Almost 3,000 people came together in Lisbon today for a protest to demand greater individual and social freedom.
Say reports, the event was ‘against the management of the Covid-19 pandemic’.
That is putting it diplomatically: this was the coming together of multiple groups and individuals ‘horrified’ by the restrictions that have been brought in in the name of a virus that in their mindset ‘most people recover from’.
The protest began in Parque Edward VIII and moved on down Avenida da Liberdade, stopping in Rossio, where the assembled crowds sang songs and gave speeches.
As newspapers report, “the majority were not wearing masks or keeping a safe social distance”.
Banners made for the event were emblazoned with slogans like ‘Covid-1984’, ‘Give our Freedom back’, ‘Leave the kids alone’ , ‘the media is the virus’ and ‘experimental vaccines: we will not be guinea pigs”.
These were not a small band of foreign residents: they were predominantly Portuguese – singing the traditional songs of protest like Zeca Afonso’s ‘Grandola Vila Morena’.
The event was organised over social media, and attracted people from many corners of the country, the Algarve included. It was timed to coincide with similar events that went ahead in other capital cities throughout the world.
Said one of the many who took part today: “The vibe was fantastic! Thousands of people smiling and feeling free”.
PSP police ‘accompanied the event’ but there were very few ‘incidents’. According to people taking part in the demo, the police presence was not in the least bit oppressive.