Let Loose The Kraken


There I was thinking I didn’t really have much to blog about these days when suddenly there arose such a clatter that I sprang from my chair to see what was the matter. (Or, you could say that I eventually got up off the sofa to see where the music and yelling was coming from and if the students were having a party nearby.) It turns out that there was a protest march passing near our street. I’m not sure where they started from, but I suspect it was at the end of Lucasbolwerk, since there were a number of cars in the procession and Lucasbolwerk isn’t really a through-street. I saw banners and lots of dogs of the mutt persuasion and lots of young people with dreadlocks. They were, in fact, krakers (squatters).

It seems the Twede Kamer (the Dutch Parliament/Congress/political body) recently passed a ban on squatting. This obviously hasn’t gone over well with the squatters, so they’ve staged various protests, including today’s here in Utrecht. The banner in the photo above basically says: Squatting, not a problem but a solution. There are obviously mixed opinions on the matter and pros and cons to it, as well.

The bit of the march that I saw was peaceful and calm. Hopefully it stays that way.

5 thoughts on “Let Loose The Kraken

  1. Oh yeah, we saw this too…I’m okay with squatting as long as property doesn’t get trashed and there is a loose agreement with the owner if possible. There are pros and cons like anything else…

    • Yeah, I’ve heard some stories about the plus side of it all, which have left me with a good impression. On the other hand, if there’s destruction and crime, obviously it’s not going to be a good thing for anyone. It’s almost a case-by-case basis.

      Either way, it will be interesting to see how this plays out. Will they waste time and resources kicking out people who are behaving well and have a certain amount of agreement with the owners or will they focus more on the trouble makers?

  2. My first thought when I read the title was of Pirates of the Caribbean. “Realise the Cracken.”

    Anyway… I’ve lived by a few squatter places before not really sure what my feelings are about it really.

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