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The NYPD has been sued by NYC law makers for among other things excessive brutality unleashed upon OWS protesters.

Four lawmakers sued the city Monday over its handling of the Occupy Wall Street protests, saying police conduct is so problematic that the force needs an outside monitor.
The city and police violated demonstrators' free speech rights, used excessive force, arrested protesters on dubious charges and interfered with journalists' and council members' efforts to observe what was going on, the four City Council members and others say in the federal civil rights suit.
However, Mayor Bloomberg disagrees saying:
This police department knows how to control crowds without excessive force. . They do allow you to protest, but they don't let it get out of hand," he said after some council members complained about what they called police brutality at a March Occupy demonstration.
Ah yes Mr. Bloomberg. This is what you mean by not letting things get out of hand:

And what does Police Commissioner Kelly think of all this police brutality conducted by his boys and girls?

To see more evidence of the police brutality unleashed against OWS protestors please click here

And read this wonderful article here

Note: Two concerns have popped up in the comments of this diary. The answer to the first is that four council members sued the city over police abuse. The answer to the second is the following (names of Council Members): Letitia James, Melissa Mark-Viverito, Ydanis Rodriguez and Jumaane Williams

Originally posted to Shawn on Tue May 15, 2012 at 09:06 AM PDT.

Also republished by Police Accountability Group, New York City, and Occupy Wall Street.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Who exactly is suing? (4+ / 0-)

    what 'lawmakers'?

    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Tue May 15, 2012 at 09:53:30 AM PDT

  •  We should make a point of the fact that (12+ / 0-)

    every person's behavior is presumably good, until it is proved to have been harmful--after the fact.  Law enforcement is supposed to come into the act AFTER an illegal injurious act has occurred.  There is no provision for preemptive behavior or even prevention. A person may engage in self-defense or the defense of another, but there has to be a clear and present danger.

    The only crimes agents of law enforcement can prevent are their own violations of law and a repetition of criminal behavior by an individual who's already committed a crime once.
    Since the run of the mill law breakers are mostly instinct-driven individuals who have little or no self-control, repetition should be preventable.  However, because our agents of law enforcement have been encouraged and trained to look for compliance with their directives -- i.e. an opportunity to exert their own influence and force -- individuals who are clued into this preference on the part of our agents of government, have learned how to pretend to compliance while law enforcement agents are about and perpetrate their deprivation while they're not looking. Meanwhile, self-directed, law-abiding individuals resent being intercepted and the very idea that their ordinary behavior is subject to being "allowed" or permitted.  And that gives rise to unnecessary conflict with our agents and lessens respect for the law.  When the law is used as an instrument of subordination, free people lose respect.
    Somehow, that permits are issued as a matter of convenience to let public servants know when and where their services might be needed has not registered with the NYPD.  They seem to have acquired the attitude that all citizen behavior that hasn't been allowed, is ipso facto illegal.  They don't understand that the default is legal and illegal has to be proved, not just asserted.

    People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

    by hannah on Tue May 15, 2012 at 10:17:11 AM PDT

    •  It's a common misconception, particularly among (7+ / 0-)

      conservatives, baggers and others on the right; but also many uninformed people on the left buy into this confusion, a confusion purposely helped along by the right wing propaganda machine. That is why our rights are endangered, just as they were during the Viet Nam decade and in the Civil Rights movement.

      Since I was involved in anti-war demonstrations, I'll speak to those. Generally, these started out with small groups sitting on the lawn of my high school and college, and then inviting speakers, which drew a crowd. Once the crowd gathered, the police would arrive and tell us what we were doing (assembling peacefully, on public property) was illegal. Those who were courageous enough (or maybe I was too stupid) and asked "what makes it illegal" heard something to the effect of "because I said so" just before the police baton descended upon one's head, shoulder, knee or gut.

      Invariably, from my high school to Ohio State University, this is how the violence started -- police instigated, insisting their orders were lawful because, well -- they were police.

      That I see this happening again is no surprise. My surprise is the passivity of the population. There isn't enough anger about the abuse of our rights; about our ever smaller public space for political dialogue and raising the issues that affect us all.

      That's the part that makes me so depressed.

      •  It is depressing, not because abuse happens, (3+ / 0-)

        but because most people I know don't care one way or the other.  Apathy will be the death of this nation, and we'll have no one to blame but ourselves.  

        •  Too many preoccupied with just getting by? (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Shawn Russell, VigilantLiberal

          Some doing OK, don't see the injustice and inequality, some may blame themselves for lack of opportunity, and others may be intimidated by the implication of police state oppression (self censorship) as the author of this Diary pointed out in this incisive comment posted to another Diary.

          That leaves just a few who will take action. The balance is tipping, though, I think, towards greater outrage.

          The important and difficult job is never to find the right answers, it is to find the right question. For there are few things as useless–if not dangerous–as the right answer to the wrong question. -- P. Drucker

          by The Angry Architect on Tue May 15, 2012 at 02:05:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  Innocent, law-abiding people do not (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          anticipate being abused by the police.  So, the abuse comes as a surprise and people are not prepared to react. It's what the cops count on.  They are trained to act suddenly.  It's why they show up at people's houses at the crack of dawn.
          The line between the cop and the crook is very thin.  Indeed, the cops have some sympathy with the crook because they employ the same strategies, but they have the advantage of qualified immunity.

