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Police Brutality at Jefferson Memorial in D.C.

This is a discussion on Police Brutality at Jefferson Memorial in D.C. within the Politics forums, part of the Main Category category; Adam Kokesh is an interesting character. He's an Iraq War veteran and a commentator for the news program "RT" (Russia ...

  1. #11
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    Adam Kokesh is an interesting character. He's an Iraq War veteran and a commentator for the news program "RT" (Russia Today). If you watch many of his videos, he exposes and ridicules as much "libtardism" as he engages in, but much of his commentary and activism has a leftist bent to it to be sure.

    And then there's that couple that's kissing....Medea Benjamin and her lapdog. I actually participated in an argument with them at the protest in March '10 trying to convince the House not to pass ObamaCare. Man, I wish I had a tape of that. They are true believers, that's for sure. Kokesh, I'm not so sure about though. He is anti-war, so he welcomes anyone else who is also, and that's why he associates with Benjamin and Code Pink and other just-as-despicable-Americans, but he's generally conservative. It was no accident that they chose the Jefferson Memorial to challenge the quashing of 1st Amendment rights. I honestly believe that Jefferson would spin in his grave if he knew that his memorial was the venue for silencing government dissent. I don't know what they were protesting that day, but I don't care either. Dissent against the government is exactly what Jefferson's creation, The Constitution, was the embodiment of. The protest was quiet. All they were doing was paying homage to Jefferson's legacy by "dancing" (if you can really call it that), celebrating the right of dissent that his genius bequeathed them. The cops coming in and making them stop was a much bigger intrusion on the tourists than the "dancers" were. They closed the memorial because of it fer cryin' out loud! Forget the body-slam, the intrusion in these citizens' rights of peaceable assembly and protest of their government is a much greater injury than Kokesh being body-slammed, and I know without a doubt that even Adam Kokesh would agree with that.

    Bottom line, there's no such thing as "government property" in a country whose government is of The People, by The People, and for The People. It's The People's property, plain and simple. If the Jefferson Memorial is not The People's property, then no place is. I'm a conservative because of Thomas Jefferson. He created that which I am willing to fight to preserve, and I'll fight to preserve it for liberals just as aggressively as I'll fight to preserve it for fellow conservatives, because if it doesn't protect their rights, then it doesn't protect mine or anyone else's rights either.

    Blues
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    This is why I could never be a LEO as I would probably tazed the whole bunch before handcuffing them. I saw nothing in the video that approached brutality but I did see a bunch of people intentionally antagonizing the police and for no reason other than trying to be a bunch of buttholes. As others said people make plans and spend lots of money in order to see the memorials and other sights in DC and are denied the right to peacefully see them by protesters just out to grab attention to themselves.

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    I thought the police handles this in a very professional manner. I doubt that I would have been so lenient when they didn't listen the first time I asked nicely.
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Outlaw:298286
    Anyone who is stupid enough to wear a code pink t-shirt and supports LibTardism probably deserves to be arrested i.m.o.
    Just knew that whole Constitution thing was not for everyone.
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    Quote Originally Posted by BluesStringer View Post
    Adam Kokesh is an interesting character. He's an Iraq War veteran and a commentator for the news program "RT" (Russia Today). If you watch many of his videos, he exposes and ridicules as much "libtardism" as he engages in, but much of his commentary and activism has a leftist bent to it to be sure.

