Here's what protests look like with the black bloc:
Here's what protests look like without the black bloc:
Back in the late 80's, I was involved in a few protests when the Black Bloc form of protest was in it's infancy in North America. The concept as we understood it back then was that we would form a Bloc that would protect the protesters who weren't willing or able to face police brutality. In the second video, the Black Bloc would form a line facing the police and basically face the faceless cops on their own terms, and fight back. A couple of hundred protesters would be sufficient to stop the cops from starting police riots. Make no mistake, I'd seen the cops in Toronto and Ottawa provoke confrontations on more than one occasion.
I was young, angry and had very little to lose if I got arrested.
I'm not going to join a Black Bloc today, but I certainly do understand why young people, when faced by cops who are hell bent on intimidating peaceful protests, might decide to respond in kind.