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Excerpt: "Increasingly around the country, noted civil liberties attorney Bill Quigley told Nieman Watchdog this summer, 'What we have had is a militarization of the police response to nonviolent demonstrations. You attend one of those rallies and you could get the impression that it's unpatriotic to protest, that you're doing something wrong, that you're some sort of security threat.'"

New York Police arrest a demonstrator on Day 7 of the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations, 09/23/11. (photo: Giles Clarke)
New York Police arrest a demonstrator on Day 7 of the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations, 09/23/11. (photo: Giles Clarke)

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Occupy Wall Street: Take the Bull by the Horns

 

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+16 # genierae 2011-10-09 08:44
This country is in deep trouble, and any change for the good of the people must come with great sacrifice. We are faced with an establishment that is determined to hold on to power AT ALL COSTS, and so the only way to prevail is to put our lives on the line time and time again, as long as it takes. There will be much bloodshed and grief, but if we will persist in our peaceful protests, we will overcome. This movement must have young people as its base, they have the energy and idealism needed to sustain it. But these young people should not ignore the wisdom of elders in their midst, and those of every age can contribute to the cause. The Occupy Wall Street protests are a good start, and I hope that they are serious about being there for the long haul. Great strength and indomitable courage will be absolutely essential.

"The salvation of the people depends upon themselves, upon their capacity for suffering and sacrifice." Gandhi
 
 
+11 # DaveM 2011-10-09 08:58
You probably know Abraham Maslow's famous observation: "If the only tool you have is a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail".

Perhaps the most telling thing in all of this is that, to my knowledge, the police have never arrived at a protest and ended up facing the sort of violence they arrive prepared to combat. I supposed if they were called out to deal with a platoon of Marines attacking a neighborhood, all that sort of gear might be appropriate. That of course has never happened. Nor, to my knowledge, has any police force ever faced guns or other weapons at any of the more publicized protest rallies, including those where hundreds were arrested.

My greatest fear is that this will lead to a terrible backlash triggered by some small group of extremists. Never mind whether from the left or the right--we have them both, as does every country. But I dread the all too possible day when a large group of Americans go out to express their 1st Amendment rights, only to find themselves, after one or two idiots fire shots or even set off firecrackers, in the middle of a shooting war.
 
 
+1 # CL38 2011-10-09 21:13
I grew up in the 60's. Remember Kent State where kids were killed for assembling & protesting against the war? Other non-violent protests resulted in students being beaten and arrested, just as the cops are doing now: using pepper spray and getting violent.
 
 
0 # Doubter 2011-10-11 11:58
"a shooting war"
I sure hope it doesn't come to that. I had given up all hope for the United States but if these protests lead to anything good, I'll rejoin the country. I do fear, though, that the oligarchy will not release its stranglehold unless FORCED to.
 
 
+10 # Adoregon 2011-10-09 11:14
Faux democracy.
Faux freedoms.
Faux Bill of Rights.

Whose faux is it?

First Amendment – Establishment Clause, Free Exercise Clause; freedom of speech, of the press, and of assembly; right to petition

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

All the government responds with is intimidation and violence.

Faux grownups.
 
 
+1 # GaryE 2011-10-09 17:12
Actually, there is a solution. We can still vote in the primary elections for president. Remember: When you vote in those elections you are actually voting for a slate of delegates that your candidate picked. If your candidate gets more delegates than the other candidate then guess whose delegates write the party platform. I hope Alan Grayson, former congressman from Florida, runs against Obama and his establishment delegates. Watch last Friday's Bill Maher show!
 
 
+4 # jwb110 2011-10-09 15:48
I lived in a city where the Police Dept was a paramilitary unit. Los Angeles has since been given back its brain cells thanks to the Police Chief that Mayor Giulianni fired for stealing his thunder.
America, you ain't see nothing yet!
 
 
+4 # Anarchist 23 2011-10-09 16:59
Remember, you can't have a Police State without police! As for the militarization of police-well as long as people continue to believe the magic theory that you can melt steel with hydrocarbons and continue to believe in the 'Official History' of 911, the ongoing destruction of the country and its replacement by the Geheim Staats will continue unto the bitter end-a militarized state where the 99% have no rights at all. Oppose the Death Eaters! Dumbledore's Army, still Recruiting
 
 
+4 # Billy Bob 2011-10-09 17:41
Does anyone remember 9-12? Not 9-11, but 9-12, or maybe later in the day of 9-11. That's when this happened. Who didn't know that the next 2 decades or so would be dominated by anti-democratic power grabs by people who hate everything this country stands for? Who didn't know that, when more of our rights were stripped away, the process would be lined with pseudo-patrioti c rhetoric?
 
 
+2 # CL38 2011-10-09 21:06
Those who have stolen and bought power are ignoring citizens' rights to be heard, to protest, march and assemble.

We do not want a country that use police to suppress dissent. We do not want a country run by a Police State.
 
 
+1 # 666 2011-10-10 09:01
nice of the media to wake up! always thought it odd mainstream AND alternative media ignored this story - I was shocked to see local PD & FD budgets skyrocketing with high-tech anti-"terrorist " gear in my small (5000) upper middle class suburb every year from early 2002 (ditto in adjacent towns & counties). Everyone should look at their own local govt budgets from this period. During 2004 FL hurricanes, saw police and national guard in APCs and humvees with loaded M16s & .50-calibers watching all street corners as if waiting for "the revolution" -- there wasn't even a hint of looting. It wasn't just 9/11, but that was justification enough to try to prevent another Seattle '98 -- that is what really scares the bejesus out of The Man...
 
 
+1 # reiverpacific 2011-10-10 12:43
Little armies for shit-scared big capitalists -but then that's the only way they stay in power (which to me is really the point beyond just money for it's own sake) and why the Pentagon nabobs are also leaning to private mercenaries. They get loyalty the old-fashioned way -they buy it, like all Banana republic dictators that they've long supported anyway.
Some police forces are starting to baulk at jailing people for the same causes they themselves should be supporting; Wisconsin is a good case in point.
Dart Vader is alive and manning the barricades!
 
 
0 # Doubter 2011-10-11 12:05
Money = Power = Money or Power =Money = Power
 

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