|Progressive Calendar 09.01.08||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: David Shove (shove001tc.umn.edu)|
|Date: Mon, 1 Sep 2008 16:01:32 -0700 (PDT)|
P R O G R E S S I V E C A L E N D A R 09.01.08 POLICE RAIDS III 1 Carr 2 Shove 3 Carr 4 Thorstad 5 Fratto 6 Fratto 7 Hare 8 Howell/Beyerstein 9 Dooley/Clemens 10 Permibus 11 Strand 12 Kelly 13 Nestor 14 Royce 15 Kelly 16 Gibbs 17 Western 18 Slade 19 Driscoll 20 Driscoll 21 Kelly/Salon 22 Driscoll/Villaume 23 Western 24 Garofoli (SF Chronicle) 25 Muller 26 Greenwald (Salon) 27 Gordon/Glidden --1-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 01:07:25 -0500 From: Jan Carr <jan [at] carrcreatives.com> Subject: Re: [SPIF] WHAT TO DO: Fletcher and the RNC The important thing here is for all our elected officials to express their views on the actions of the last 24 hours. If any of them can offer a defense, I would surely like to hear what they have to say. As for St. Paul, Mayor Coleman, Chief Harrington, and especially Matt Bostrom have all spoken eloquently and persuasively in the run-up to the RNC on their commitment to act responsibly and protect basic civil rights. They need to disassociate themselves and the city from these repugnant acts of intimidation and preventative detention. The question is whether they have the courage and will to do so. --2-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 02:01:56 -0500 (CDT) From: David Shove <shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu> Subject: [SPIF] Urine of mass destruction (UMD) Thanks to our beloved Sheriff Fletcher, the Pentagon has just wised up to Urine of Mass Destruction! No more lost wars! Throw a bucket of urine on 'em and that's it - it's all over. Ausgespielt. Or, have our noble lads standing duty up in helicopters, ready to unzip and do their duty for god and country at a moment's notice, raining down on inferior foreigners (they're all inferior) the unrefined essence of America, the Eau d' euess. O no! they'd cry, We give! Uncle! What we need now are beady-eyed inspectors roaming St Paul, with urine sniffer dogs (they'd LOVE it!) and a mandate to arrest anyone with open urine, or more treacherously, urine stored up secretly in body cavities where police could not see it or taste it! So I say, No more urine! Outlaw urine today! The only good urinator is a dead urinator! We'd rather be pissed off than pissed on! I hope this post gives you material for many hours of meditation and profound reflection. It takes an event such as the RNC to lay bare the insidiousness of seemingly everyday things, such as a liquid we (most of us) have been associated with since birth. It is now exposed for the anti-life, anti-plutocratic juice that it is. (Rich people don't urinate; it affects them the way krypton affects Superman). You Betcher we're for Fletcher Dave Shove Roseville Info about Dave Shove: http://forums.e-democracy.org/p/daveshove --3-- From: Jan Carr <jan [at] carrcreatives.com> Subject: Re: [SPIF] WHAT TO DO: Fletcher and the RNC to John Krenik ---- You're a smart and thoughtful guy.............. but you just don't get it. I am completely baffled by your assertions that the government (through the police) should be empowered to intimidate and arrest people based on what they look like, or what their intentions MIGHT be. Too often it happens -- but prior to the last 24 hours, it has been mostly on a case by case basis, at least with citizens of this country. As the government cast their dragnet for terrorists following 9/11, it now appears they are trying to use the same tactics to round up citizens they regard as suspicious, with the hope they will quell the ardor of demonstrators. I suspect just the opposite will prove to be true. These actions are very likely to generate both anger and alarm, and drive even more people to the barricades over the next week. Personally, I was never moved to make the trip to the downtown area, as wrong-headed as I think Republican policies might be. But this is a whole different thing...................... and it has nothing to do with Republicans vs. Democrats. These police actions have turned the issue into "what kind of country do want for ourselves?" --4-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 07:47:30 -0500 From: David Thorstad <binesi [at] gvtel.com> Subject: Saint Paul the police state This is the second [PC] of such up-to-the-minute reports on the police state tactics being implemented two days before the Republican convention, in both Minneapolis and Saint Paul, brought to you by David Shove's Progressive Calendar. The Secret Service appears to be in control of the local police departments. This is like Stalinist Russia or Nazi Germany. Wake up, America! You live in a dictatorship. This is brought to you by the Patriot Act that both Republicans and Democrats in Congress voted for, including so-called liberals, one of whom is running for president. For shame. David --5-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 06:22:18 -0700 (PDT) From: Mike Fratto <mfratto [at] yahoo.com> Subject: Re: [SPIF] WHAT TO DO: Fletcher and the RNC Unfortunately, you are wrong Jan. While the CountyCommissioners are responsible for the Sheriff budget, he can sue the Commissioners for a budget he thinks is more appropriate. He has done this and won. This issue was one of the issues studied when The Ramsey County Charter Commission looked at amending the charter to change the way the sheriff is employed. A motion to place this measure on the November ballot lost in a tie vote due to the absence of one member. --6-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 06:54:56 -0700 (PDT) From: Mike Fratto <mfratto [at] yahoo.com> To: stpaul-issues [at] forums.e-democracy.org, hare [at] tcfreenet.org Subject: Re: [SPIF] Buckets of urine, slingshots, anti-bus weapons seized in raid on a... If you had the chance to read the Pioneer Press' article on the conviction of Fletcher friend Mark Naylon in today's paper, you will have learned Nylon was regularly used as a Confidential Reliable Informant (CRI) to justify warrants. I don't know what information was used to justify these warrants but I would bet that if the Sheriff's department faked arguments to justify a warrant in the past, they would certainly do it again. The article begins with: "FBI agents had been investigating allegations of corruption in the Ramsey County Sheriff's Department for some months; while they had strong suspicions and tantalizing leads, the pieces didn't yet add up to a case they could take to court." It then states: "More than four years later, Arvin's cooperation resulted in federal convictions last week for the cop, Timothy Conrad Rehak, and the sheriff's spokesman, Mark Paul Naylon. Naylon himself is a close friend and confidant of Fletcher he was best man at the sheriff's second wedding and colleagues say he was given carte blanche in the department to do whatever he wanted and answered to no one except the sheriff. Although Naylon wasn't a licensed peace officer and had no law enforcement training, he spent virtually all his time playing cop, testimony in the trial in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis showed. He was assigned to the investigations unit, and Fletcher let him carry a sidearm, participate in arrests, conduct searches, seize and handle property. When the need arose, deputies even used him as their "confidential reliable informant" when they filled out requests to judges to grant search warrants, according to testimony. and do other work that state law generally reserves for licensed peace officers." While this information doesn't mean Sheriff Fletcher continued this practice