I can't help but wonder what it means when a gathering of politicians today requires a police state to protect them from citizens. Just philosophically speaking, what has transpired to make politicians so fearful of mobs of protesters? Could it possibly mean that there are a lot of people upset about what politicians are doing?
You need to know, I'm not the type to hiking around a government building or stalking politicians while carrying a sign or screaming slogans at tv cameras. Not my personality...thank you. And I grant you there are plenty of lunatics around. That's obvious. That said, there is reason for protest in today's heavy handed government environment. People need to be speaking up. But I wonder if the politicians are getting the message. People are not happy out here. It seems a lot of people aren't happy our here. Many of them coming from different angles of angst. Some want more government. Others, like myself, want a lot less government.
I have no idea what is in store for Tampa for the Republican Convention. Probably much the same as what is happening in Charlotte. What is happening in Charlotte? I've heard from a reliable source that NATO will have troops in Charlotte, but can't find proof of it yet. Nonetheless, here are some clues:
"To prepare for the DNC, the Secret Service has requested 2 miles of concrete barriers and more than five miles of 9-foot “anti-scale” steel fence. In addition, the federal government requested nearly 8 miles of lightweight metal barriers and portable barriers designed to withstand the impact of a 15,000-pound car at 30 mph.
The planned road closures will vary during the week, but are expected to begin at 9 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 2. Some could last for four days, according to a 19-page document released Wednesday morning.
There are three vehicle checkpoints for both areas surrounding Time Warner Cable Arena and Bank of America Stadium.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Chief Rodney Monroe says managing traffic “is probably our biggest test” during the convention.
Perhaps the biggest inconvenience is the federal government’s plan to close the John Belk Freeway from Interstate 77 and Independence Boulevard, for Thursday Sept. 6. That section of Interstate 277 handles 80,000 vehicles a day."
This from another Site
"With the help of the federal funds, Charlotte plans to add 2,400 to 3,400 officers from outside departments to its force of more than 1,750."
And this from yet another Site
"The U.S. Secret Service dictated almost every aspect of the security plan, and will do so again in Charlotte, reports the Charlotte Observer. "
Meanwhile, I expect to see nothing and hear nothing from media on protests. Nothing or very little...especially at the DNC in Charlotte. Measures have been taken to keep protesters out of sight and out of the way. Politicians and law enforcement are busy keeping protests way out of the way. It's most likely that the attendees of both the DNC and RNC conventions will never lay eyes on or hear protesters at all.
From the Tucson Sentinal in May
"According to legal scholars, one category of restrictions has mushroomed in importance in the last decade. Known as "spatial tactics," these restrictions literally divide the city into some sections where demonstrators will be allowed to gather and march and others from which they will be barred from doing so. In some cases, the tactics also impose other legal constraints on demonstrators within certain parts of the city, such as prohibiting them from carrying certain items, or changing the process through which they may apply for permits."
"The use of spatial tactics — such as exclusion zones and euphemistically-titled "free speech zones" have been the subjects of numerous lawsuits by groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union. Broadly, however, many of these tactics have survived constitutional challenge."
Well, I guess it's nice to have "Free Speech Zones." I thought the rule was that unless you were yelling "FIRE" in a theatre, everywhere in America was a "Free Speech Zone," (I should say within limits of polite protocols in certain settings such as classrooms and church, for instance.) But not being able to shout at a politician or be within shouting distance sort of defeats the purpose, doesn't it? You've heard the phrase about "speaking to an empty room?"
And that's the point. Defeating the purpose. The political class is fast becoming the most isolated class in the country. They don't want to hear it from citizens, I guess. I don't know where all of this is headed, but if Charlotte and Tampa are any indication, we are more than headed to a police state. Now that we have drones permitted to hover over us conducting surveillance and the government beefing up every agency with millions of hollow point bullets, it does make one wonder.
Actually, it doesn't make one wonder too much. It's plain as the nose on your face. Politicians are running scared of people and enlisting law enforcement to keep people away from them. People are becoming afraid to speak up for fear of being labeled a "terrorist." An environment has been created where no one is safe and all are suspect.