TRAPPED, CUFFED & BUSSED
October 2, 2002 10:48 AM   Subscribe

TRAPPED, CUFFED & BUSSED Two Diamondback (Univ. of Maryland student newspaper)reporters covering the IMF-World Bank protests were arrested Friday morning and manacled for 23 hours. Surrounded by hundreds of protesters in Pershing Park, Washington Metropolitan Police circled and arrested the entire group. Jason Flanagan and Debra Kahn were there as impartial observers, and despite the newspaper's efforts to release them, they were stripped of all their possessions - even their shoelaces. What follows is a first-person account of their arrest and detention.
posted by Ty Webb (71 comments total)

 
via Tapped.
posted by Ty Webb at 10:53 AM on October 2, 2002


great article. thanks, ty.
posted by moz at 10:55 AM on October 2, 2002


If their account is proven to be accurate, then my sympathies for the District of Columbia have been reduced.
posted by tommyspoon at 10:56 AM on October 2, 2002


...stripped of all their possessions - even their shoelaces.

Well, we wouldn't want them hanging themselves in a fit of despondency over their crimes.
I know--it's policy and procedure.
posted by Shane at 11:00 AM on October 2, 2002


They arrested a busload of people in Pittsburgh, PA who were headed to that same protest on Friday evening. They held them for 24 hours and then charged them $70 to be released. They were hundreds of miles from the protest! This has not garnered any local news coverage yet, but I'll post a link when it does. I got this info from a colleague who was held.
posted by Raichle at 11:02 AM on October 2, 2002


The account should be able to be proved accurate, considering there were 400 people involved there.
posted by trioperative at 11:03 AM on October 2, 2002


"After the ordeal, we went back to the jail. Obie said he was going to put us in the cell. Said, "Kid, I'm going to put you in the cell, I want your wallet and your belt." And I said, "Obie, I can understand you wanting my wallet so I don't have any money to spend in the cell, but what do you want my belt for?" And he said, "Kid, we don't want any hangings." I said, "Obie, did you think I was going to hang myself for littering?"
--Arlo Guthrie, "Alice's Restaurant"
posted by GaelFC at 11:04 AM on October 2, 2002


"We craved Chipotle, but we couldn't express our desire without risking the wrath of the protesters who were against large corporations like McDonald's, the parent company of the popular Mexican food chain. "

Best..... burritos..... ever.......
posted by Blake at 11:10 AM on October 2, 2002


For the record, that's "bused." "Bussed" means that they were kissed.
posted by NedKoppel at 11:15 AM on October 2, 2002


I'm almost happy that this happened to them, as it may finally lend some credibility to those who say that they've been wrongly arrested. At the WTO protests in Seattle, I saw a picture of a police truck that had a sign on the inside door stating: "Strike Hard, Strike Fast, Kick Ass". It was written in red pen on a piece of notebook paper, so I don't think it's always there. Those cops aren't there to protect your rights. They're there to arrest you. Often times wrongly.
posted by Ufez Jones at 11:15 AM on October 2, 2002


...paging the hardasses...

The "America, love it or leave it" delegation is needed to insist that "those dirty ingrate kids must've done something wrong. After all, the police only arrest those who deserve it." at thread 20478.
posted by websavvy at 11:20 AM on October 2, 2002


Let me get this straight: These reporters were in the same crowd of people who were smashing store windows and throwing tear gas at the police (I saw that much on the State run TV News) and then they cry foul for being arrested for being part of an unruly mob? Their list of civil rights that were violated include: Yup, boy these guys are right up there with all of the other great protesters.... Real hardship.

Sure is alot of bitchin' about food....

even their shoelaces

This is common practice, when a person gets arrested. They take your belt, shoelaces, even necktie, if you are wearing one. Anything you could strangle some one with, hang your self with, or in general hurt some any one with.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 11:20 AM on October 2, 2002


Wow, that was fast.
posted by websavvy at 11:20 AM on October 2, 2002


This has been happening in the District for years. The police there have a policy of rounding up everyone in a particular area and holding them for some time, usually a night. They are then released because of "lack of evidence." Of course since this typically happens to poor black people instead of Amazing Grace singing uber-priviledged college kids, we don't usually hear about it.
posted by hummus at 11:23 AM on October 2, 2002


nice timing websavvy....