in requesting these warrants. It certainly raises questions. --7-- From: hare [at] tcfreenet.org <hare [at] tcfreenet.org> Subject: Re: [SPIF] Buckets of urine, slingshots, anti-bus weapons seized in raid on a... To: stpaul-issues [at] forums.e-democracy.org Date: Sunday, August 31, 2008, 12:16 AM I can only wonder what a police raid of my house would look like in the papers, given that I have an extensive library of books on chemical processes, etc. (I have a degree in Chemical Engineering) Citizens have to be presumed innocent until proven guilty. Public officials, by definition, do not get that same assumption. When there is a raid and no one is arrested, you have to wonder what's up. Our Constitution was deliberately written to include protections for citizens - not people with badges. If you have trouble understanding why, a refresher course on King George III might be useful. --8-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 09:47:02 -0500 From: Lydia Howell <lhowell [at] visi.com> Subject: [Discuss] RNC:BOOKSTORE WORKER'S HOME RAIDED BY POLICE Mike Whelan is the peaceful leader of the Arise Bookstore Collective in Minneapolis. During the 12 years that I've known Mike, he was always committed to nonviolence. Lydia Howell, KFAI Radio producer, Minneapolis,MN - VIdEO OF ST PAUL POLICE RAID ON HOME OF NON-PROFIT BOOKSTORE MEMBER (Text INTERVIEW W/HOMEOWNER AFTER VIDEO LINK) > http://the-uptake.groups.theuptake.org/en/videogalleryView/id/647 > <http://the-uptake.groups.theuptake.org/en/videogalleryView/id/647> > http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G5ju0Xn6xsc > <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G5ju0Xn6xsc> http://www.arisebookstore.org <http://www.arisebookstore.org> Inside an RNC Raid by Lindsay Beyerstein > http://majikthise.typepad.com/majikthise_/2008/08/inside-an-rnc-r.html > <http://majikthise.typepad.com/majikthise_/2008/08/inside-an-rnc-r.html> Thanks to the miracle of cellular technology, I was able to talk to a homeowner while his home was surrounded by police conducting an RNC-related raid. At approximately two-thirty this afternoon, I reached Mike Whelan, a waiter and army veteran, at his duplex at 951 Iglehart Ave. in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Whelan said he'd invited independent observers from the group LegalWatch stay in one half of his side-by-side duplex while they monitored RNC protests. Whelan described himself as a supporter of the RNC demonstrations, but said he is not affiliated with any particular group. "I want to build a country that's based on good social values," he explained. When I spoke to him, Whelan was waiting in one half of the duplex with his roommates, Dan and Julian. The three were afraid to go outside because the police were still there. Whelan said he thought that the police were inside the opposite side of the duplex, where the legal observers were staying. "I think they are detaining people," he added. Whelan, who seemed remarkably calm for a guy whose flower garden had just been trampled by police with drawn automatic weapons, said he'd just returned from a morning of garage sale shopping when the commotion started. That would have been about one o'clock local time. He described what happened: "About an hour and a half ago 20 to 30 heavily armed police officers surrounded the house," Whelan said. "One of my roommates said, 'I want to see a warrant,' and she was immediately detained." "Are they still outside?" I asked. "Oh, yes, they're still outside," Whelan replied cheerfully. "The streets are blocked off." "How you did figure out there was a raid going on?" I asked. "It sounded like people were falling down on my porch," he said. "Cops were running up both sides of the house onto the porch. Whelan says his roommate, Erin Stalmaker, went out to talk to talk to the police. She asked the officers why they were there. The officers asked why people were running away from them. Erin reportedly told the officers that their drawn automatic weapons probably had something to do with it. She was detained after asking to see a warrant. "Are you scared?" I asked. "No, I'm a veteran," he said. "I was in the army. I was a military police officer. I wouldn't have done this." Whelan said it was especially perplexing that the police would target his home. "There's nothing here," he said. "These are the 'checking' people. They're not even going to be in the demonstration. Some are lawyers." Whelan was watching a large crowd of legal observers gathering across the street, many wearing red or green hats. The police officers he could identify were from Saint Paul, but he thought there might be other forces on the scene as well. The officers were wearing black uniforms. Their vehicles were "non-descript" vans, not police cruisers. TV cameras were also on the scene. Whelan couldn't be sure because a tree was blocking his view, but he thought City Council member Melvin Carter had arrived. Whelan called him when the raid started. (Talk about constituent service.) "You figure this would be going on in South Africa, or Russia, not in Saint Paul," Whelan said, marveling at the incongruity of it all. "Saint Paul is nice." --9-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 09:30:02 -0500 From: Ted Dooley <614grand [at] winternet.com> Subject: a lovely statement Fwd: Why I risk arrest today From: Steve Clemens <steveclemens [at] msn.com> Date: August 31, 2008 8:54:22 AM CDT Subject: Why I risk arrest today Personal Statement on Why I Risk Arrest at the Republican National Convention. August 31, 2008 This immoral and illegal war against the peoples of Iraq must stop now! I am required by the Nuremberg Principles to not be complicit with this war of aggression that the UN Charter calls a grave war crime. I have written and called my Members of Congress as well as the President. I have sat in my Senators' offices. I have marched and demonstrated in countless nonviolent vigils and demonstrations against this war and the illegal weapons (cluster bombs and depleted uranium munitions) used against the people of Iraq. I have protested the sanctioned use of torture and other violations of human rights under the guise of prosecuting a "War on Terror" - while, ironically terrorizing others! I have written Letters to the Editor. When I heard that President Bush planned to address the Republican National Convention in my home state, I felt I needed to nonviolently confront the President himself since this War and Occupation continues. (On an attachment you will find the letter I hope to deliver.) If I am arrested for nonviolently attempting to deliver this letter and the International Law documents I carry to the President, I will choose to refuse to pay bail to seek my release. To charge someone for their right to nonviolently voice their opposition to criminal activity is a tax against my conscience. I will refuse to pay bail to a government that seeks to protect this War Criminal. I march and protest today in solidarity with the civilians of Iraq and the millions of refugees who have had to endure this violent attack and occupation of their homeland. I ask my fellow U.S citizens to rise up nonviolently and refuse to allow this war to continue. I try to faithfully follow the example and teaching of Jesus of Nazareth who calls me to "Love my enemies" and "Love my neighbor as myself". I call all those who claim to follow the life and witness of Jesus to find creative ways to stop this war and work to heal its many wounds. Steve Clemens 2912 E. 24th St. Minneapolis, MN 55406-1322 (612) 724-3255 --10-- From: TCpagans [at] yahoogroups.com [mailto:TCpagans [at] yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Nanette Sent: Sunday, August 31, 2008 9:18 AM Subject: Permibus Seized - press release POLICE SEIZE PERMIBUS At approximately 6:25 pm on August 30, 2008 Minneapolis Police, Minnesota State Troopers, Ramsey County Sheriffs, Saint Paul Police, and University of Minnesota Police pulled over the Earth Activist Training Permaculture Demonstration Bus (Permibus) by exit 237 on Interstate 94. Initially the police told the people on the bus to exit. When the people on the bus asked if they were being detained they were told that they were but police were unable to provide justification. When asked why they pulled the bus over they refused to answer. After repeated requests to explain why the bus had been stopped Officer Honican of the Minneapolis Police explained that this was just a routine traffic stop though he did not explain the reason for the traffic stop. The police then told Stan Wilson, the driver and registered owner of the Permibus, that they were going to impound the bus in case they wanted to execute a search warrant later. After more than an hour of being questioned by Stan and Delyla Wilson as to the legalities of their detainment and the impoundment of the Permibus, the police then informed Stan that the bus, which is legally registered as a passenger vehicle in the state of Montana, was being impounded for a commercial vehicle inspection. Shortly afterward Sergeant Paul Davis, a commercial vehicle inspector arrived on scene. Despite the polices insistence that the reason for impoundment was for a commercial vehicle inspection the Permibus crew were not allowed to remove anything from the bus including computers, toiletries, and 17-year-old Megan Wilson's shoes. The police finally allowed the animals to be removed from the Permibus before it was towed, leaving the Permibus family standing beside their chickens and dogs, homeless on the highway. The Permibus was relocating from the Bedlam Theatre in Minneapolis, where they had spent the day teaching Urban Permaculture, to a friend's house in Saint Paul for a well deserved break. The Permibus has been in the Minneapolis area since August 2nd when the crew appeared at the Midtown Farmers Market for a morning of Permaculture education including Permaculture 101, chicken care, seed ball making for kids, and the Permi-puppet show. During the past month the Permibus has parked at several local businesses and, as a neighborly gesture of respect for local police, Mr. Wilson contacted the appropriate precincts just to let them know the Permibus was in the area and had permission from the business owners to be parked on their lot. Through this, as well as other casual discussions with Minneapolis and Saint Paul police officers, the Permibus crew found the local police to be interested and respectful. However on August 30th all that changed when, for no apparent valid reason the police pulled over and seized the Permibus. After the incident Stan Wilson said, "If the combined law enforcement of Minneapolis, Saint Paul, Ramsey County, and the State of Minnesota can pull over and impound a vehicle and home used to teach organic gardening and sustainability, one has to wonder what it is our government really fears. After all, we seek to teach people that the real meaning of homeland security is local food, fuel and energy production. For that we have had our lives stolen by government men with guns." As of now, after repeated requests to be present at any vehicle inspection, with an list of what they are inspecting for, as well as requests to be served any warrants for searches of the vehicles prior to a search and to be present during the search the Permi-family has been unable to ascertain the current status of the Permibus. On site Mr. Wilson was told that Officer Palmerranky was the inspector in charge of the case and would determine if the Permi-family's rights protecting them from unreasonable search and seizure would be respected. Neither Officer Palmerranky nor his supervisor has yet to return Mr. Wilson's calls. The loss of her home and possessions is particularly difficult on seventeen-year-old Megan Wilson. Megan, a shining example of what this country asks of today's youth, has dedicated herself to making positive changes in the world. She was the youth keynote speaker at the Local to Global conference in Phoenix AZ, has taught conflict resolution at youth shelters and is the outreach coordinator for the Skills for a New Millennium Tour, the family traveling educational project. Megan believes that, "While I understand that the world we live in is not as it should be I strive to live and teach in a way that shows the world how life could be. What I don't understand is why I can't get dressed for an evening out with friends in my own home without armed men stealing my life out from under me." The Permi-family, along with their dogs and Permaculture super-hero chickens are currently being housed by folks in the Twin Cities. The Skills for a New Millennium Tour is a family education project that travels around the United States teaching homesteading, citizenship, and life skills at farmers markets, community gardens, churches, intentional communities, schools, and in people's living rooms. The Skills Tour is a donation supported project dedicated to providing tools for sustainable living, including Permaculture, to anyone who is interested, regardless of income. "We believe that any solution that is not accessible to the poor and urban areas is not a real solution for the future," states Delyla Wilson. Permaculture is a design system with ethics and principles that can be applied to food production, home design, and community building in order to increase sustainability in food production, energy production, and social systems. The Permibus is a rolling demonstration of small scale sustainable living with three people, three dogs, three chickens, and a box of worms as permanent residence. The chickens and worms are part of a closed-loop food productions composting system that supports the Permibus's traveling garden. For more information on the seizure of the Permibus, the Skills for the New Millennium Tour, or Permaculture, the Wilson's can be reached at 406-721-8427 or through email at skillstour [at] gmail. <mailto:skillstour%40gmail.com> com. You can also see pictures and read stories about the last six months of their educational adventures at permibus.livejournal.com. To our supporters: First we ask that as many people as possible contact precinct one in Minneapolis, MN at 612-673-5701 and Mayor Rybak at Phone: (612) 673-2100 or call 311 or call (612) 673-3000 outside Minneapolis and demand the immediate release of the Permibus. We are also in desperate need of donations. Though we do not yet know the full cost of getting the permibus returned we know that it will include tow fee, impound fees, and legal fees. To donate contact us directly for a local address or... Donate On-line: Go to: www.earthactivisttraining.org/donate.htm Click on: Donate Now! Under "Gift Information" write: Permibus Under "Please send acknowledgment of this gift to" write: skillstour [at] gmail. <mailto:skillstour%40gmail.com> com Donate by Mail: Make check payable to: A.C.T. On the "For" line write: Permibus Send check to: A.C.T. 1405 Hillmount St. Austin, TX 78704 --11-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 10:00:52 -0500 From: David Strand <lavgrn [at] gmail.com> Subject: Re: [mnlgrn] RNC:BOOKSTORE WORKER'S HOME RAIDED BY POLICE Mike is also a Lavender Green who helped us out at the pride booth this year and also is working on organizing the tables at the Nader/Gonzales rally at Orchestra