          People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

          by hannah on Tue May 15, 2012 at 04:54:00 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I agree. This is the source of the the "no one (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            spoke out" of Elie Wiesle's poem:

            First they came for the communist, and I did not speak out because I was not a communist;
            Then they came for the Socialists, but I did not speak out because I was not a Socialist;
            Then they came for me, and there was no one left to speak out for me.
            (paraphrased, from memory; my apologies to the author.)

            The point being that unless we rouse ourselves to speak up for the rights of others unlike ourselves, we ourselves will also lose our freedom.

            This runs counter to the general American philosophy that "If you haven't done anything wrong, you've got nothing to worry about," because as tyranny settles over a society, right is continually re-defined more and more narrowly and subjectively, until anyone the authorities say is wrong, for any reason, is obviously guilty.

            I would maintain the the line between crooks and police is growing thinner in our time, a result of the political corruption and growing disregard for the law starting at the top of society.

    •  Everything OWS did was illegal. (0+ / 0-)

      That was an intentional ploy to stir the pot.  It got them a lot of attention up front, but is probably also why majorities have turned against them in polls.

      •  What?! Is this a snark comment or are you serious (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        The Angry Architect

        What did OWS do that was illegal? And I want the exact citations of their legal violations with links.

        Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

        Also remember you said everything so I don't want some minor violations here and there such as public urination.

        I am seriously hoping you are being sarcastic.

        •  All the marches without permits. (0+ / 0-)

          And, of course, the civil disobedience etal.  But most of the stuff they did was done unlawfully.  And that was by design.  They knew they needed permits, and declined to get them (part of what they were protesting was the cordoning off of public space with the permitting process)

          •  Please read this article. (0+ / 0-)

            Let me quote from it a little:

            Heidi Boghosian, executive director of the National Lawyers Guild, a progressive bar association founded in 1937, says, “Clearly the law is used politically. Occupy has shed a spotlight on that fact. Laws are enacted arbitrarily and interpreted as to how the status quo wants to interpret them.” She points to how camping in public space – the main rationale for shutting down occupations – is routinely allowed and even assisted by police when thousands of consumers camp overnight for Black Friday sales, the latest iPhone model or concert tickets.
            •  so you concede the illegality. (0+ / 0-)


              •  I will concede illegality but you will have to (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                simultaneously concede arbitrary and discriminatory implementation of the law. As I quoted, above consumers camping overnight to buy iphones are not arrested but OWS protesters are. Why do you think that is?

                Furthermore, civil disobediance means breaking the law in order to change the status quo. If Gandhi organized the salt march against British taxation would you point to Gandhi and say hey dude don't do that because you're breaking the law?

                Or if MLK and other civil rights leaders organized a bus boycott against discrimination and segregation will you go to MLK and say hey dude don't do that because you're breaking the law?

                If so then we would never have progress against an unjust and unfair system, and we would never be able to gain the end of segregation and all the benefits generated by the Civil Rights Movement.

          •  The purpose of permits is to provide information (0+ / 0-)

            to our agents of government so they can be prepared to provide the services that might be necessary when lots of people congregate or, in the case of marches, to clear vehicular traffic out of the way.
            Permits are not an opportunity to deny an activity.  Permits MUST  be issued upon the presentation of the requested information.

            People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

            by hannah on Tue May 15, 2012 at 05:03:36 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Consistent with previous style: (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Shawn Russell, gfv6800

          jw seems to enjoy a bit of pot stirring himself!

          The important and difficult job is never to find the right answers, it is to find the right question. For there are few things as useless–if not dangerous–as the right answer to the wrong question. -- P. Drucker

          by The Angry Architect on Tue May 15, 2012 at 01:55:15 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  This poster commenter believes that if (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Shawn Russell

          an action is not specifically permitted, it is illegal.  He's convinced that all human behavior has to be approved by an authority or it's not legal.  In his world, man is evil and the state is necessary to make man good.  The presumption of innocence only applies after someone has been charged with a crime and serves as a starting point for a contest between two lawyers.
          He's not unique in thinking that everybody's guilty of something.  Most agents of law enforcement and prosecutors believe that and it justifies their own sloppiness.  If everyone's guilty of something, then it doesn't much matter what the punishment is.  See?

          People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

          by hannah on Tue May 15, 2012 at 04:59:44 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Hannah you speak like a philosopher. Thank you. nt (0+ / 0-)
            •  I do think there's a consistent (0+ / 0-)

              ideological basis for conservative behaviors and beliefs. At core, they're probably pessimists, who fear the worst and see their own kind as dangerous, where liberals or optimists see bad behavior as an aberration.
              Why are their fearful?  I suspect it's because their perception of their environment is inconsistent. They don't "see" things as they are (like being very near-sighted and always bumping into things) and so their interactions are often wrong. So, the logical response is to only those things that have proven safe and do them over and over again until someone comes along and provides direction that works well and prompts imitation.
              I think that's what accounts for conservatives engaging in reckless behavior even as they seek to avoid risk.  They want to avoid risk, but they don't know how. They give directions because following directions is a comfort to them, when they're well-intentioned.  Of course, when they follow the directions of incompetents like themselves, then the consequences are dire, not because people have bad intentions but because they do not know how things work. (Imagine someone who thinks cars run on the water in the radiator telling you how to fix an engine).

              People to Wall Street: "LET OUR MONEY GO"

              by hannah on Wed May 16, 2012 at 02:10:57 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

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