    And then there's that couple that's kissing....Medea Benjamin and her lapdog. I actually participated in an argument with them at the protest in March '10 trying to convince the House not to pass ObamaCare. Man, I wish I had a tape of that. They are true believers, that's for sure. Kokesh, I'm not so sure about though. He is anti-war, so he welcomes anyone else who is also, and that's why he associates with Benjamin and Code Pink and other just-as-despicable-Americans, but he's generally conservative. It was no accident that they chose the Jefferson Memorial to challenge the quashing of 1st Amendment rights. I honestly believe that Jefferson would spin in his grave if he knew that his memorial was the venue for silencing government dissent. I don't know what they were protesting that day, but I don't care either. Dissent against the government is exactly what Jefferson's creation, The Constitution, was the embodiment of. The protest was quiet. All they were doing was paying homage to Jefferson's legacy by "dancing" (if you can really call it that), celebrating the right of dissent that his genius bequeathed them. The cops coming in and making them stop was a much bigger intrusion on the tourists than the "dancers" were. They closed the memorial because of it fer cryin' out loud! Forget the body-slam, the intrusion in these citizens' rights of peaceable assembly and protest of their government is a much greater injury than Kokesh being body-slammed, and I know without a doubt that even Adam Kokesh would agree with that.

    Bottom line, there's no such thing as "government property" in a country whose government is of The People, by The People, and for The People. It's The People's property, plain and simple. If the Jefferson Memorial is not The People's property, then no place is. I'm a conservative because of Thomas Jefferson. He created that which I am willing to fight to preserve, and I'll fight to preserve it for liberals just as aggressively as I'll fight to preserve it for fellow conservatives, because if it doesn't protect their rights, then it doesn't protect mine or anyone else's rights either.

    Blues
    Blues: I generally agree with most of what you have to say but, this time, I have to disagree with you. The First Amendment does give the right for peaceful assembly and no one would deny that right, even to a--holes like this group. To me, the main difference is that they are doing their protesting inside the monument where visitors have come from all over the country to see. This is a national monument for us all. We don't expect to visit this place and have demonstrators ricocheting around all over the place. If they want to demonstrate, let them do it outside the monument where they can dance or whatever to their heart's content. After all, the rest of us have rights too but they don't seem to matter to this group of idiots.

    Kokesh, Code Pink and other organizations give an outlet for otherwise insignificant people to gain their fifteen minutes of fame. If they are serious about their causes, let them act responsibly and maturely rather than act like a bunch of unruly kids. Whatever their issue, if they can't express themselves in an adult manner, they will not get far in their endeavors. I would be more open to serious debate about their issues if presented on an intellectual level and I imagine most others would also.

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    I guess my response would stand on what the regulations are regarding acceptable behavior in a National Park location. I do believe there are regulations against commercial advertising within park boundaries. And to stretch a bit, if you are protesting, you are advertising your point of view.

    I'm not sure how the Park Police drew a connection between dancing and demonstration. Although those two should have been arrested by the "dance police".

    I find it annoying that any group of people thinks it is okay for them to inconvenience everyone around them so that they can press their agenda, generally on people that really could care less about what they have to say. But that is what the freedom of speech is all about.
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    I don't know what happened before the video, if it was somehow vulgar of offensive, but the random people who just jumped in and started dancing, to me, shows exactly the kind of nonviolent protesting that shaped this country. I'm sure there were people who thought the earliest promoters of black, women's and civil rights were snotty upstarts, too. I think the best thing the police could have done was just leave them alone. Wary looks from passersby is much more effective than pulling a power play. Besides, a cop saying "You'll find out" what you're being arrested for, I'm pretty sure, isn't legal.

    I may not agree with what you have to say, but I will fight for your right to say it.
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    Oldgrunt, you may or may not know this, and may or may not care, but that protest was thrown together in "flash mob" fashion via FaceBook in response to a city ordinance passed earlier that same week prohibiting dancing at the Jefferson Memorial specifically (it did not mention other memorials, like the Viet Nam Memorial or WWII Memorial), not because it would disrupt the tourists' enjoyment of the venue, but because the local government divined out of thin air that dancing failed to honor the man being memorialized in a way that Thomas Jefferson himself wanted to be remembered. Now, no matter what you think of the appropriateness of the venue or the method of protest, you have to admit that a city ordinance which relies on the imagined wishes of a man 200 years gone for its justification is patently absurd. Ridiculous laws should always attract equally ridiculous demonstrations if for no other reason than to illustrate the law's absurdity by being absurd. It works as an illustrative tool. If you care to, you can hear Kokesh's rationale and the-day-after-the-incident reaction in this RT video interview.