Hall on the 4th. It's rather ironic that this sweet guy's duplex was raided when the people he allowed to stay at his home are the media team for a group of legal observers from New York here to observe to prevent police abuses during the RNC. Dave Bicking's daughter, Monica Bicking, has been arrested after her house was raided and 10 people detained. Dave Bicking was a Green Party candidate for city council in Minneapolis and likely will be again. Ironically(yes again) he was recently appointed to serve on a city board whose responsibilities include looking into cases of police abuse. However, there is no reason to fear if you are coming out to the schedule marches. In fact, it is more important that we have more massive turnouts than ever to show that intimidation tactics of the Dept. of Homeland Defense will not work on the thousands of us planning to march against the war Monday in St. Paul or as part of the March for Our LIves- poor people's march for economic justice. And recall that Green Party Vice Presidential Candidate Rosa Clemente will be speaking at both these events! David Strand --12-- Date: Mon, 1 Sep 2008 03:21:02 +1200 (NZST) From: "Grace Kelly (nicknamed Kelly)" <saintcurmudgeon [at] earthlink.net> To: St. Paul Issues Forum <stpaul-issues [at] forums.e-democracy.org> Subject: Re: [SPIF] Buckets of urine, slingshots, anti-bus weapons seized in raid on a... In looking at the case of dangerous materials found in RNC raids, there are some standards that ought to be applied when looking at the evidence: 1) Is this stuff that is normally in homes, or associated with a hobby or business? So far all of the items can be explained by hobbies or business. My husband was fairly concerned that bottles were considered a threat, since he does home brewing. We have archery equipment, it is a hobby! One of the people raided was a scrap metal seller for a living. As a scrap metal collector, there was bound to be metal that could look like a homemade "caltrop" 2) Are "all" the ingredients found in one place, in sufficient quantities to be considered a threat? I was watching in the place where the "buckets" appeared from. No one was able to see into the buckets to see if they are buckets of pure urine or urine water collected from the toilets. The search warrants said collect urine and feces, and the squad involved was from North Minneapolis used to drug raids, where toilets are pumped to collect what is caught in arch after the first flush. I am saying not what I "know" to be true, simply showing that the evidence is not yet compelling. So a protester is going to show up at the rally point, with one of the big heavy buckets of urine on a hot day, march with it at least a mile and then at some point throw it at the police? If buckets of urine were going to be used on police, it would have been easier to just throw them when the houses were raided. No reports of that. To be credible, I would to see a least huge quantities of water balloons, funnels, gas masks and plastic gloves - in one place. The stuff gathered came from about 7 raids. So if there was going to be a serious "homemade caltrop" threats, wouldn't they need at least 3 buckets full, not just nine individual pieces? 3) Is the threat more than we would face on ordinary days from ordinary events? In the picture of Sheriff Fletcher's displays, there looks like about 9 possible "homemade caltrop". In the picture of him holding one in his hand, they look about two inches high. Given the way that Governor Pawlenty has maintained roads and taken LGA funds so that local roads are also in poor condition, we face more threats from more that two inch deep potholes all the time. There are stories of whole string of cars taken out at a time. The cobblestone streets here are far more threatening. I accidentally went down a alley cobble stone street this spring, and I thought I would have a flat tire for certain. Then there is stuff on the roads from students moving in open trucks. So with these questions, look at this list again and check out pictures: A news release from the Ramsey County Sheriff's Office says these items were confiscated during the raid in St. Paul: Materials used in creating "sleeping dragons" (pvc pipe, chicken wire, duct tape) Large amounts of urine (including 3 - 5 gallon buckets of urine) Wrist Rockets Assorted edged weapons including a machete, hatchet and several throwing knives Gas mask and filter Empty glass bottles Rags Flammable liquids Homemade Caltrops (devises used to disable buses in roads) Metal pipes Axes Bolt cutters Sledge hammers Old tires (for burning) Repelling equipment Kryptonite locks Empty plastic buckets cut and made into shields Material for protective padding An army helmet (MPR News Cut) So far what we know is not a compelling case. It is true that websites have threats on them. However, I have been threatened on this forum and on my blog by people who brag about closets full of guns, yet I have not taken that seriously, nor have the police. The threat of stopping traffic for awhile or holding a sign of the inappropriate size does not constitute a threat sufficient enough to have a "high cost" raid. I am not saying that we should not be all aware and checking for danger, or that the police should not be checking out reported possible dangerous crime. I do think that we should some good common Minnesota sense in all of this. Grace Kelly nicknamed Kelly Curmudgeon from Merriam Park Grace (nicknamed Kelly) Kelly Merriam Park, St Paul Info about Grace Kelly (nicknamed Kelly): http://forums.e-democracy.org/p/gracekelly --13-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 10:25:03 -0500 From: Bruce Nestor <nestor [at] denestlaw.com> Subject: National Lawyers Guild Seeks Judicial Review of Preventative Detentions Ordered by Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher PRESS RELEASE - PRESS RELEASE National Lawyers Guild Seeks Judicial Review of Preventative Detentions Ordered by Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher August 31, 2008 - The Minnesota Chapter of the National Lawyers Guild is seeking prompt judicial review of the preventative detentions of six citizen activists ordered by Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher. Monica Bicking, Eryn Trimmer, Luce Guillen Givins, Erik Oseland, Garrett Fitzgerald, and Nathanael Secor, are all currently being held on "probable cause holds" in the Ramsey County Jail after being transferred late last night from the Hennepin County Jail. In Minnesota, a probable cause hold can be ordered by a police officer without a prosecutor or a judge reviewing a criminal complaint. Due to the arrest occurring on a weekend holiday, all six citizens can be held until Wednesday, September 3, 2008, without the filing of a formal charge. Three of the arrestees are life-long residents of Minnesota. Two previously worked in early childhood education and passed background checks to obtain that employment. All have extensive ties to Minnesota, including employment and family members. One is a graduate of the University of Minnesota. None of the six arrestees have ever been convicted of a felony or crime of violence. One person arrested on Saturday morning, August 30th, was previously detained on Friday night at the St. Paul convergence center where he was photographed and identified. Despite being labeled a "key member" of a "criminal enterprise" and a planner of a "criminal conspiracy," he was released on Friday night even though Sheriff Fletcher had conducted a months long investigation, using informants, and presumably identified the "key leaders" who he claims were organizing riots and civil disorder. All six