In a statement that was published in all major print media and read on all radio and television stations, the Doves declared that they had decided to withdraw their services to The Park for an unspecified length of time “in order to bring to light the change in attitude and decorum of Park Police and, by implication, the 2012 Archons.”
In the statement, the Doves complained about being “shut out” of events this year. They also cited the recent presence of Park Police at celebrations such as the annual Harvest Festival and Snowbird Farewell as evidence of a changing attitude of the Archons toward Park residents.
“These are events that we are, usually, sent to…not as peacekeepers, but as the symbol of interspecial harmony and peace,” said Georgina Golub, spokesBird for the Doves. “The decision, this year, to send police in our stead marks a change in attitude that we consider ominous.”
Historically, the Doves, who are a fully autonomous sub-group of Park Police, have been sent to attend all Park celebrations and days of significance. After a disruption during the Park Interspecial Film Festival (PIFF), however, the Department of Holidays, Festivals, and Celebrations took the decision to send Park Police, instead.
“We wanted to restore calm and order to our celebrations,” Aintza Kanariar, Director of Public Relations for the Department, said in a telephone interview. “After the Noon Nuttiness surprise [violence], we felt we needed to be careful, at least for a while.”
But SpokesBird Golub called police presence at the Surrender of the Nut “the last straw.”
“On one of our most solemn occasions, the very symbol of peace, harmony, and trust, celebrants looked around and saw police everywhere. But when they looked up at the sky, they saw nothing,” she said.