    Beyond the details of that specific demonstration though, I'm interested in this idea that tourists seeking quiet, perhaps reverent reflection in some government-controlled venue trumps any other citizen's rights as delineated in the Bill of Rights. By that rationale, the tourists' interests could have been used to kick me and about 100,000 of my closest friends off the Mall and move us out of sight of tourists visiting the Capitol Building, the Reflecting Pool and the Washington Monument on the weekend that ObamaCare was passed and we protested, not by dancing or remaining quiet, but by getting in Congress-critters' faces and yelling at the top of our lungs, "Kill the bill! Kill the bill!" La Raza held a counter-protest at the Washington Monument, and they marched through and around the thick of our numbers. We ignored them. It's called freedom. It's called right of assembly. It's the only way that The People have to legally get their so-called representatives' undivided attention, but it only works to that end if the numbers are huge like they were in March of '10, or if smaller groups use the propaganda value of events like the Jefferson Memorial dance party through whatever limited means they have, like YouTube and RT's shows.

    Of course you are perfectly entitled to continue to disagree with me on this point, but just as Kokesh et al found it absurd of the city government to issue a prior restraint law of a form of expression to protest the government, I find it equally absurd to believe that the man who authored the words which acknowledge the source of and protect our rights of free expression wouldn't be appalled at how bastardized his words have become if physical force by government agents can be thought legal and justified in quashing expressions of dissent at the feet of the statue which bears his likeness. It seems a blatant oxymoron to me.

    Blues

    ETA response to localgirl:

    Quote Originally Posted by localgirl View Post
    I don't know what happened before the video, if it was somehow vulgar of offensive, but the random people who just jumped in and started dancing, to me, shows exactly the kind of nonviolent protesting that shaped this country. I'm sure there were people who thought the earliest promoters of black, women's and civil rights were snotty upstarts, too. I think the best thing the police could have done was just leave them alone. Wary looks from passersby is much more effective than pulling a power play. Besides, a cop saying "You'll find out" what you're being arrested for, I'm pretty sure, isn't legal.

    I may not agree with what you have to say, but I will fight for your right to say it.
    As a matter of fact, the group held a slightly larger protest the following weekend. No arrests were made, and there's only sparse coverage of it available at either RT, Kokesh's channel or various websites, or anywhere else that I've been able to find. You're absolutely right, it would've been a non-story altogether if the cops had just left them alone.
    I pray for peace. Peace and justice. If we can't have both, I choose justice.

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    Blues: As I said before, I am an old curmudgeon and these "flashmobs" and other antics just go against the grain with me. I don't mind people protesting but I just don't think monuments, etc. are the right place and especially when it disturbs the rights of others. What if a group like that were to protest and dance on the graves at Arlington? The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier? Or some of the Civil War monuments in Pennsylvania or Mississippi? That may seem extreme to you but there is no difference to me. In either of those cases, I would want the police to clear the area in whatever manner necessary and feel that quite a number of people would help the police very gladly.

    I watched the RT video and personally think that kid is full of mud. The latest rage is to fight the government in everything one just doesn't happen to like. Are we moving toward anarchy? Just do one's thing and to hell with everyone else? Nope. Sorry. I just can't buy that but, as long as they don't bother me, we will get along. With all the rights these people are espousing comes responsibility too. They don't act very responsible to me. Anyway, no hard feelings here....have a good day.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Oldgrunt View Post
    Blues: As I said before, I am an old curmudgeon and these "flashmobs" and other antics just go against the grain with me. I don't mind people protesting but I just don't think monuments, etc. are the right place and especially when it disturbs the rights of others. What if a group like that were to protest and dance on the graves at Arlington? The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier? Or some of the Civil War monuments in Pennsylvania or Mississippi? That may seem extreme to you but there is no difference to me. In either of those cases, I would want the police to clear the area in whatever manner necessary and feel that quite a number of people would help the police very gladly.

