Friday, August 27, 2004

Critical Mass in Manhattan

Thousands of cyclists rode through the streets of Manhattan last night in an anti-Republican, pro-environment display of bike power that ended in more than 100 arrests by the police after the ride blocked some streets.

With a cacophony of bells, whistles, and guttural screams and plenty of anti-Republican attire, several hundred cyclists rode through the streets of Manhattan last night in a display of bike power.

Despite tension over police warnings to obey traffic laws against blocking vehicular traffic and running red lights, the cyclists - numbering 5,000, the police say - did just that in a meandering course that started at Union Square and wound its way to the West Side, Central Park, Midtown and the East Village.

As of 11 p.m., Paul J. Browne, a police spokesman, said officers were still processing people who were detained but that he expected more than 100 people to face charges, mainly for disorderly conduct.

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