Town Hall Mettings turn violent
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Thread: Town Hall Mettings turn violent

  1. #1
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    Exclamation Town Hall Mettings turn violent

    By WILLIAM MARCH | The Tampa Tribune
    Protests, passions roiling town hall meeting on health care
    Published: August 6, 2009

    Updated: 08/06/2009 09:55 pm

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    What was intended to be a town hall discussion on President Barack Obama's health care reform proposal dissolved into a shouting match with shoving and scuffles in Ybor City tonight.

    The event brought home to Tampa the recent phenomenon of angry opponents of Obama's proposal disrupting town hall meetings by Democratic members of Congress during the August recess.

    This meeting was organized by Democratic state Rep. Betty Reed but was to include comments on the proposal by U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor, a strong supporter.

    Castor tried to speak for nearly 15 minutes but the crowd drowned her out, chanting, "You work for us,'' "Tyranny, tyranny,'' and "Read the bill." She ultimately left the meeting early, further angering some attendees.

    The problems began when a crowd of around 500, many of them recruited to attend by interest groups both for and against the proposal, sought to enter the meeting room. The room, in the offices of the Hillsborough County Children's Board on East Palm Avenue, has a capacity of only about 250.

    Several hundred people, mostly opponents, wound up outside or packing a hallway leading into the meeting room. Some scuffled with members of the sponsoring groups who manned the doorway.

    One man who said he was injured and intended to file a police complaint, Randy Arthur of Oldsmar, was outside the meeting room with his wife, Kathy Arthur, when organizers tried to close the doors.

    She said he was slammed against a wall. He later talked to police officers, his knit shirt ripped and a few scratches visible on his chest.

    Among the crowd outside, opponents and a smaller number of proponents got into occasional shouting matches.

    After trying to speak, Castor left at about 6:40 p.m., taking jeers as she left.

    "They're hiding from their constituents. She works for us and needs to listen,'' said Karen Jaroch, a Tampa homemaker and organizer for the 9-12 Project, set up by TV commentator Glenn Beck, which had recruited its members to attend.

    Castor spokeswoman Ellen Gedalius said Castor left because her part of the event was finished.

    "We said all along our role was to come and give an update on the bill in Congress,'' Gedalius said, noting that Reed, not Castor, organized and sponsored the meeting. "That's what Betty Reed asked us to do and that's what we did.''

    But Reed said afterward that she encouraged Castor to leave because, "She couldn't get a word through."

    Gedalius noted that Castor will have a town hall meeting by telephone on Aug. 13 and that her office has been receiving hundreds of comments on the health care issue.

    The meeting was organized by Reed plus the Service Employees International Union, other unions and Organizing for America, a liberal group that grew out of the Obama presidential campaign.

    Some opponents accused the organizers of trying to stack the crowd by allowing early admission to those on their side. Reed denied that, saying those admitted early were organizers setting up the room.

    In any case, opponents appeared to outnumber proponents both inside and outside.

    After doors to the meeting room closed, some of those outside crowded around the windows of the meeting room, where they held up signs and chanted.

    In the last week or so, similar disruptive protests have erupted at town hall meetings in several states.

    Democrats, including White House spokesman Robert Gibbs, have said the disruptions were organized attacks aimed at Democrats by conservative, anti-health care reform interest groups. Several protestors at Thursday's meeting in Tampa angrily rejected that contention.

    Castor's staff said Reed planned the meeting and invited Castor before the controversy became so heated.

    Reed said she set up the meeting because, "I represent a number of people who ask questions about what's going on with health care, so I thought it would be good to put on a meeting and have the congresswoman come in and give an update."

    Reed said she was shocked by the number of people who turned out and some of their reactions.

    "When you get to the point of possible violence, you've gone over the edge," she said.

    In a news conference prior to the town hall, Castor had said, "I do expect some rabble-rousing."

    She said the protesters who have been appearing at town hall forums on health care "would have been protesting Medicare they would never have accepted Social Security."

    Tampa police spokeswoman Andrea Davis said the department was told a couple hundred people would show up and sent a squad of 10-15 officers, two marked cars, two supervisors and some undercover officers.

    As the crowd grew, more were brought in mainly for traffic control, she said, but they also broke up some scuffles.

    She said no arrests were made.
    FESTUS
    IN OMNIA PARATUS

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  3. #2
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    Exclamation Union thugs turned loose!!!

    FESTUS
    IN OMNIA PARATUS

  4. #3
    FREE SPEECH!!! No matter how hard they try they WILL NEVER TAKE AWAY THE VOICE OF THE PEOPLE.

    THEY MAY TAKE OUR LIVES BUT THEY'LL NEVER TAKE OUR FREEDOM!!!!!

  5. #4
    How can one of use Civs get a copy of the health care bill? I need a site that would have it on it. Like a Government site so when asked i can tell them what site i got it from. The problem I'm having is any time i try and talk to the jackasses in office in my state. I get well what site did you get it from? Then i get well this and well that. So if i can find the bill at a Government run site i think that will shut the staffers up enough so they WILL HEAR ME. I asked he the ass in office supported the health care bill and i was told yes. But on follow up when asked why? They could not tell me anything other then "He thinks it needs to be done".

    THEY MAY TAKE OUR LIVES BUT THEY'LL NEVER TAKE OUR FREEDOM!!!!!