arrestees appear to face maximum charges of a gross misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum sentence of one year in jail and a fine of $3,000. Absent death or use of a firearm, a criminal charge of "Riot" in Minnesota is a gross misdemeanor. Minn. Stat. §609.71. A charge of "civil disorder" is a gross misdemeanor and requires proof that a person made or instructed another to use a firearm, explosive, or incendiary device to cause civil unrest. Minn. Stat. §609.669. Property damage in Minnesota under $1,000.00 is also a gross misdemeanor. Minn. Stat. §609.595. Despite the incendiary and alarmist language used by Sheriff Fletcher, there is no evidence that the common household items and tools seized in the pre-emptive house raids were intended to be used to cause death or civil unrest. No judge or prosecutor has reviewed the allegations made by Sheriff Fletcher. In light of the fact that none of the arrestees appear to face felony charges, their extensive ties to Minnesota, and their lack of any serious prior criminal record, attorneys for the National Lawyers Guild are seeking to have a Ramsey County judge review the detentions on Sunday, August 31, 2008. This would be an informal review at which a judge could dismiss the charges or set conditions of release. Media updates will be provided if such a review is held. Contact: Bruce Nestor 612-991-9488 - President, MN Chapter of Natl Lawyers Guild --14-- From catyroyce [at] gmail.com Mon Sep 1 16:18:56 2008 Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 10:31:45 -0500 From: cathleen royce <catyroyce [at] gmail.com> Subject: Re: [SPIF] Buckets of urine, slingshots, anti-bus weapons seized in raid on a... The pictures did not in any way shape or form show "buckets of urine." They showed two or three five gallon buckets with about one or two inches of liquid. The cops got a warrant with some questionable information, it had to be questionable. They got nothing but normal household items that all of us have around the house. I've had a bucket of human waste when my toilet is broken. And its not an automatic code violation to have a broken toilet or bucket of pee around. Get real! This is serious business though and we should all be very, very worried right now. There should be a thorough and deep investigation into the basis of the warrants and Fletcher's activity in these violations of civil rights. caty royce south minneapolis --15-- Date: Mon, 1 Sep 2008 04:03:06 +1200 (NZST) From: "Grace Kelly (nicknamed Kelly)" <saintcurmudgeon [at] earthlink.net> To: St. Paul Issues Forum <stpaul-issues [at] forums.e-democracy.org> Subject: Re: [SPIF] Buckets of urine, slingshots, anti-bus weapons seized in raid on a... Continuing on the logic of all of this: These houses all had many people crashing in them. The one I had covered had 10 extra people. The raid was at 10AM. So simply the police may have collected the temporary bathroom setups so that everyone could shower etc. So contrary to another poster, I am "getting real". So what was on the warrant that was NOT found? Is there a copy of the search warrant anywhere? --16-- From elydog [at] gmail.com Mon Sep 1 16:19:12 2008 Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 11:07:05 -0500 From: ElyDog <elydog [at] gmail.com> Subject: Re: Progressive Calendar 08.31.08 On a legal note, The items shown by the police on Saturday in a WCCO news piece - slingshot, some twisted nails for puncturing tires, bottles of something or other - were not identified as to WHERE they were found in the report. It is not above the FBI/DHS to plant evidence. Attorneys will, of course, be asking this question - i.e. detailed 'chain of custody' as to where these materials were found, photos putting the evidence 'on site' etc. However, this is something we should not forget as a distinct possibility. Greg Gibbs --17-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 11:08:12 -0500 (GMT-05:00) From: Guy Western <wtscs [at] mindspring.com> Subject: Re: [SPIF] Buckets of urine, slingshots, anti-bus weapons seized in raid on a... Really, John, get a grip. Must we propose a constitutional amendment that specifies a right to keep and bear NAILS? A couple of inches of pee in a bucket hardly amounts to justification for these Gestapo tactics. No, John, we don't kick down the doors of private homes and drag people out in handcuffs for code violations. It takes months--years. As a Ward 2 block club leader, I can tell you that Councilmember Thune is one of the most careful and conscientious about cleaning up our neighborhoods and keeping them safe in such a way as to protect the individual rights and liberties of residents, tenants and property owners alike. This just another horrendous abuse of power against fellow citizens. This is my country, too, Krenik, and this is making me sick. Your attempts to justify it, included. You and Fletcher are stomping on MY flag. If I had to live long enough to see the "democracy" my father died to preserve come to this sorry pass, at least I've lived long enough to see a proud, articulate, black American nominated for the highest office as well. It's my only consolation. - Guy Western --18-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 18:50:27 +1200 (NZST) From: John Slade <jslade [at] labornet.org> To: St. Paul Issues Forum <stpaul-issues [at] forums.e-democracy.org> Subject: Re: [SPIF] Hauling away protesters in advance I suspect that Sheriff Fletcher is a member of the Twin Cities Joint Terrorism Task Force, which I would venture to guess has been quietly involved in this. I'm also sure that the new video-game centers known as 'super secret central control' were full of people, who were enjoying moving cops around on the map like little boys with toy soldiers on the diningroom floor. I urge people who interview him to ask about the JTTF and if there are people on it involved in this security. I want to thank the people on this list (the sane ones, anyway) for their clear sight on what's going on. That said, I'd guess the operating agreement for security (while the President is not in town) puts Fletcher at or near the top, with his agency there too. So for all the jurisdictional considerations, it's likely that they'll provide paper, during the trials, which shows that there was an agreement that it was OK. Should that kind of agreement been made? Doubtful. While the President is here, the unbiased professionals of the Secret Service will likely move from 'veto power and in the loop' to 'on top of everything'. Good thing this Administration doesn't believe in politicizing agencies that are part of the criminal justice system. I also think that the media activists are gonna score big time with this one. That's why they're the targets. During the 2004 convention their video work was responsible for over 400 people getting their charges dropped, as the police's SWORN TESTIMONY was shown to be ENTIRELY FALSE. For 400 people. So yeah, I think that Fletcher just overspent his budget on legal defense. I give Indymedia a credibility score of four, and any police spokesman in the next week a credibility score of two. John Slade Dayton's Bluff, Saint Paul Info about John Slade: http://forums.e-democracy.org/p/5DTbsEHYNSYIexttiRGBMI --19-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 12:15:10 -0500 From: Andy Driscoll <andy [at] driscollgroup.com> Subject: Re: [SPIF] Buckets of urine, slingshots, anti-bus weapons seized in raid on a... It is quite clear from this ill-considered series of tirades against demonstrators just how far perhaps half this country has strayed from the fundamental tenets of the Constitution that created it. Free