I am not saying that people don't have a right to protest... Just that these guys don't know any thing about having their civil right's violated, and it detracts from actual violations....
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 11:23 AM on October 2, 2002


um...Steve_at_Linwood, you were watching 'State run TV News'. They don't exactly show the whole story. Why don't you stop being blinded by cnn and give some credence to some indie news sources that haven't been bought by the government.
posted by Raichle at 11:23 AM on October 2, 2002


this is the norm!!!! people. wake up america!!! you are living in a corporate nation under money with liberty and justice for the elite few!!! The police are only "doing their job", but the job they are doing is not in your best interest, especially if you have grave concerns about how America treats living things in the US and abroad. Now that people are possibly catching on and starting to voice their opinions to the horrible injustices that are being perpetrated on the world by US foreign policy, We too will see the same treatment they recieve here. THis is the "same" story that happened in NYC in January at the WTO/IMF meeting. Peaceful march, sudden and strategic attacks of the crowd by the police in an effort to break up the very large crowd (i would guess ~20,000 joyous loving people) into smaller sub crowds. People arrested for being there, no other reasons.

Please o please o please throw away your televisions!!!
find your news(information) from non-profit sources. All tv as well as for profit news is entertainment and biased due to the fact that the media only serves the money, which in most cases are their parent companies that own them.
posted by proof_nc at 11:25 AM on October 2, 2002


Commie.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 11:30 AM on October 2, 2002


Wait...rioting University of Maryland students? Are you sure it was politically charged, and not just related to a recent sports team victory/defeat?
posted by emptybowl at 11:32 AM on October 2, 2002


They don't exactly show the whole story.

You are right, my point was that, regardless of all the other facts, I did see in many media sources that this mob was vandalizing property and throwing tear gas at the police.... Those two event, regardless of anything else, justify the arrest of the mobs that were conducting such activities.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 11:33 AM on October 2, 2002


Mmmm... burritos.

Hey, my civil rights were oppressed constantly as a college student too, living at the beach and rounded up nightly for "noise violations" by rent-a-cops paid slightly more than me, a freaking lifeguard. They would confiscate our Coors Light beer ball, which they saved for themselves after a hard night of throwing bikini-wearing girls ("Ma'am, you'll have to remove the strings from your uh, top.") in the pokey.

Yep, life sure was tough. Go Terps!
posted by Pancake Overlord at 11:35 AM on October 2, 2002


These reporters were in the same crowd of people

Nope, sorry. Standing with a crowd of people who break the law does not make you a lawbreaker. Being detained at all when they did nothing wrong is absolutely inexcusable.
posted by oaf at 11:36 AM on October 2, 2002


I'm with Steve_at_Linnwood on this one. The police officers' conduct does not seem to me to be that harsh - just inept and inefficient. Part of the problem is that they just don't know how to handle any type of protest; probably because we don't do much protesting in the States. But we should all help educate the police departments in major cities by staging more protests; and if they stage anything in Chicago, I'll be there. As long as I don't have to talk to the person who wants me to throw televisions. (!!!).
posted by stvc15 at 11:38 AM on October 2, 2002


Wake up folks!!! The police in this country will arrest you for breaking windows, marking buildings with graffiti, blocking traffic, and for standing next to people doing those things, and doing nothing to stop them!!!! It is an outrage!!!! I blame the president!!!!! What next? No urinating in public? or firebombing businesses that we don't agree with? It happens in Europe and if you don't destroy your car and your TV it will happen here too. Clue in you ignorant sheep.
posted by Mushkelley at 11:39 AM on October 2, 2002


What whiners. If you go out to report in the midst of an illegal protest (Friday morning had no permits) you run the risk of getting arrested, tear gassed, whatever. It's part of being a reporter -- the same way that a war reporter runs the risk of being blown up by a mortar shell, or a restaurant reviewer runs the risk of gaining weight.

