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View Diary: Last night in Istanbul... this is amazing. (142 comments)

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  •  Perhaps you should trell me what he wrote then. (0+ / 0-)
    •  "arrested," (11+ / 0-)

      which can lead to a citation, a few hours in jail, a ticket, etc.  All of which are a far cry from the melodramatic nonsense of the Gulag.

      •  I plead guilty to use of rhetoric (0+ / 0-)

        How many years will I get Officer?

        Oh shit! I used rhetoric again. Stop me before I metaphor once more!!!!!!

        •  in fact, at OWS, there were drummers and while (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Quicklund, AoT, Nada Lemming

          they were tolerated for a bit, it became a big issue and there were threats of arresting them if they didn't stop drumming. the rest of the OWS members basically brokered a deal, where they could only drum for one hour per day, at a certain time.

          So, yes, making noise can get you arrested.

          However, in the scenario in Istanbul, the police would be hard-pressed to arrest everyone. Given that water cannons, tear gas, and tanks rolling over people have only strengthened the protest, I don't think symbolic arrests of pot-bangers would dampen things, a bit.

          Sometimes, its all about the numbers and a critical mass of people unwilling to back down; laws be damned.

          •  That's all pretty obvious isn't it? (0+ / 0-)

            I was in Madison once. the noise never stopped. Because why? Because there was some 30,000 people milling around. As you say, you cannot arrest them all.

            But set up a drum circle with only a halkdful of people and without a permit and sure, if you make enough noise you might get arrested or at least pressured to stop.

            These are not signs that Turkey or the US is on the slope to Despotism. There are passive protests and there are civil disobedience forms of protest. Protesters who choose the latter portion of the protest spectrum do so with the specific intent of getting arrested and clogging the courts. So I personally find it a little dishonest to criticize the USA when people who set out to get arrested do get arrested.

            To cut through all the rhetoric and past statements and to return to the basic point: protesting and political expression in pubic is alive and well in the USA. I participated in scores of acts, often just by myself and my two dogs, and I never once ran into any problems with the police.

            I did encounter the police a lot, mind you. But that was because Republicans would phone in a complaint, which the police were obliged to investigate. But that too is part of the political protest game. You gotta know where it is legal to stand and where it is legal to affix your signs.

            Do police abuses occur? Certainly. Is the USA a police state where public expression is quashed? No.

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