speech. Free assembly. Freedom to petition government. Freedom to dissent from even the law as written in order to change it. Mr. Krenik sees more threat among his own countrypeople who are reacting to what they see as an increasingly rising oppressive police state as an excuse for "security" when, in fact, controlling dissent is not anti-terrorism, but, indeed the suppression of rights guaranteed under the rule of law he and others purport to defend by these actions. Mr. Krenik is merely one voice persisting in the belief that more police, more security, more fear-mongering and more oppression of people who do not believe as he does will actually make us more secure when it will engender the complete opposite Â until the day actually arrives when we are at real war with each other in the streets. The simple fact is that the last 24 hours of police actions against innocent civilians - they are innocent until proven guilty of a criminal act (which possession of disrupting materials is not) - are portrayed as justified by the "threat" such household items appear to create. No such police action IS justified under our rule of law, and as such, Sheriff Fletcher and his minions have violated the law far more dangerously than those not in the uniform of sworn officers. I say "sworn" because it is not the sworn duty of police officers to arrest people on suspicion of what they might do, but on what they have done or are doing at the immediate moment. Uniforms are symbols giving cops the carte blanche power to inflict unlawful damage on people with whom they and others may disagree politically and ideologically. Police officers are not sworn to protect us from dissenters of the present government. They're hired to protect all of us from true physical harm and present danger and to investigate and solve crimes already committed. The point is - there's no changing the political mindset of a John Krenik or a Neal Krasnoff or an Andy Driscoll. The point is: the police have no right to impose one ideology on another by actions couched in "official security" exercises. And, other opinions to the contrary notwithstanding, one need not fulfill all of history's definitions of "Gestapo" tactics to see them at play here and in actions across this country over the last 100 years. It's time to shut down the criminals - in uniform. Andy Driscoll Crocus Hill/Ward 2 --20-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 12:50:00 -0500 From: Andy Driscoll <andy [at] driscollgroup.com> Subject: Re: [SPIF] Legality of Preemptory Raids, was: Buckets of urine, etc. Suspicion of conspiracy has always been a rubric for police actions that fall outside the law. Anyone can claim conspiracy - and often do to justify preemption. Proving it has always been the conundrum and conspiracy charges rarely hold up in court. Of course, that's well after the events that have already violated the rights of innocents. Law professors can be wrong as well. --21-- Date: Mon, 1 Sep 2008 06:00:04 +1200 (NZST) From: "Grace Kelly (nicknamed Kelly)" <saintcurmudgeon [at] earthlink.net> To: St. Paul Issues Forum <stpaul-issues [at] forums.e-democracy.org> Subject: [SPIF] Preemptive Video Arrest I am a citizen journalist and sometimes a voluntary legal observer. As I long ago stated, I am pledged to peace and law. Basically every legal observer has to be absolutely careful in staying neutral, staying calm and carefully recording all of the facts, while staying out of the police's way. So there is no case of conspiracy of breaking any law, in fact, just the opposite. Yet these folks were raided with a federal warrant. (Perhaps because a Ramsey Court Judge was sane and said there is no reasonable case), Basically, it is this raid that really makes the case, that the only purpose of these raids is to take people away from totally lawful protests, from reporting and from legal observing, by pre-emptive arrests. It is this raid in particular that says that this raids are simply to intimidate people into not parading nor protesting. From Salon, quoting Eileen Clancy's blog Quote: This is Eileen Clancy . . . The house where I-Witness Video is staying in St. Paul has been surrounded by police. We have locked all the doors. We have been told that if we leave we will be detained. One of our people who was caught outside is being detained in handcuffs in front of the house. The police say that they are waiting to get a search warrant. More than a dozen police are wielding firearms, including one St. Paul officer with a long gun, which someone told me is an M-16. We are suffering a preemptive video arrest. For those that don't know, I-Witness Video was remarkably successful in exposing police misconduct and outright perjury by police during the 2004 RNC. Out of 1800 arrests, at least 400 were overturned based solely on video evidence which contradicted sworn statements which were fabricated by police officers. It seems that the house arrest we are now under and the possible threat of the seizure of our computers and video cameras is a result of the 2004 success. We are asking the public to contact the office of St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman at 651-266-8510 to stop this house arrest, this gross intimidation by police officers, and the detention of media activists and reporters. That sounds like what it was: a cry for help from a hostage. Hours later, the Police finally obtained a search warrant - for the wrong house, one adjacent to the house where they were being detained - and nonetheless broke in, pointing guns, forced them to lay on the floor and handcuffed everyone inside (and handcuffed a National Lawyers Guild attorney outside). They searched the house, arrested nobody, and then left. Any rational person planning to protest the GOP Convention would, in light of this Government spying and these police raids, think twice - at least - about whether to do so. That is the point of the raids - to announce to citizens that they best stay in their homes and be good, quiet, meek, compliant people lest they want their homes to be invaded, their property seized, and have rifles pointed at them, too. Endquote. The rest of the story is here http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/index.html In history, the beginnings of really bad stuff all looked small. When actually the small stuff should have been a wake up call. How bad does it have to get before we act. That house could have been me or anyone who is politically active! The only time that evil triumphs is when good people step aside and do nothing. This is a case where we need political action. At the very least, voices speaking out on forums, in letters, in newspapers and to political leaders. I already know one person who is marching because of this, who was not planning to before.We need to change the law that allows weekends and labor days to be excluded from the 36 hour limit. In light of this and the incredibly long bad record of Sheriff Fletcher, we should dedicate our time to ensuring that someone else is elected. (I pledge one night a week, with occasional weeks off.) Lets all campaign and vote. If we love our freedom and our democracy, then each of us has to work to keep it. Grace Kelly nicknamed Kelly Curmudgeon from Merriam Park --22-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 14:26:01 -0500 From: Andy Driscoll <andy [at] driscollgroup.com> To: Truth To Tell This Week <truthtotell [at] driscollgroup.com> Subject: [StPaul-AN] Hauling away protesters in advance...still Phil Villaume is a pretty standard-looking lawyer, paunch and all. Why is he being searched at a sporting event? Hes also volunteering as a legal observer