The cops seem to have treated the illegal protesters in a measured and reasonable fashion. I know I'd expect no less vigilance and aggression if the next smelly vegan assembly chose the blocks around my office for a protest.
posted by MattD at 11:39 AM on October 2, 2002


Re: Steve_at_Linnwood

just because a few people are doing something wrong you think it is ok to arrest everyone? That is just not right. With that kind of thinking, the police could dress themselves up as disinfranchized youth meld into the crowd and break the windows to get the entire group arrested. Once everyone is detained the cops are let go to do their magic elsewhere. just possiblities. it does happen, but you sure won't hear about it on state news.
posted by proof_nc at 11:39 AM on October 2, 2002


re mattD what is an illegal protest. People in America have the right to peaceful assembly, correct? Maybe someone could enlighten me as to the reasons for having a permit and or their legality.
posted by proof_nc at 11:42 AM on October 2, 2002


Those of you who are arguing against these reporters must acknowledge that they were arrested despite breaking no laws.
posted by oaf at 11:46 AM on October 2, 2002


my point was that, regardless of all the other facts, I did see in many media sources that this mob was vandalizing property and throwing tear gas at the police.... Those two event, regardless of anything else, justify the arrest of the mobs that were conducting such activities.

No, this was purely police harassment. The cops gave no orders to disperse and simply began arresting anybody who happened to be standing in a public park. Rather than actually finding and charging the supposed vandals, they simply rounded everybody up, and in doing so violated their civil rights. Damn lazy cops.
posted by Ty Webb at 11:46 AM on October 2, 2002


the same way that a war reporter runs the risk of being blown up by a mortar shell

Where does Geraldo get his magical juju from?
posted by Pancake Overlord at 11:46 AM on October 2, 2002


I read the longer version of this:
Norman Mailer wrote it.
I guess it's true, the more things change...
posted by Fabulon7 at 11:46 AM on October 2, 2002


Yup, boy these guys are right up there with all of the other great protesters.... Real hardship.
Sure is alot of bitchin' about food....


Seems to me this can be attributed more to a certain naivete on some college-age reporters than anything else, and while the tone doesn't exactly help their case it doesn't make their arrest justified.

We opted to give our notebooks to a Washington Post reporter, who was not detained.

So why did he/she get a break?
posted by jeremias at 11:47 AM on October 2, 2002


Second Best Name Ever... Pancake Overlord
(StupidSexyFlanders is still #1)

just because a few people are doing something wrong you think it is ok to arrest everyone?

If you are among a group of people breaking the law.. Yes.
It is a very technical legal concept call "being an accomplice to a crime"

People in America have the right to peaceful assembly, correct?
Yes, but in this republic you must obtain a permit to do so. Also key words here being "peaceful assembly" Somthing this was not.

So why did he/she get a break?
Maybe because the Washington Post reporter wasn't in the mob with the protesters. I have a feeling that these "college reporters" got into the act of protesting The Man, but they cried out "I am with the Press" when they got arrested.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 11:53 AM on October 2, 2002


I'm guessing the Post reporter 1) didn't "look" like a protestor to the cops, where 'college kid' = protestor 2) Could produce valid press credentials.
posted by nathan_teske at 11:56 AM on October 2, 2002


Well Steve as long as you are basing you name calling snarkiness on your feelings, it's ok then, eh?
posted by Red58 at 12:02 PM on October 2, 2002


Well Steve as long as you are basing you name calling snarkiness on your feelings, it's ok then, eh?

Better than stating it as fact, as some might do....

It is my feeling or thought, and therefore maybe right or wrong, but, I am entitled to it, as much as these guys and gals are to think that their Civil Rights were violated.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 12:04 PM on October 2, 2002


So Steve you're saying your just as childish and deserving of remonstration as the reporters you're saying deserved their treatment?

At least their stories are based on being there, taking notes, and they have some proof in their notes. (Diaries and notes are considered as valid evidence in the courtroom. Hearsay and opinion are not.)
posted by Red58 at 12:21 PM on October 2, 2002


No Red, you are being childish by this personal attack....

My point was that all people are entitled to their opinions no matter how much you disagree with them.... So don't attempt to change the subject from these college students to me....

These reporters, regardless of the fact if they were protesting or not, were amongst a mob, who were illegally protesting with out a permit & were committing violent acts.

