On November 5, 2005 activists held a protest at the 41st Ave. entrance to the Capitola Mall parking lot. 41st Ave is a very high traffic road in Santa Cruz County. Many motorists honked and gave thumbs up in support of the demonstration bringing attention to the forest destruction caused by the millions of catalogs distributed for Victoria’s Secret.
There were a lot of mall security and Capitola police officers guarding the mall and Victoria’s Secret. Demonstrators told me that they were in the mall parking lot and walking towards the entrance to the mall when they were quickly stopped by Capitola police and mall security officers who informed the demonstrators that the sidewalk on 41st Ave. was as close as they were going to get to Victoria’s Secret.
One police officer outside the mall had a video camera and another police officer told the demonstrators that they knew about the demonstration because they read their website.
In the future, demonstrations can be organized autonomously and people can partake in more subversive methods of educating and outreaching to Victoria’s Secret customers. Actions which take place inside the mall and specifically inside Victoria’s Secret are both higher risk and higher profile, but they are not necessarily more effective.
I think the Capitola Mall (and sidewalk on 41st Ave.) is a fantastic place to hold demonstrations. The more people and organizations, the better. The Capitola Mall is a clear expression of over consumption and exploitation, which is the essence of capitalism.
For more information about the local campaign pressuring Victoria’s Secret, check out this post on SC-IMC:
Here are some links to reports from a few of the more than 300 demonstrations that took place across North America:
Crossposted at Santa Cruz Indymedia.