and on-call defense attorney for arrested demonstrators. Andy -- From: <pgvassoc [at] att.net> Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 Hi Andy: Your listeners should be calling the FBI and asking why this is being done. The $50 million allocated by congress for security for the RNC is controlled at the national level. The person in charge of all law enforcement and security for the convention is a female FBI agent whose name escapes me. The FBI is in charge of all of this. The same agent was in charge of the security in Denver. This kind of sweep has been in the workings for months and was not just planned last week. They have had informants in these organizations that have provided information that was the basis for the probable cause to get the warrants to search. This is nothing more than a large scale sting operation and the FBI, not local law enforcement, is calling all the shots. We see these kinds of "busts" in drug operations where alleged organized crime is involved all the time. This is nothing new to those of us that defend these cases. All you have here is a much broader scale. These teams are like SWAT teams that are trained in counter-terrorism "busts" all under the auspices of Homeland Security. I was at a sporting event last night and I was searched like never before. I knew it was all because of the RNC. I was patted down at an entrance to the Metrodome where they never pat you down. It was as extensive as the search we go through at the airport and this was for a sporting event. Why?? Because it is all part of what is going on. The citizens of Minnesota are going to have to live with this all week plus we taxpayers will pay for the cost of defending all the lawsuits that arise out of this type of police conduct. Those of us that are constitutional lawyers are ashamed when we see the First Amendment Right to Speech and Association trampled on. This has what we call a "chilling effect" on Free Speech. The purpose is to drive down the number of protesters on Monday. I hope they do not succeed. This is just the mere beginning. Phil Villaume --23x-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 15:00:36 -0500 (GMT-05:00) From: Guy Western <wtscs [at] mindspring.com> Subject: Re: [SPIF] Buckets of urine, slingshots, anti-bus weapons seized in raid on a... For the love of God, don't tell anyone, but I don't flush every time I pee. Since when does anyone need an "excuse" to have live pee in their home? So, here's what, I'm going out to the shed right now to bend some nails, and, starting today, I'm keeping some fresh pee in a bucket. So put the Department of Inspections on notice along with the FBI, and let's see who gets here first. Sweet Jesus, are we going to start having pre-emptive police raids on the homes of high school kids every year before Haloween to look for bags of dog poop, matches, and toilet paper? Will they have to be in combination in order to qualify as a conspiracy? Will the kids have to be from the same high school? I'm asking for a little perspective in a country that guarantees the right to have .50 caliber magnum handguns in every home. Now I need a note from Geheim Staatz Polizei for a gas mask? for bent nails? I could understand if there was evidence that led to a couple of pounds of gel-ignite, but you and Krenik and Spaulding are acting like this collection of junk is the long-awaited WMD. And what did they collect from the underground journalists: pencils AND paper. . . in the SAME HOME!? --24-- 5 arrested, dozens detained in pre-RNC raids Joe Garofoli, Chronicle Staff Writer Sunday, August 31, 2008 (08-31) 04:00 PDT St. Paul, Minn. -- Activists planning protests around the Republican National Convention say they are being targeted in a heavy-handed attempt to chill dissent after police arrested five people, detained dozens of others, and seized computers and protest guides in raids Friday night and Saturday on private homes and the major meeting center. The "RNC Welcoming Committee," an organization of dozens of activist groups and individuals from around the country, has been planning demonstrations for over a year at the convention. The largest, which activists said could draw up to 50,000 people, is scheduled for Monday, the opening day of the convention. At around 9:15 p.m. Friday, Ramsey County sheriffs and St. Paul police officers kicked in the door of a former theater in St. Paul that the group had rented as a central planning office, said Lisa Fithian, a nonviolence coordinator working with the protesters. They ordered the 50 people inside onto the floor, where they were handcuffed, photographed and asked for identification, then had their possessions searched. Police kept at least three laptops, plus schedules and 7,000 "welcoming guides" organizers planned to distribute to people coming to the Twin Cities for demonstrations, Fithian said. Those inside were released within two hours, she said. On Saturday, police raided four other homes and arrested five people. They were being held at the Hennepin County jail in Minneapolis Saturday on suspicion of conspiracy to riot, conspiracy to commit civil disorder and conspiracy to damage property. "The 'Welcoming Committee' is a criminal enterprise made up of 35 anarchists who are intent on committing criminal acts before and during the Republican National Convention," Ramsey County Sheriff Bob Fletcher said in a statement. "These acts include tactics to blockade and disable delegate buses, breaching venue security and injuring police officers. They have recruited assistance in their criminal conspiracy from other anarchists groups throughout the country." Activists who gathered Saturday evening at the Rivertown Events Center, where the Friday night raid occurred, said they were shaken by the raid but not deterred. Some shared stories - and photos - of police arresting and handcuffing other suspected activists around the area. "I think (Friday night's raid) was a scare tactic to not go to the big demonstration Monday," said Monica Trinidad, a 22-year-old University of Illinois at Chicago student who was handcuffed outside the center Friday night as she was returning to see what was going on. "But I don't think it's going to work." Hal Muskat, a 61-year-old San Franciscan and member of Veterans for Peace, said the arrests might attract even more protesters. "It was a tactic to try and take out the leaders," he said. "I know some people don't like to go out in the streets. But when anybody within a 12-hour drive hears about what's going on here, they're going to want to be here with us on Monday." E-mail Joe Garofoli at jgarofoli [at] sfchronicle.com. This article appeared on page A - 17 of the San Francisco Chronicle --25-- Date: Sun, 31 Aug 2008 17:52:21 -0400 From: Alan Muller <amuller [at] dca.net> To: St. Paul Issues Forum <stpaul-issues [at] forums.e-democracy.org> Subject: [SPIF] "Five Arrested, Dozens Detained in Pre-RNC Raids" Truthout.org has up an article from the San Francisco Chronicle : http://www.truthout.org/article/five-arrested-dozens-detained-pre-rnc-raids http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/08/30/MNQJ12LPN1.DTL I posted this comment: As a part-time resident of Minnesota I've been following local discussion of the convention and expected repressive measures for months. With Philadelphia and New York as examples, there's hardly been any mystery about what the "authorities" would do. The Twin Cities like to think of themselves as enlightened, civil, and progressive places. For the most part they seem so to me. But, obviously, St. Paul would not have become the convention site without prior agreement to do these shameful