G20’s latest Toronto victims: trees

G20’s latest Toronto victims: trees

Trees: the silent killers (Gunnshots) 

Security mania took another turn in Toronto yesterday as city workers removed trees from the security core around the Metro Convention Centre. Apparently they’re a leafy menace to world leaders and a potential weapon. Or maybe it’s because protesters could climb them. Or something. There doesn’t seem to be any one reason.

The National Post reports:

The trees could be ripped out of the ground by demonstrators, “and then you’ve got a huge bar,” said Constable Wendy Drummond, a spokeswoman for the Integrated Security Unit. Despite promises from summit organizers to replace the trees once foreign leaders leave town on June 27, the move bewilders tree lovers.

“The idea of tearing down something that’s going to be living for 100 more years for a three-day meeting is insane,” said Mark Calzavara a spokesman from the Council of Canadians.

We’re not lumberjacks (and that’s OK), but the idea that a bunch of hippies would take out their anger on a tree of all things is odd on so many levels. First of all, the categories “G20 protester” and “tree hugger” might not literally be the same, but they probably overlap quite a bit. Second, ever try pulling down a tree? As Calzavara says, “You’d need an axe to cut the thing down. And if you’ve already got an axe, you wouldn’t need a tree.”

The score so far for the G20: build one fake lake, tear down one real (urban) forest.

• Trees latest G20 security casualties [National Post]
• Workers uproot trees, police order cars towed ahead of G20 summit [Globe and Mail]
• Tearing out trees… inside the security perimeter? [Globe and Mail]