Next time maybe the will think, before they act... Too many people think that their actions will not have any consequences, and if they do, well heaven forbid they are responsible for their own actions.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 12:31 PM on October 2, 2002


sorry for the long OT comment below, folks.

many people are often surprised at just how much it sucks to be in jail. well, folks, it *sucks* to be in jail, and, yeah, sometimes you go to jail because you are in the wrong place at the wrong time. the thing to do about it is: find a lawyer to take on the police pro bono, and sue like crazy. it's not easy to do, but i've had a friend who successfully won a 10k lawsuit against the police (who illegally pulled him off private property and then claimed he was drunk in public). IANAL, of course (see LSAT/GRE dreams below), but, uh, i don't know if these kids have much of a case. anyone a specialist in this sort of area?

(yeah, ok, it's mostly a token comment).


For the record, that's "bused." "Bussed" means that they were kissed.


actually, ned, to use the word "bussed" in this sense is equally correct as using "bused"; at least according to webster's (ok, it's not the OED, but close enough.)

bus Function: verb
Inflected Form(s): bused or bussed; bus·ing or bus·sing
intransitive senses
1 : to travel by bus
transitive senses
1 : to transport by bus

Entry: buss Function: noun
Etymology: perhaps alteration of Middle English bassen to kiss
: KISS
- buss transitive verb

The entry doesn't indicate whether "bussed" can be used as a past tense form of "kiss". not trying to nitpick, i just wanted to check up on your comment, because i thought it was particularly interesting. actually, if you've got an oed at hand or something, and would care to elaborate on the word "buss", i'd be interested (ah, one day, GREs, I will destroy you -- yes, you will come face to face with my WORD-A-DAY knowledge, as soon as i scratch up the, well, scratch to take a test for fun -- and the way i've been drinking, well: don't expect me anytime soon.)

posted by fishfucker at 12:33 PM on October 2, 2002


I don't recall any reporters saying that their Civil Rights were violated. The article seemed a pretty cogent step by step description of what happened to these college students.

It should bother us, IMHO, that the charges were bogus. Being asked to disperse and refusing is different than being charged with refusing to disperse after NOT being asked to.

Of course this is par for the course and anyone getting involved with any public protest should be aware they take the risk of being detained for up to 72 hours simply for being present. That's simply the way it works. If you get involved in these types of events and don't expect that then you are simply naive.

None of this, of course, changes the extremely inefficent procedures of the police or the intimidation tactics used. It is tactics like this that create further disruption in the long run. They do not produce more folks willing to abandon public protests. Protest has its place. As does a police response. It would serve us all if there was a bit less naivite among protestors, and their admirers, and much better training among police.

As my buddy the cop is fond of reminding me..."In the end you are shooting yourself in the foot if guy on the street doesn't feel respected by those of us in blue."
posted by filchyboy at 12:35 PM on October 2, 2002


I don't recall any reporters saying that their Civil Rights were violated.

I quote:
"So when you hear about protesters being arrested and having their civil rights violated, you may think that they're exaggerating or that they must have provoked the police in some way. Surely law enforcers couldn't have such disregard for citizens' civil rights, you think. Think again. "
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 12:40 PM on October 2, 2002


Apparently not much of a search takes place when people are rounded up like this. Forgive if this is a twisted thought, but...

That would make one helluva suicide bombing, wouldn't it? Imagining if terrorists took out a whole bus full of Anti-War protestors, especially if the media then made the whole protest out to be some American-Palestinian "terrorists in our midst" nonsense. The government could crack down on civil liberties even harder, and the terrorists would have another big victory.

All depends on who the real terrorists are. Imagine how easy it would be for a government insider to plant a bomb inside one of the buses, even before protestors ever got on. This idea is so simple and obvious, and benefits all the players...it almost has to happen.
posted by son_of_minya at 12:41 PM on October 2, 2002


Steve: It is my feeling or thought, and therefore maybe right or wrong, but, I am entitled to it

Just be careful not to voice those feelings out loud in a public place unless you've filed the proper forms with, and had them approved by, the appropriate authorities.
posted by sreilly at 12:42 PM on October 2, 2002


SReilly, You make the point that maybe some one wouldn't allow me a permit.
Funny, the protesters on Saturday had a permit.... I guess that kinda blows that theory out of the water....
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 12:45 PM on October 2, 2002


DC Indymedia is reporting that journalists were targeted for arrest during last Friday's demonstration, and that this 4.5M Quicktime video is proof of it. You need to read the description. The video alone won't tell you much. Here's a pro-cop posting on Indymedia that might give you more of a handle on that mindset.
posted by gametone at 12:50 PM on October 2, 2002


Being asked to disperse and refusing is different than being charged with refusing to disperse after NOT being asked to.

