Day 139 in the Cuadrilla House… and the good people were over 200 in number and bountiful with the vegetables and fruits of our lands as we honoured the food growers in their stand against fracking. The day was incredible… though early violent incidents by police marked its start… and lies and deceit by police marked its close. We though stopped work on the site, closed it down for the day and held our gathering in the entrance with picnic benches, music system, speakers, fine food, entertainment, dancing and joy – under the watchful though entirely still view of the standing police who took no action against us during the events. The ending though was sour… although the good people tally on success, far far outnumbers the frackers nonetheless.
So it’s a thing when you become an ’activist’ to know what and who you are at times. Our lives before activism… the lessons, learning, manners, traits and rituals of the worlds we each grew up in, are all still there but the circumstances in which we now find ourselves – are no longer always appropriate places for the things about us that once were. Our kindness, our trust, our consideration, our empathy, our respect… are even brought into question.
As today drew to a close, the site workers asked if they could be allowed to return to their families and after the police relayed this message to ask if we would move aside to let them out… we took a vote. The vast majority of good people said yes – those few that didn’t were proved right in their scepticism. We voted to let the workers go but NOT the trucks … at this point I had to leave but livestream and reports show that as the gates opened – the two trucks came out before workers and yes – we were lied to. Some of our Protectors are angry and some are hurt – depends I think on how jaded you were to begin with. I don’t feel the incident mattered in the scale of stopping fracking – two empty trucks leaving is nothing and we’re still not any closer to fracking as a result of their departure. What matters though is that on camera and face to face… the police lied to us and we will hold this to be a lesson.
On a personal note – I voted to allow the workers to leave (but NOT the trucks) and even though the police lied… have no self-recrimination as I acted from my human kindness; sadly now I will perhaps use less of it in the future and that’s another sad loss from my life by this industry and all that propels it. Some worry that we appear foolish for taking the decision we did – I think we acted with honour and humanity.
…but lesson learned. Crazy, busy times ahead. See you at the roadside?