Liberty Activist Blog

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

As the First Amendment dies in Boston, not with a bang but a whimper ....

Lots of rage about cage
Boston Herald

"Protests and marches around the city again yielded no major incidents or arrests while activists and some politicians continued to lambaste the 'protest pen.' .... Boston police reported no incidents yesterday. There have been just two protest-related arrests. Some activists say the staggering security and the cage have stifled demonstrations. Bill Dobbs, spokesman for United for Justice and Peace, said the tight DNC security is similar to measures at the G8 Summit in Savannah, Ga., last month that were blamed for low activist turnout. 'No one has ever seen a protest cage like the one in Boston,' Dobbs said. 'It's outrageous. It's part of a trend to turn the screws on the right to dissent.'" (07/28/04)

Activists to cops: Stop picking on us
Boston Herald

"Peace activists say the FBI has been harassing and intimidating them with visits across the country, including an incident in Boston Saturday where federal agents, police and firefighters searched a ``mobile kitchen'' and seized five propane tanks. 'It's a problem because people are being targeted specifically because they are against the Democrats and the Republicans,' said Rachael Perrotta of Chicago, who is in Boston with Democracy Uprising, a group behind the DNC2RNC march from Boston to New York that begins Friday." (07/28/04)

Pen has ‘antis’ up in arms
Boston Herald

"Hundreds of anti-war protesters filed into the controversial ``protest pen'' across from the FleetCenter sparking some tense standoffs during angry opposition to the prison-like set-up. 'This is really a joke. It's disgusting,' said 22-year-old student Nick Pelletier as he stood in the enclosed 'free speech zone.' Some protesters kicked iron riot fencing blocking Causeway Street and refused to enter the 'cage' before being escorted away by police.No arrests were reported. .... Boston police Superintendent Robert Dunford, who developed the plan for handling protesters, dismissed criticism of the cage. 'They are closer to the delegates than they have ever been at any national convention,' Dunford said. 'They can demonstrate any place in the city they want as long as they do it legally and peacefully. This area is just set aside so they have direct access to the delegates.'" (07/28/04)

Washington delegates protest convention 'free speech zone'
Seattle Post-Intelligencer

"Led by Seattle-area residents, about a dozen delegates to the Democratic National Convention went to the protest area Wednesday to vent their outrage over the dismal, fenced-in "free speech zone" for protesters. .... "This protest pen is not in our name," said delegate Sylvia Olveda, 27, of Bellevue, Wash. "These people are peaceful. I'm not afraid of these people - they don't need razor wire." Wednesday afternoon, the area was occupied only by a cluster of Christian evangelists and a couple of individual protesters. The stage had plastered to it a rain-soaked page from the Bible: Luke 23:24, "Then Jesus said Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." On the side of the podium, someone scribbled "Flee the pen" in chalk." (07/28/04)


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