Another day, another demo
This protester makes her position clear to the on-looking police officers. She doesn't want to have her city dug up over the next 10+ years in order to put the train station underground. Would you?
Following an alert on facebook at 9:15 a.m., Julia and I changed our plans and instead of going to the zoo, we went to see what the newest fence looked like. The Deutsche Bahn put a fence up the day after Germany celebrated its reunification for the 21st time. After showing some weakness by hinting that they had calculated how much it would cost to renege on their contracts (€1.5 bn), they countered with strength the morning after a long weekend. Several dozen protesters were able to situate themselves on the hill behind the fence before the last link was bolted shut. Then they were asked to leave.
Although the anti-escalation crew members were present and the police officers maintained their composure (for the first couple of hours, anyway), even the strains of an accordion player couldn't help everyone remain calm. Tempers flared in some cases.
|Ever get the feeling someone else is listening in on your conversation?|
Then one by one the protesters behind the fence were carried off to the police van, where their personal data were collected.
I heard someone say, "They get good-looking police officers so that the men don't act so aggressively."
I had to believe there was some truth to that theory when I saw the women in uniform up at the fence.
|Helen and Harold Demure|
|The action is behind you!|
|Dietrich Wagner was left in peace and then left in peace|
The grass is not greener on the other side of this fence. Stuttgart has been split apart by this construction project. The past two days (Oct. 10-11, 2011) Stuttgart has been paralyzed by a strike by the tram and bus drivers. Yesterday there were 50 miles of traffic jams in and around the metropolis. Yesterday evening as I was going to pick up my son from the other side of town and had to detour around the weekly Stuttgart 21 protest at the train station, I tried to imagine what the traffic situation would be like with a huge pit in the middle of the city for 7-10 years and major delays and disturbances in public transport. That will be really messy. The two "stress tests" that the plans for the new train station have passed did not take into consideration the construction period and how it would affect the citizens of the metropolitan region of Stuttgart.
The next day, a ditch was dug through the hillside so that blue pipes could be laid to pump out the ground water before the big dig. However, the following day the Deutsche Bahn was ordered to fill it back in.