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View Diary: Bypassing the "Screamers" for a Real Conversation (200 comments)

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  •  Thanks for the diary, Rep. Slaughter. (0+ / 0-)

    I'm glad you intend to still have a dialogue with your constituents, and I would support whatever decision you make about how to do that. However, I'd like to say that there really is value in being able to talk to our Representatives face to face. And there really is something chilling and disturbing about seeing Representatives retreating from disruptions that are specifically designed to MAKE you retreat.

    I hope you'll look over this diary, which describes a town hall meeting in northern Indiana, and how the organizers were able to have an orderly meeting even tho the "tea party" types came with the intention of disrupting.

    A key thing is simply that they asked the police to be present both inside and out, and announced before the Rep. was introduced that the goal was dialog and that anyone who disrupted the proceedings would be escorted from the room.  

    They also made sure that the front rows were occupied by supportive Democrats, so that the Congressman had a buffer, both physically and psychologically.

    There were other actions taken as well.

    I think what the Indiana example shows is that --IF there is an organized effort beforehand to set up the proper situation -- the tea partiers can be stymied and the normal dialog of our democracy can go on.

    Please consider whether this approach would be appropriate for your situation.

    In any event, good luck to you, and I hope you're right that we'll come out of August with strong support for Health Reform, including a robust Public Option. We need this legislation so badly.

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