“This obscene waste of money is over,” yelled a protestor as the game ended and the week of protesting came to an end.
It was a long week of protests for the metro as cameras and police came from everywhere to prevent potential rioting. It’s unclear whether the security was there for the demonstrators or the fans.
On Friday, Feb. 2, campaigners against the Super Bowl protested about corporate greed at Home Depot and demanded that corporations stop supporting actions against immigrants and start respecting their janitors with better pay. The demonstration was organized by Navigate MN and Centro de Trabajadores Unidos en Lucha (CTUL), a pro-immigrant activist group protesting the Federal crackdown.
Also on Friday was a protest at Minneapolis Mayor-elect Jacob Frey’s residence, demanding police disinvestment and demilitarization. Minneapolis police worried protesters would move to cut off traffic on a nearby street but that did not occur.
On Saturday, it was the students’ turn to demand the city “get cops out of schools” and end the “school to prison pipeline.” The event was organized by the Young People’s Action Coalition (YPAC), a group dedicated to organizing high school students in movements for justice.
In opposition to School Board Chair Rebecca Gagnon, they chanted, “Hey hey, ho ho, SRO’s have got to go,” and, “Bow down Gagnon—we the students are the bomb! We ready, we coming!” SRO is an acronym for School Resource Officers who are stationed in schools in full uniform, including weapons, something many want to end.
Also on Saturday was the water protector’s demonstration at U.S. Bank, demanding they divest from oil and gas pipelines.
Super Bowl Sunday brought three events/actions: the march to the stadium, the blocking of the light rail line to the stadium, and the blocking of the stadium’s main entrance. The march to the \tadium started at Peavey Park and did block traffic for a bit as follower cars were added due to the cold weather.
Shortly after 3 p.m., protesters managed to block the light rail service to the stadium by chaining themselves across the track. It was reported that 17 of the 40 or so protesters at this site were arrested and the tracks were cleared by 3:45 p.m.
The third arm of the protest was the blocking of one of the stadiums entrances, which ended after negotiations with police. At the stadium protest, more than 300 protestors from 22 organizations took a knee to protest police violence and brutality in Minnesota.
Winona LA Duke and her “Stop Line 3” group were there in their recently repurposed and brightly painted bus protesting as well. Some estimates say that over 500 people were involved on a very cold and windy Sunday through sheet Minnesota resolve.