Courtney Love got more than she bargained for during her Uber ride from the Charles de Gaulle airport into the city of Paris, France this morning. The pop-punk queen found herself caught in the middle of a large-scale protest organized by French taxi unions. She recounted every detail on Twitter.
The Uber vehicle that Love was sitting inside of was damaged by protesters, who are upset that Uber’s cutthroat business practices and low-cost apps and services are undermining the historic city’s regular taxi industry. Love began her Twitter play-by-play with a message to Kanye West, who was apparently also in Paris this morning. She also posted a picture of a car window, which was broken.
Love’s tweets took on a dramatic edge when she reported that her driver was taken “hostage”. The baby-doll grunge star appealed to the president of France, Francois Hollande, to intervene, comparing the situation to a war zone.
After a while, Love located two French motorbikers who were also navigating the traffic. She paid them to drive her the rest of the way to her hotel. She later tweeted that somebody threw a rock at them as they roared away.
“I was scared out of my wits,” Love wrote on Instagram. She also wondered, in what seems to be an misguided accusation, whether president Hollande is a “president or a libertine.” She wrote: “[L]ove French people but your government blows.”
Public protesting is in fact a common social and political practice in the European country, which has a strong history of democracy, liberalism, and making efforts to protect its working class. At least, making more efforts than what we typically see in the United States. Demonstrations in France rarely become violent, and Courtney Love is suspected to have been exaggerating the danger. Only one taxi driver, a protester, was injured, and the greatest disturbance caused by the demonstration was the slowing down of traffic. Love herself was detained for a little under an hour.
French police that some 2,800 taxi drivers were involved in the protest. Uber itself released a statement that counted only 1,000 protesters. The ride-sharing company insists that its practices in France a legal. Love is the widow of Nirvana frontman, Kurt Cobain.