    I watched the RT video and personally think that kid is full of mud. The latest rage is to fight the government in everything one just doesn't happen to like. Are we moving toward anarchy? Just do one's thing and to hell with everyone else? Nope. Sorry. I just can't buy that but, as long as they don't bother me, we will get along. With all the rights these people are espousing comes reaponsibility too. They don't act very responsible to me. Anyway, no hard feelings here....have a good day.
    I can't imagine having hard feelings over trivial disagreements with you, Oldgrunt. That's definitely not an issue here.

    I find it interesting that you mention dancing on graves of fallen soldiers, or protesting at Civil War (I prefer the moniker of The War of Northern Aggression myself) sites. Lincoln's federal government was the first to suspend the Constitution. Freedom was suspended in both the North and the South at the whim of a President. Freedom to demonstrate against that same federal government at such sites seems a fitting irony to me. It even rises to the level of poetic justice as far as I'm concerned.

    I can draw the line at literally dancing on graves. That's different. But I believe the .fedgov has been dancing on the South's grave for 150 years now. The laws that were forced down our throats during reconstruction are mostly still in effect today. You live in Alabama. Have you ever looked into the anti-militia laws here? Can you conceive of a reason why Bama would make participation in a citizen militia illegal on their own? Of course not. It was one among many repressive laws that came out of reconstruction, forced on a defeated and starved people by the emerging totalitarian .fedgov.

    In any case, the Jefferson Memorial is not entitled to the same level of reverence as a grave site. It's not the same thing at all.

    I think the monuments and memorials that I mentioned previously are more analogous to the dance party thing, and I think my personal involvement in demonstrating for causes I believe in necessarily means we will have different perspectives on protesting in general. I've been a 2nd Amendment activist for well over 25 years, and have traveled to DC many times to lend my body and voice to combine with others in the belief that numbers are what makes the difference in many cases. I have also been a FairTax activist for over 10 years, and have demonstrated often seeking support for tax reform. I am an original organizer for the local Tea Party group, with whom I am very frustrated over their collective inaction since the first rally, which was highly successful, on April 15, 2009. That rally was instrumental in ousting and replacing the leftist, RINO congress-critter we had at the time with an above-average, reliably conservative public servant. Since then though, it's hard to get 20 people to show up for an event. Activism is not a spectator sport. It's like muscle and brain matter; use it or lose it, so I do my best to use whatever stamina and motivation I have left for all three.

    I find it rather an overstatement to compare those people dancing to outright anarchy. I think a law outlawing dancing is indicative of the notion that we're much closer to totalitarianism than we are to anarchy, and I think people willing to stand against it are worthy of tolerance at the very least, even if not praise. I have no respect for Medea Benjamin or her ilk, and didn't treat them with respect when I argued with her and that whack-job she hangs with all the time, but I cannot find it within myself to consider my right to be in a particular place for the purposes of my own political expression to trump her right to be there for her own. We're talking about one day that would've dissolved into the ethos of nothingness if the cops hadn't made such a spectacle for all the cameras, as evidenced by the exact same method of protesting being organized just a week later, with no arrests, and no one except those like me who obsessively follow a story to the bitter end have ever heard about.

    If I had been a tourist there on either of those days, like I have been many times before, I would've thought, "Oh, look, people doing exactly what ol' Tom Jefferson both did himself and fought for all of his public life to protect for us to do 225 years later." I would've shrugged my shoulders if the subject matter didn't interest me, or engaged the protestors if it did, whether it was to engage with support or opposition. I honestly believe that would've been the grandest tribute one could pay to the memory of Thomas Jefferson. Political engagement between free people. That is the essence of what Jefferson represents to me.

    Blues
    I pray for peace. Peace and justice. If we can't have both, I choose justice.

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