You have to dig deep in The N&O for this one, but it seems that last Friday night in Chapel Hill, there was a dust-up between the Chapel Hill po-po and revelers at a party organized by Internationalist Books.

Approximately 50 people were gathered to bury capitalism, a ritual that was to culminate with the placing of a mannequin labeled “Capitalism” into a coffin that had been doused with kerosene. But before the effigy could be set ablaze, Chapel Hill’s finest intervened and an altercation ensued.

Witnesses said they saw police use pepper spray and batons. Some complained about excessive force to break up what they thought was a dance party.

“They were very peaceful until the cop pushed one of the protesters down,” said UNC-Chapel Hill freshman Ariana Lucido, who witnessed the clash.

Police Chief Brian Curran said his officers dealt with the situation appropriately. He said police do not condone dancing in the street and had not issued a permit for the protest.

“Once you’re out there trying to get stuff out of the street, and people start physically manhandling you, you’ve got to defend yourself,” Curran said. “Usually when we have protests in Chapel Hill, people are at least civil to the point where they don’t attack you. I don’t think I can say that for this crowd.”

Given that it seems to have been two cops versus 50 demonstratorsand the law wonChapel Hill’s young radicals aren’t quite in the same weight class as the Wobblies and the Spartacists.

Only one person, Internationalist manager Nick Shepard, was arrestedfor assaulting a police officer. Shepard declined comment to The N&O.

(Note to N&O: It’s “Internationalist Books,” not “International Books.” Big difference.)