As I crossed one of the several yellow steel bridges here in Pittsburgh, I noticed the drastically reduced presence of autos. A person would perhaps think this is Carfree day in Pittsburgh or a North American version of Ciclovia, (well, not quite), were it not for helicopters flying overhead, National Guard personnel, cops on motorcycles, and the occasional dark sedan with opaque windows racing through the streets.

Across the Allegheny River, it seemed like a usual autumn day with nice weather, except that many people have today and tomorrow off from work, unable to travel easily to and from downtown. People relaxed in parks in an area across the river called the North Side. Two people I spoke with on the street during the small protest against the US backing of the Ethiopian dictatorship told me they were dissappointed about the lack of "action." They also said that some Pittsburghers want to " beat up the hippies," as they tell it.