Not just not asked to, but not allowed to disperse. According to other accounts i've read, police formed a ring around the park and tightened it, forcing fairly dispersed protestors into a compact area to make mass arrests easier.

And Steve, many times protestors intentionally don't get permits because they disagree with the need for them. It's part of the protest.

on preview: Agh, son_of_minya! You're scaring me.
posted by hippugeek at 12:53 PM on October 2, 2002


Steve, only part of my point was that the authorities may not provide a permit. I've been at completely legal non-violent protests that had permits (W's inauguration) yet the police still arrested people and attempted to forcibly prevent and break up the protest.

What happens to a group that wants to protest but is denied a permit? Isn't that a violation of the 1st amendment? If no permits are ever denied then why have them at all?
posted by sreilly at 12:57 PM on October 2, 2002


What happens to a group that wants to protest but is denied a permit?

Then they go to court. There are many many groups that have the money to fund those type of cases (ALCU anyone?). You use the system, not buck it.

yet the police still arrested people and attempted to forcibly prevent and break up the protest.

Yeah and I am sure they did do anything to provoke the police....
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 1:03 PM on October 2, 2002


A couple of things, Steve:

If you are among a group of people breaking the law.. Yes.
It is a very technical legal concept call "being an accomplice to a crime"


Not really. A proper definition of the legal term "accomplice" is something along the lines of "one who knowingly acts together with another to perform a criminal act". This definition has elements of both knowledge and action. This means you're not an accomplice to a crime simply if you watch the crime occur: you need to act to help perform the criminal act. Some states and municipalities have tried to pass "good Samaritan" laws which require bystanders to assist victims of crimes. Even these (questionably constitutional) laws do not require bystanders to put themselves in harm's way by confronting the criminal and trying to prevent the crime, however. There's really no argument for the reporters being accomplices to the alleged acts of vandalism, therefore, unless there is evidence establishing that they personally committed such acts. Your claims here are a bit out of line.

People in America have the right to peaceful assembly, correct?
Yes, but in this republic you must obtain a permit to do so.


Erm... Not completely correct. There are limits to assembly on roads, etc., since the roads have other legitimate public uses. That's why you need a permit to hold a parade. It gets dicier when we start talking about parks--but of course the government has an interest in promoting public safety and can therefore limit assembly (to some extent; they pretty much have to issue a permit if you ask the right way) on public land. When it comes to private property, however, the right to assemble is pretty much sacrosanct. I don't need a permit to hold a political meeting in my living room.
posted by mr_roboto at 1:04 PM on October 2, 2002


Permits are - in theory - there to determine the "means and manner" of a protest. The problem is, it's a very fuzzy line, since it becomes tempting, easy, probably even inevitable for technicalities to be used to deny unpopular speech.
posted by nick.a at 1:13 PM on October 2, 2002


The police officers' conduct does not seem to me to be that harsh - just inept and inefficient. Part of the problem is that they just don't know how to handle any type of protest; probably because we don't do much protesting in the States.

This happened in DC where there are numerous protests. This wasn't the case of a few inept police officers not having proper training. This was a case of the higher-ups deciding that their strategy would be to round up and arrest everyone in the area.
posted by gluechunk at 1:15 PM on October 2, 2002


I bow to mr_roboto. I stand corrected.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 1:19 PM on October 2, 2002


One important point everyone is missing is that there is a huge difference between being arrested and being convicted. The standards for a lawful arrest are significantly lower than the standards required to be convicted of a crime. Those of you who are complaining that "these people were arrested even though they didn't break any laws" are off base. Police often don't know for sure whether a particular person has, in fact, broken a law. However, if there is "probable cause" to believe a crime has been committed, an arrest can be made: "Probable cause to arrest may have existed at the time of the arrest, even if the police later turn out to be wrong. Put differently, an arrest is valid if it is based on probable cause, even if the arrested person is innocent. In this situation, probable cause protects the police against a civil suit for false arrest if the charges are later dismissed or the defendant is acquitted at trial."

