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Taking aim at the CNE air show

Roy Mitchell donned a “decibel detector” on his head — a papier mâché ball bedazzled with knick-knacks — to see if the noise from his friend drowned out the planes.

As jets rumbled overhead, Farzana Doctor let out her own roar.

Roy Mitchell donned a “decibel detector” on his head — a papier mâché ball bedazzled with knick-knacks — to see if the noise from his friend drowned out the planes.

Passersby cocked their eyebrows. The jets continued on unfazed.

Their mock experiment was all part of a protest against the CNE’s air show.

About 10 people huddled for a picnic beneath a rain-soaked tarp in Trinity Bellwoods Park yesterday to protest what they call an antiquated event that pollutes the environment, disturbs residents and promotes symbols of militarism.

“So often the argument people use for keeping the air show alive is: ‘It’s tradition.’ We think it’s an outdated tradition,” said Doctor. “We hate that there are these war planes flying over Toronto neighbourhoods.”

The group’s members say there is a growing intolerance among Torontonians against the jet spectacle. However, instead of holding a confrontational protest, they thought it would be more productive to hold a picnic that raises attention to the social and environmental problems they attribute to the air show.

“What are you going to do, stand at the CNE and yell at people?” Mitchell said. “I think there’s a lot to be said about using farce and making a potato salad.”

 
 
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