Wednesday, January 18, 2017
Venus Retrograde 2017: Reviving Relationships and Social Scenes By Releasing Old Ghosts
...The Venus retrograde in Aries in 2001 coincided with the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) anti-globalization protest in Quebec City that I took part in, driving day-and-night in a 15-passenger van and car caravan with other protesters from Saskatchewan. The meetings and protests occurred just as Venus stationed direct at 1 degree Aries and involved joining together with others (Venus) to fight for our rights and for our survival (Aries). It was quite an exciting and social time, joining 50,000 other protesters from many different locations, groups, and backgrounds.
The powers-that-be had learned a few things since massive protests shut down the World Trade Organization meetings in Seattle, Washington in 1999 (coined the “Battle in Seattle”). The FTAA protest was the first with a ten-foot riot police-guarded chain-link fence erected around the convention centre to segregate the mucky-mucks who were meeting behind closed doors to decide our fates.
Though marching and protesting peacefully, we were tear gassed and CS gassed terribly as we stood around the fence. The air was absolutely thick with it for hours on end, day and night. Do-it-yourself medics traveled around with water bottles, rinsing the eyes of protesters who had been overcome by pepper spray powder, which was also being used. I managed to step in a mound of it myself and was temporarily blinded by it. The gratitude I felt for the DIY medic who rinsed my eyes and restored my vision was pretty well immense. Other protesters gave out bandanas soaked in apple cider vinegar so we could breathe through the gas. (Many of us stood our ground all day and well into the night.) The self-organization and the helpful spirit behind it were refreshing to experience.
We were also sprayed with a water cannon filled with a chemical mixture that burned the skin on contact. Water cannons are hugely dangerous because of the intense water pressure and have caused severe injuries to protesters in the past, including putting people’s eyes out. Some protesters were shot with rubber bullets, which are not as innocuous as they may sound. My friend was one of them and had a huge red welt at the impact point. These can be deadly if they hit a person in the wrong spot.
In a fit of hilarious poetic justice, so much chemical weaponry was unleashed against the protesters in Quebec City that it blew back into the convention centre and shut down the meetings!
This time around as Venus prepares for retrograde motion through the sign of the warrior, we are in another volatile period, with a catalyzing event taking place January 20: the swearing in of Donald Trump as President of the United States of America. (Sounds like a joke...but isn't.) We are now near the end of the Uranus in Aries – Pluto in Capricorn square, a period associated historically with the rise of violent global fascism and totalitarianism, along with mass slaughter, surveillance, and imprisonment by the state. Stalin and Hitler are two of the figureheads associated with this period of time (mid-to-late 1930s), but there were also many lesser known characters of equal nastiness embedded in high-ranking positions in governments, business, and finance throughout the world.
Under current conditions, increased clashes between activists (especially young activists) and the police state can be expected. However, I would advise extreme caution, as I did ahead of the G20 protests in Toronto, Ontario in late June 2010. The militarized police tactics used against protesters have become even more brutal and dangerous, now including the use of Long Range Acoustic Devices (LRADs). These are energy weapons, previously used only in warfare, that emit a high-pitched, ear-splitting sound that can deafen a person, cause inner ear damage, stop a pacemaker, or cause an aneurysm. LRADs were rolled out for the first time in Canada at the G20 protests in Toronto in 2010, appearing a year earlier in the U.S. at the G20 protests in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in September 2009.
Mass arrests and overblown charges and prison sentences are also being used to intimidate protesters. Over 1,000 protesters were arrested (and often beaten/injured) at the G20 protests in Toronto in 2010. Undercover police officers infiltrated activist groups, arresting participants and charging them with things that could involve lengthy prison sentences – all for the crime of organizing a protest.
The initial “stepping up” of militarized police tactics against protesters at the 2010 G20 protests in Toronto occurred with the Uranus in Aries – Pluto in Capricorn square in its earliest stages. Jupiter (expansion, everything made bigger) was also in Aries at the time, conjunct Uranus at zero degrees Aries and square Pluto at 4 degrees Capricorn. A cardinal t-square was formed on the weekend of the G20 meetings with the Sun and Mercury in early Cancer. A call (Mercury) for safety, care, and protection (Cancer) in the face of violent and dangerous police state insanity that unleashed new and deadly technology (Jupiter-Uranus in Aries square Pluto in Capricorn).
As we move into another tension-filled time with militarized police on high alert, we must understand the long history of shared struggle against fascist/authoritarian forces and not become impatient or reckless - definite possibilities with Venus in detriment in Aries. Forcing confrontations with militarized police forces is often not worth the risk, more theatrical or symbolic than concretely productive. We must learn from the past experiences of others so that we do not make the same mistakes moving forward.
This is an excerpt from the article, "Venus Retrograde 2017: Reviving Relationships and Social Scenes By Releasing Old Ghosts." This 6,600+-word article details astrological transits, aspects, and themes that span the first six months of 2017. It is available in its entirety to Willow's Web Astrology patrons, or it can be purchased by email money order or by PayPal for $11.25.