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God bless and keep free speech -- far away from us

By Michael J. Smith on Tuesday August 26, 2008 03:18 PM

From Empire Burlesque:
Caging the Dream: Dems Wrap Freedom in Razor Wire

Individuals arrested at the Democratic National Convention will be processed at an industrial warehouse with chain-link cells topped by razor wire, a facility some have compared to the U.S. prison at Guantanamo Bay.

Groups planning marches, concerts and other events during the Aug. 25-28 convention dub the center "Gitmo on the Platte," for the nearby South Platte River...Video footage of the north Denver warehouse on Denver's KCNC-TV showed coils of razor wire topping chain-link cells. A sign read: "Electric stun devices used here." ....

"The infamous "free speech zone," set to make a comeback at Denver's upcoming Democratic National Convention, needs to be within earshot of delegates, a coalition of civil liberties advocates backed by the ACLU said [last month]. Chain link fencing or chicken wire at the end of the parade route, about 700 feet away from the Pepsi Center under the current plan, would separate demonstrators and protesters from other convention attendees, the Rocky Mountain News reported.

"No human voice, or any other sound," ACLU counsel said in Monday's amended complaint, "can ever hope to reach a person at the entrance." ... [But] protesters at the Democratic National Convention in Denver can be restricted to fenced-in areas, a federal judge ruled on Wednesday, saying that security needs outweighed curbs on their rights... "the plaintiffs have a wide variety of alternative means of expression that will allow them to effectively communicate their messages," [the judge] wrote in her 71-page ruling.

Why yes -- they can always send Barack a text message! Or maybe they can form a Facebook group. Or even write a blog post! All Americans are perfectly free to express their opinions in any venue whatsoever -- as long it is a venue which the high and mighty can ignore at their own discretion. Let their freedom ring, yes -- but let everybody else shut up. Let each and every one of us outside the golden circle of power lower our heads, muffle our voices, and keep well away when our betters are passing by. We must not disturb their party, we must not trouble their repose, we must not speak to them of what they have done, of what they countenanced, and of what they have most miserably failed to do.

Couldnta said it better myself.

Comments (3)


As you yourself observed last week, speaking to the DP, or its candidate, is a rather pathetic bit of wishful thinking. Of course free speech is a major issue, but not in this case. The point of demonstrating is not to be heard by the delegates, but to be seen by the rest of us. With or without wire cages, the networks have already decided they won't be.

Y'know, ever since Seattle, I've thought that this country's "radical" activist contingents were making a big mistake by not openly, actively attacking corporate media personnel and equipment at major protest-attracting events such as these.

Don't think the Bamababies aren't fully behind locking up anyone who criticizes their messiah. Yuppies and New-Agers together again, a more stylish fascism.

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