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Storming CNN Center: A21 FTAA soli action in Atlanta

Atlanta 4/21/01: 150 protesters from several southeast states rallied and marched in downtown atlanta. CNN was one of their corporate targets, part of the FTAA solidarity actions. [Story and 2 sets of photos]
Boisterous Horde Descends on CNN Center
Warren Goodwin, IMC/Atlanta
4/21/01

This afternoon about 150 protesters from several southeast states descended upon the global headquarters of the Cable News Network (CNN), located in downtown Atlanta. The action at the CNN Center was part of a series of confrontations at corporate headquarters during a march in solidarity with the FTAA demonstrations in Quebec City.

The protestors arrived at the main entrance to the Center carrying signs and beating on colorful drums, and about 15 people entered. Inside, they began dancing and yelling "CNN Tells Lies!" According to participants, most of those who entered were pushed back out, unscathed, by security guards, but one protestor was lifted by his belt and bodily thrown out, slamming into the doorjam in the process.

Shortly after arrivial, a banner reading "CNN: Half the Story, All the Time" was hung from accross the street, a reference to CNN's sensationalistic coverage of protests and its failure to include protester perspectives.

"They have shitty coverage, and it's always told fom the side of the police," said one demonstrator. Another protestor had this to say: "They tell us part of the story; the part that they and their sponsors want us to hear, sponsors being their advertisers and corporate partners like AOL, Time, and Warner" concluding, "Nothing contrary to those corporate sponsors' interests is broadcast."

Once they were outside, they continued to chant, shout and beat on the remarkably resonant CNN logo. According one participants, one security guard began to remove his baton but was deterred by a protester who put his hand on it and said something to the effect that "no, we're not about that, we're not about violence..."

After creating quite a spectacle for the bewildered crowds standing in line for the "CNN Tour" and other people within the center (which is open to quieter members of the public) the protesters moved on to other corporate targets elsewhere in downtown, but not before tagging the oversized CNN logo with the circle-A anarchy symbol. (see photos)

The protester who was thrown out by his belt has since vomited blood and will be seeking medical attention.
 
 

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