  6. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by S&WM&P40 View Post
    FREE SPEECH!!! No matter how hard they try they WILL NEVER TAKE AWAY THE VOICE OF THE PEOPLE.
    The problem is.. That is exactly what the audience is doing, taking away the voice of the people..This is NOT the voice of the PEOPLE..
    Lobbyist, who are supported by the rich and the big corporations, are sending bus loads of paid people to go in and disrupt these meetings.. So instead of the "voice of the people" you have the "Voice of the Corporations in sheep's clothing"

    It's hard enough to get our representatives to talk to us, and this is only going to make them shut down and do whatever it is they are going to do anywayz.. IF there was a "real" discussion of ideas, then something good might come out of these town hall meetings.. This will only cause a bigger separation between our representatives and "we the people".

    This is part of what's wrong with America today.. Nobody wants to sit down and really discuss ideas.. Everyone has their own opinion based on background, the way they were raised, what they read, experiences, etc.. If there was a real discussion, real solutions might actually get done.. But everybody wants to just scream their point and not acknowledge that there may be other valid points even contrary to what they think and believe that could be accounted for in the solution..

    When did America become so RUDE.. Arrogant.. Ignorant???

    You are Right .. Free Speech.. But the idea about free speech is to be able to discuss IDEAS without getting in trouble by anyone. Free speech is supposed to be "For the people".. In this situation, the free speech is being squashed by the Corporate Speech, which I don't give a crap about Corporate Speech.. The People are supposed to have the voice, but only rich people and Corporations have a voice in this country and these stunts that are being perpetrated is only squelching the peoples voices even more, not promoting it..

    Wake up.. What is going on is NOT a good thing.. it is taking away YOUR voice.. we the PEOPLE.. All People.. Each voice, spoken, respected, and heard.. Opposed to we the Corporations supported by the rich people, know what's better for you and will decide for you..

    Don't be one of the sheep with the corporations telling you when, and how high to jump!!!

    Gulf Coast, Floriduh
    Sccy is the limit

  7. #6

    PDF of Health Care Legislation

    Quote Originally Posted by S&WM&P40 View Post
    How can one of use Civs get a copy of the health care bill? I need a site that would have it on it. Like a Government site so when asked i can tell them what site i got it from. The problem I'm having is any time i try and talk to the jackasses in office in my state. I get well what site did you get it from? Then i get well this and well that. So if i can find the bill at a Government run site i think that will shut the staffers up enough so they WILL HEAR ME. I asked he the ass in office supported the health care bill and i was told yes. But on follow up when asked why? They could not tell me anything other then "He thinks it needs to be done".
    Here's a PDF of the America's Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009. This is the full text of the bill.


    http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-...3200ih.txt.pdf



    You can go to the Office of the Clerks website for the House and you can find the legislation there. That's where the link I posted came from.
    From my cold dead fingers will you take my freedom. And even then you will have to pry it out with a crowbar.

  8. The problem is 2 fold. 1. politics is an emotional issue, not a rational one. You cannot sway a person with logic and reason (even conservatives)
    2. The Democrats (the party as a whole, I am not speaking of any individual) win by playing to the emotions, they demonize their opponents, and attack the person, not the issue. When the average person speaks out against them, they call it a right wing, organized conspiracy, especially in the press. It works.

    I think the biggest problem we have in politics is most of our elected officials are lawyers. Lawyers tend to be good, civic minded people. However, the way they are trained to think is more for winning and negotiation, not for problem solving. They are not trained to find the most efficient solution like a technician or engineer. They are not trained to think in terms of black and white solutions, truth, they are trained to think in terms of grey, and to manipulate in order to support their position, right or wrong.
    From my discussions with friends and coworkers, liberals and conservatives (in my demographic) tend to be pretty close in what they want to happen. But in the politics, things get distorted and positions solidify.
    Even my liberal friends do not believe the government will run healthcare any better, and my conservative friends believe the current system is unsustainable and not a good one, in terms of costs. No one wants to see a child die because of a lack of an operation, or an old woman die on the street.
    Everyone I talk to agrees a person is responsible for themselves. No one thinks welfare, as it stands now, is a good program, but no one wants people to be homeless or starve either.
    The problem comes from lawyer-politicians who have to differentiate themselves from their opposition in order to keep their job. They make deals (our shools need funding, so I have to agree or we do not get the money), they add pork (because a new swimming pool will employ 25 people and bring a place for disadvantaged kids to play in the summer rather than joining gangs). It all makes sense, if you isolate each item, put it all together and it is a disaster!!!
    Fundementally, the real issue is one of philosophy. What is the role of government. Is it to take car of us, or provide the conditions to take of ourselves?
    You can have peace. Or you can have freedom. Don't ever count on having both at once.
    Robert A. Heinlein

  9. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Wolfling68 View Post
    The Democrats (the party as a whole, I am not speaking of any individual) win by playing to the emotions, they demonize their opponents, and attack the person, not the issue. When the average person speaks out against them, they call it a right wing, organized conspiracy, especially in the press.
    Not to take the thread in a new direction, but to make a point..
    It doesn't help when people rally behind -go nowhere issues- like the birther movement.. There is no way a black man running for president didn't have his credentials scrutinized early on in the race for the white house... So, there is no way they are going to remove the president on this issue.. So it just makes the anti Obama folks look like idiots, which they are being..
    IF I didn't know better, I would say the birther movement was started by the Democrats, I can't think of a better ploy they could have invented to make their opponents look like non-thinking, right wing, organized conspiracy, with no real threat at the core..
    Come on folks.. Let's move on to some real issues!!!

    Again.. Let's not discuss the Birther movement, but how best to have our individual voices heard and suppress the corporate $$$ voices!

    Gulf Coast, Floriduh
    Sccy is the limit

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