushed at least one
> woman to the ground. "She was fortunately wearing a bike helmet," said one
> member of critical mass. "The force that she was pushed to the sidewalk made
> her hit her head and she would have certainly cracked her skull except she was
> wearing a helmet."
> Within minutes of Niman's arrest seven others were arrested. Reporter Janet
> Hinkel took some of the photos seen here on this site.
> What caused police to, say multiple witnesses, "erupt in violence," will
> undoubtedly come out as the 40 plus witnesses tell their tale, the District
> Attorney, perhaps the FBI investigate.
> Meanwhile, Dr. Niman is faced with a felony charge, biting an officer. A
> charge however that is vigorously rebutted by numerous witnesses.
> Dr Niman writes a weekly column for Art Voice entitled "Getting a Grip" ...
> Niman's column also appears in this publication weekly & his columns, on
> issues of the day, are nationally syndicated through Alternet. In previous
> articles he has criticized police for their treatment of cyclists. Dr. Niman
> is also a journalism professor at Buffalo State College.
> We will certainly be contacting Buffalo Police for comment!
> dc-critmass-list mailing list
> dc-critmass-list at lists.mutualaid.org
> To (un)subscribe: http://lists.mutualaid.org/mailman/listinfo/dc-critmass-list
> free hosting by http://www.mutualaid.org
Dr. Kenneth Mayer
Department of Classics and Egyptology
Locke Hall 264
pythian at comcast.net
I'm not singing "once-upon-a-time."
Let's face it: my times are better.
Get out of town, you old-school muse!
Back then Kronus was lord. Now Zeus the Young Rules.
--Timotheus, as quoted in Athenaeus 122d
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
More information about the dc-critmass-list