You’re SURE we’re supposed to throw these?

September 22, 2008


Recently, I ranted here about the sad state of today’s political protesters.

And now, more evidence that protest isn’t what it used to be. Note this caption informing us that these protesters are throwing “cobblestones, Molotov cocktails and shoes” at riot police.

Shoes? Sure enough, the street is littered with footwear. So, let’s see. We have cobblestone streets, which are hard to walk on, we have broken glass and flames from the Molotovs, and protesters creeping over that stuff BAREFOOT because they hurled their Pumas!

Gosh, I can’t imagine how the cops are going to identify the culprits. “ATTENTION! Will every foot surgeon in Budapest please report to Hungarian General Hospital? Take your time.”

More stuff from Oddly Enough


Far-right anti-government protesters throw cobblestones, Molotov cocktails and shoes at Hungarian riot police in Budapest, on September 20, 2008. REUTERS/Karoly Arvai

More stuff from Oddly Enough


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Well if they really wanted to catch them, they would call CSI Budapest, get their version of that red headed guy and he would sniff each sneaker and be able to tell who the owner was.

Posted by Tony | Report as abusive

Police for some time now have been videotaping the footwear of protesters. They do this because protesters often cover their faces etc. in order to not be identified. Therefore they started videotaping the footwear of these people, in the hopes that this would be a way of later identifying them.

In response, it seems that the protesters are responding to this tactic by throwing their shoes.

You lament the modern protester, but it is fairly clear you also do not understand them. Many of these people are intelligent and organized. Police have tried many ways of infiltration, including plants in peaceful protests to start violence and give them reason to crack down.

This is just another part in the back and forth between the protesters and the authorities. Then again, you are a reporter, and should probably know this stuff already.

Posted by Stan | Report as abusive

I guess the moral of the story is, don’t trust anyone who wears cheap “throw-away” shoes. What’s the old saying? I murmured that I had no shoes, until I met a man who was wearing . . . only shoes.

Posted by Dr. Doll | Report as abusive

In some cultures throwing shoes is extremely insulting to the target. This is true, for instance, in Islamic culture.
According to that oracle of all knowledge, Wikipedia, Hungary has a long-standing relationship with Islam, so maybe that explains the phenomena.

And, remember where the word “sabotage” comes from. Of course, I know of no wooden Pumas, Nikes, or Reeboks…

Posted by Ken | Report as abusive

Tony, your comment made me laugh

And, no offense, Stan, but whatever the “logic”, walking around barefoot on cobblestones, amidst broken glass and flames, is just plain stupid

in my own humble opinion

Posted by southerngirl | Report as abusive

A smart protester would likely bring along a second pair of shoes to avoid walking on glass and being identified by their shoes……the stupid ones, well, I guess they are stupid.

Posted by Virginia | Report as abusive

Good to see the shoe ID and shoe insult comments. The caliber of Reuters writers seems far surpassed by it’s readers. Shame.

Posted by Tim | Report as abusive

Who gets to sniff all of these shoes in order to better identify each person?

Posted by Dayshiftbob | Report as abusive

And by the way Stan, maybe you missed the Humor tag on this post.

Posted by Diane | Report as abusive

thats no puma. thats a joma.

Posted by chris | Report as abusive

What amateurs. Everyone knows the preferred projectile of choice is the stiletto.

Posted by Sky | Report as abusive

I thought this was a scene from “Attack of the Killer Sneakers,” one of my favorite cult classic movies. Singing during the opening credits goes something like this:

Dum ta dum dum ta dum dum
I know that I will miss her,
A size nine ate my sister!
Da da da dum da ta dum dum . . . .

Posted by Dr. Doll | Report as abusive