It is quite possible that the simple fact of being physically located in the middle of a group of people that is plainly committing crimes constitutes "probable cause" that any one person -- or all such people -- are committing crimes. It would be far too burdensome to require police to make an initial determination -- on the spot -- whether each person in fact committed the crime "beyond a reasonable doubt." That's what judges and juries are for.
posted by pardonyou? at 1:42 PM on October 2, 2002


Welcome to the real world, folks; the one that demonstrators of all stripes; civil rights, anti-war, and yes, even anti-abortion; have known about for many years. It's the job of police to preserve order. Sometimes they tend to get carried away with their job, but don't we all? When you choose to demonstrate, you have to take your lumps. At least in America, they don't just disappear us or roll the tanks over our bodies. Your best bet is to have cameras around you as much as possible.

I've been gassed, beaten, and arrested on more than one occasion; sometimes for good causes, sometimes for foolish. Pick the ditch you choose to die in carefully, and good luck out there.
posted by norm29 at 2:01 PM on October 2, 2002


I arrived at the protest after the cops surrounded those in Pershing Park and before they were were loaded onto the metro buses. I hung around with my camera, hoping to see some cops busting heads, but the protestors wimped out on their part of the bargain.
First off, the reporters should have gotten journalist credentials if they didn't want to be arrested. The cops let those go inside the circle who had credentials to be journalists or observers for the lawyers guild. The Maryland reporters can go to court and get acquittals.
Secondly, the protestors gave me the impression they were a bunch of spoiled suburbians going to college on their parents' credit cards. Generally, the cops were well behaved. So were the protestors. The cops outsmarted the protestors and made them play the game on their playing field. I suspect the police gave the order to disperse rather quietly, and when no one responded, they encircled them, detained them and arrested them. The protestors were smart enough not to try to rush the cops or anything when they were encircled. But they were dumb enough to be trapped.
You've got to expect the cops are going to have something planned when protestors announce for months in advance they were going to shut down the city.
posted by stevefromsparks at 2:14 PM on October 2, 2002


actually, ned, to use the word "bussed" in this sense is equally correct as using "bused"; at least according to webster's (ok, it's not the OED, but close enough.)

FF: True, Webster's accepts "bussing," but not as preferred spelling. AP Styleclearly differentiates the two, insisting that "bus, buses" refers to transportation vehicles, while "buss, busses" refers to smooches.
posted by NedKoppel at 2:28 PM on October 2, 2002


Bring back the draft!
posted by Postroad at 2:57 PM on October 2, 2002


I think it's a bit silly for people to complain about the lack of efficiency in processing the arrested. Oh sure, it would be nice to get arrested with a few thousand other people and get in and get out of the process, but that ain't gonna happen. I'm sure there would be a lot more efficiency going on if D.C. were used to arresting a few thousand people every weekend. But it's just hip to bash cops whenever they try and do their job.

I mean c'mon. This whole protest was basically (and thankfully) a non-event, yet people are still finding ways to bitch about the behavior of the authorities. Imagine what would have happened if the protest got out of hand and few skulls had to be knocked around.
posted by Witty at 3:41 PM on October 2, 2002


When I read about this horriffic abuse of civil rights, not only did the fire of righteous indignation rise in my chest but also gales of laughter as well.

I mean, can you imagine having to undergo this hideous brutality:

"To add to the torture, officers outside the bus were drinking Gatorade and eating cookies. "
posted by hama7 at 8:09 PM on October 2, 2002


These protests are all about cops versus youthfull idealists and never about anything of substance. Look at this thread, look at what everyone gets riled up about. Cops.. who cares how cops behave, is this some great revelation or are we back to the 1960s battle of the classes of working class police versus middle-class college kids.
posted by stbalbach at 8:16 PM on October 2, 2002


stevefromsparks: The cops outsmarted the protestors and made them play the game on their playing field. I suspect the police gave the order to disperse rather quietly, and when no one responded, they encircled them, detained them and arrested them. The protestors were smart enough not to try to rush the cops or anything when they were encircled. But they were dumb enough to be trapped.

