While watching the lead up to the recent SPP conference, I found it odd that specific areas were being set up for protesters. I hadn't seen that before and so of course it crossed my mind that it defeated the purpose of protests.
Whether you agree with peaceful protests or not, it's often marched out as an example of how wonderful democracy is. In this case, however, it seemed to me that this democratic right was being controlled. The protesters obviously thought the same thing, as they did not go to where they told and decided for themselves where they wanted to be.
I didn't think much more about it, until I saw this this morning. Yes indeed, a manual on how to deal with dissenters.
It directs the White House advance staff to ask local police "to designate a protest area where demonstrators can be placed, preferably not in the view of the event site or motorcade route."
Coincidence? Not a chance, in my opinion. I wonder if the Harper government has had one original idea since taking power?