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May 09, 2004
And Another Thing

Another thing it seems necessary to point out to the younger generation, is that in my day (I'm practicing to be a geezer), when you wanted to protest something...you protested it.

If you wanted to picket, you got people, pickets, and a place and you just did it.

Today, of course, you have to hire security, negotiate with the police, talk the city into giving you a permit, buy liability insurance, and rent port-a-potties.

I think the maximum number of people allowed to gather without all of that is three these days. It may be two, but I'm pretty sure you can go as high as three without trouble.

It's hard to know if the increasing restrictions on gathering freely and protesting openly are the result of some growing tendency toward violence on the part of protesters or the violence is the result of the inevitable presence of armed police officers at today's gatherings, isnt it? (Maybe it's just that most of the people willing to jump through all of the necessary hoops in order to stage* a legal protest are really, really angry.)

* In my day protests weren't necessarily "staged." Sometimes they just happened.

Maybe protests have grown more violent because our entire society has grown more violent?

Maybe protests have grown more violent because some people have been screaming for 20 years and the government still isn't responding?

For whatever reason, you're not allowed to assembly freely and protest the goverment any more. You're either an active supporter (read: campaign contributor) or you're the enemy.

We're never going to know What Really Happened at Kent State but we're living with the fallout every day any more.

(For the record, I'm back on the diet and I'm likely to be in a bad mood for the next week. Just so you know.)

Posted by AnneZook at 01:15 PM