So then, this is how you want the police to act? To "outsmart" the protesters? Perhaps we can give them official Blue Meanie badges as well. Brilliant political theory, you evanizerwit.

Witty: Imagine what would have happened if the protest got out of hand and few skulls had to be knocked around.

I imagine the same cast of the Let's-Fellate-A-Cop! show would still be here, telling us then how disappearing political dissidents or death squads were probably just something the protesters "deserved", or in the bests interest of something, they're sure. Seriously: please point me to one post at MeFi where Steve_at_Linwood or evanizer or MidasMulligan or hama7 or any of these assclowns stood up for the "little guy", stood up for principles of civil liberties and freedom that weren't personally beneficial to their own wallets or genitals. Maybe such posts exist. But finding them among the clutter could be another matter entirely.
posted by hincandenza at 12:12 AM on October 3, 2002


disappearing political dissidents or death squads

Sorry, I thought this was a rowdy protest against the IMF. Oh it was? Gosh, if the kids don't get their cookies and milk and an afternoon nap, they sure can get grouchy.

Sorry to disappoint you, hicadenza, but death squads, this ain't. This is like a high school student getting after-school detention and screaming "Attica!" or "Fuck da police!". It's a complete charade, but is also (luckily) very funny.

Brilliant political theory, you evanizerwit.

I think you have coined a new term, sir. Unfortunately, you seem to have prefaced it with probably the closest thing most Americans will ever come to a police state (thankfully): an animated Beatles project from 1968, the year of the summer of love. Peace, baby.

I have a lot of respect for public servants, especially policemen and firemen, because they have always helped me when I needed help the most, not because they are just nice guys, (though many are) but because it's their duty.

These baloney-sandwich-complainers might do well to consider exactly why police action was necessary, other than to boost their sense of "being oppressed by the man", and posting tales of being "tortured" by not being allowed to drink Gatorade and eat cookies!

please point me to one post at MeFi where Steve_at_Linwood or evanizer or MidasMulligan or hama7 or any of these assclowns..

Assclowns?? Good gracious! Ah well, being in good company takes the sting away a little.
posted by hama7 at 12:50 AM on October 3, 2002


I have a lot of respect for public servants

Off topic: (And of course, I have the utmost respect for perhaps the greatest defenders of American liberty, freedom, and safety: the United States Military.)
posted by hama7 at 1:03 AM on October 3, 2002


I don't know what to say, that so many of you are opposed to the exercising of being born into land of civil rights. I've heard it time and again, the fact that these protesters had "daddy's credit card", were "Amazing Grace singing uber-priviledged college kids" etc. What ludicrous charges.

Who issues and pays the delegates of the IMF tab? Who's at the table determining the future of countless voiceless humans? Who's running the show? Uber-indeed. To call one out using the dodgy stereotype, the ego-imputed personalities and ambitions of your own flaws has serious flaws itself. Let me call you out on them.

Who precisely are you defending when the great guffaw overtakes the echochamber after the pundit has his way sans opposing viewpoints? Who's ill procured wealth are you defending? Taking your eye off the pea guys? What hypocrites you are Steveatlinwood, stevefromsparks, Hama7, witty etc. What hypocrites. You have all the riddles, the punchlines, the put downs, but no fucking ideas of your own. None. Authority authority authority. Yet that very authority is "equally" as guilty of having access to the wealth your little punchlines of half baked sardoncism have. Buzz zip? Get it? You're faulting the protesting of a very fascist system of governing a powder keg of a world, faulting the protesters for having a piece of the pie they currently are protesting, because you don't yourselves have it, but they, the protesters do, though they concurrently protest via the ease at which they can because of their upper-class status. (as if it were true)

I'll never understand how you people can, gratis, defend that which is destroying your children's world.
posted by crasspastor at 1:43 AM on October 3, 2002


I really am the last person in the world to sympathise with anti-capitalists. For crying out loud I'm a Conservative voting, pro-fox hunting free trade advocate. And even I think the police's behaviour here was unduly harsh. To arrest people en masse without real grounds for so long is completely ridiculous.

