Red shirts protest- February 13, 2011; Just Another Sunday

Summary of the weekend- no issues at protests, police didn’t enforce ISA laws against yellow shirts, yellow shirts refuse to leave permanent protest site but draw small numbers, red shirts draw large numbers for temporary protest and drivers were the main people inconvenienced by protest marches.

The red shirts drew 30,000 protesters in a protest that began at the Criminal Court and ended at the Democracy Monument. The message of the protest was “no double standard” as red shirt leaders remain jailed while their yellow shirt counterparts were not jailed for the same offenses.

Reports of the protest were that it was peaceful and upbeat. Former PM Thaksin called in and addressed the protestors. The yellow shirt protest site is very close to the Democracy Monument, at one point last evening key red shirt and yellow shirt leaders were addressing their respective protesters at the same time. Amazing Thailand.

And just like the yellow shirts protest, the red shirts protest didn’t make the front page of the newspaper.

The protests are sucking my attention away from other things “Bangkok”, do not reflect the view of many Thais that are simply working and going about their business and do nothing to promote Bangkok and Thailand to foreigners. These protests have very little in common with protests being held in other parts of the world.

I feel Bangkok is safe, 98% of the city is life as usual.

Yesterday I had a great Thai massage (2 hours, US$12.00), went to MBK to get my iPhone jail broken (MBK is the center for all things electronic: http://www.mbk-center.co.th/th/ ), went to a “floating market festival” outside Central World (temporary festival with loads of food) and wrapped things up with a meal at a just opened Vietnamese restaurant.

I, like most, enjoyed a nice Sunday in Bangkok and was not even slightly inconvenienced by the protests.

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About faranginbangkok

Additional pictures: http://www.tumblr.com/blog/faranginbangkok For more updates about Bangkok, Thailand and other thoughts: www.twitter.com/lilrichardb I began working in Bangkok during 2008- a time that featured a great deal of political unrest in Thailand and particularly Bangkok. I had lived in San Francisco for 15 years and was working on a project in Thailand. Generally I spent 2 weeks in Bangkok and then 3-4 weeks in San Francisco. Did Bangkok begin to feel like home? Yes, and No. Bangkok and the Thai culture forced me to feel many things, the change in culture and environment was so dramatic it forced the decision- embrace or ignore. I embraced and made Bangkok my home and base in 2009. I have enjoyed living in Bangkok, experiencing Thailand and the entire ASEAN region.
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