In Britain if the police refused access to legal counsel for such a long period of time they would be in serious trouble, to the extent of seriously undermining any charges and opening themselves to liability.
posted by prentiz at 1:46 AM on October 3, 2002


but no fucking ideas of your own. None. Authority authority authority. Et cetera.

I hear you crasspastor, but this is really nothing to get all riled up about. Some sweaty patchouli-reeking students crying "wolf!" does not a protest make.

You're faulting the protesting of a very fascist system of governing a powder keg of a world, faulting the protesters for having a piece of the pie they currently are protesting

I would like to invite you to look into actual fascism. To call the legal and humane actions of a police force, who acted to protect citizens from harm "fascist" is at best irresponsible, and at worst, asinine. Nobody has suggested taking away the students' rights to peaceful protest, except you.

Here's an account of the activities.

An unsurprising excerpt:

WASHINGTON, Sept. 27 - After hanging subversive banners off bridges, throwing "dance parties" in the street and disrupting the District's daily flow, a group of about 12 university students was encircled and arrested along with more than 600 others in Pershing Park for banging drums and dining hall trays and singing.

Let's just call it what it is: bullshit.
posted by hama7 at 2:51 AM on October 3, 2002


Here's an account of the activities.
posted by hama7 at 2:53 AM on October 3, 2002


After hanging subversive banners off bridges, throwing "dance parties" in the street and disrupting the District's daily flow, a group of about 12 university students was encircled and arrested along with more than 600 others in Pershing Park for banging drums and dining hall trays and singing.
Damn! these people were really dangerous. I'm surprised that the police didn't shoot these homicidal maniacs. Well maybe next time, right? And I'm sure that it is a sign of democracy at its best when the police arrest anyone in the vicinity of people dancing in the street. As for the stereotypes of the protesters let me point out this illuminating paragraph from the posted article:
Among the other unorthodox activities on-board was a civil wedding ceremony, performed by Edward Burns, a protester who had been with the university group. The bride was given away by her father, Joe Mayer, a 69-year old retired Army lieutenant colonel and lawyer who was also arrested. [Emphasis mine]
posted by talos at 4:15 AM on October 3, 2002


Thank you crasspastor... and to those directly and indirectly addressed in that eloquent statement, how about a little teeny bit (at the very least) of actual dialogue concerning the injustices being protested. We have had a very nice and funny long bit of spatting about the protestors themselves and the cops and everyone's outfits, how they smell and what they like to eat. Now, how about some actual thought about what they were saying? How about paying some attention to the rich and powerful players who's presence was the reason for this shindig? Is it right that they control fates around the world through a non-representative and highly secretive organization? If it is not right, what can we do to change this situation?
posted by dorcas at 7:12 AM on October 3, 2002


Sorry, I thought this was a rowdy protest against the IMF. Oh it was? Gosh, if the kids don't get their cookies and milk and an afternoon nap, they sure can get grouchy.

Sorry to disappoint you, hicadenza, but death squads, this ain't.


Wow, way to selectively quote and misrepresent! Witty specifically said "Imagine if ... a few skulls had to be knocked around", and I extended the hypothetical to suggest that even if anti-protest police activity was escalated to the point of death squads et al, people like yourself would still find a way to defend the police action in defense of the powerful (see crasspastor's post). Hell, when the US supports death squads with military equipment and training, plenty of authority-loving chickenhawks extol their "Freedom Fighter" virtues.
posted by hincandenza at 8:15 AM on October 3, 2002


hincandenza: Assclown yourself... prick.

You have all the riddles, the punchlines, the put downs, but no fucking ideas of your own. None.

crasspastor: What are you talking about? And what do you know about me and my ideas anyway? This thread isn't about the World Bank, the IMF or the issues. That goes for you too dorcas. This is about how the protestors were treated and how the cops handled everything.

We assclowns feel that the cops handled the situation well and the protestors are whining without a leg to stand on. The rest of you feel differently. If you want to discuss the policies of the World Bank, then I suggest you find another thread.
posted by Witty at 9:45 AM on October 3, 2002


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