things. Deal with the Devil and you will probably get burned....Fascism to sell hotel rooms and meals is not a decision that will enhance a reputation and sense of community. But maybe most important is what this says about the Republican party--that it can only hold a convention by hiding behind fifty million dollars of repression. By harassing reporters and lawyers, hounding citizens....that IT, the Republican Party, is really the criminal conspiracy against peace and democracy. Can any of us imagine McCain or the lady from Alaska actually talking to any of the Welcoming Committee? Alan Muller N/A, Port Penn Info about Alan Muller: http://forums.e-democracy.org/p/alanmuller --26-- Published on Sunday, August 31, 2008 by Salon.com Massive Police Raids on Suspected Protestors in Minneapolis by Glenn Greenwald Common Dreams Protesters here in Minneapolis have been targeted by a series of highly intimidating, sweeping police raids across the city, involving teams of 25-30 officers in riot gear, with semi-automatic weapons drawn, entering homes of those suspected of planning protests, handcuffing and forcing them to lay on the floor, while law enforcement officers searched the homes, seizing computers, journals, and political pamphlets. Last night, members of the St. Paul police department and the Ramsey County sheriff's department handcuffed, photographed and detained dozens of people meeting at a public venue to plan a demonstration, charging them with no crime other than "fire code violations," and early this morning, the Sheriff's department sent teams of officers into at least four Minneapolis area homes where suspected protesters were staying. Jane Hamsher and I were at two of those homes this morning -- one which had just been raided and one which was in the process of being raided. Each of the raided houses is known by neighbors as a "hippie house," where 5-10 college-aged individuals live in a communal setting, and everyone we spoke with said that there had never been any problems of any kind in those houses, that they were filled with "peaceful kids" who are politically active but entirely unthreatening and friendly. Posted below is the video of the scene, including various interviews, which convey a very clear sense of what is actually going on here. In the house that had just been raided, those inside described how a team of roughly 25 officers had barged into their homes with masks and black swat gear, holding large semi-automatic rifles, and ordered them to lie on the floor, where they were handcuffed and ordered not to move. The officers refused to state why they were there and, until the very end, refused to show whether they had a search warrant. They were forced to remain on the floor for 45 minutes while the officers took away the laptops, computers, individual journals, and political materials kept in the house. One of the individuals renting the house, an 18-year-old woman, was extremely shaken as she and others described how the officers were deliberately making intimidating statements such as "Do you have Terminator ready?" as they lay on the floor in handcuffs. The 10 or so individuals in the house all said that though they found the experience very jarring, they still intended to protest against the GOP Convention, and several said that being subjected to raids of that sort made them more emboldened than ever to do so. Several of those who were arrested are being represented by Bruce Nestor, the President of the Minnesota chapter of the National Lawyers' Guild. Nestor said that last night's raid involved a meeting of a group calling itself the "RNC Welcoming Committee", and that this morning's raids appeared to target members of "Food Not Bombs," which he described as an anti-war, anti-authoritarian protest group. There was not a single act of violence or illegality that has taken place, Nestor said. Instead, the raids were purely anticipatory in nature, and clearly designed to frighten people contemplating taking part in any unauthorized protests. Nestor indicated that only 2 or 3 of the 50 individuals who were handcuffed this morning at the 2 houses were actually arrested and charged with a crime, and the crime they were charged with is "conspiracy to commit riot." Nestor, who has practiced law in Minnesota for many years, said that he had never before heard of that statute being used for anything, and that its parameters are so self-evidently vague, designed to allow pre-emeptive arrests of those who are peacefully protesting, that it is almost certainly unconstitutional, though because it had never been invoked (until now), its constitutionality had not been tested. There is clearly an intent on the part of law enforcement authorities here to engage in extreme and highly intimidating raids against those who are planning to protest the Convention. The DNC in Denver was the site of several quite ugly incidents where law enforcement acted on behalf of Democratic Party officials and the corporate elite that funded the Convention to keep the media and protesters from doing anything remotely off-script. But the massive and plainly excessive preemptive police raids in Minnesota are of a different order altogether. Targeting people with automatic-weapons-carrying SWAT teams and mass raids in their homes, who are suspected of nothing more than planning dissident political protests at a political convention and who have engaged in no illegal activity whatsoever, is about as redolent of the worst tactics of a police state as can be imagined. UPDATE: Here is the first of the videos, from the house that had just been raided: --27-- Date: Mon, 1 Sep 2008 09:25:38 -0500 From: Cam Gordon <camgordon333 [at] msn.com> To: Cam Gordon <cam [at] camgordon.org> Subject: Statement on Recent Law Enforcement Actions Targeting Protest Organizers Statement on Recent Law Enforcement Actions Targeting Protest Organizers from Minneapolis Council Members Cam Gordon and Elizabeth Glidden On Friday August 29th, a large, peaceful Critical Mass bike ride occurred in Minneapolis where protesters, passersby and police conducted themselves in a civil and respectful way - a hopeful beginning to the Republican National Convention and related protest events, marches, and citizen journalism. On Friday evening and Saturday morning, homes in Minneapolis and a place of assembly in St Paul were raided by law enforcement; residents were detained and property seized. These actions were initiated, to our knowledge, by the Ramsey County Sheriff's Office. Although we do not have the information available to law enforcement, we are concerned that the level of force used during these raids does not appear to match the alleged threat posed. The seizure of the Earth Activist Training Permaculture Demonstration Bus (Permibus), young activists pulled over in their van at Lake and 11th Ave and detained by law enforcement with weapons drawn, and other reported events are actions that appear excessive and create an atmosphere of fear and intimidation for those who wish to exercise their first amendment rights. During the challenging days ahead we urge a focus on creating a secure atmosphere of nonviolence that will allow and encourage people to participate in political speech. While violence and property damage by protesters or others should not be tolerated, neither should there be a chilling effect on free speech. We have been contacted by many who are concerned that their home or meeting place may be at risk because they are on an email list, attended a workshop or meeting, or helped feed and house out-of-town activists. We thank our Minneapolis police and others for their hard work to prepare for this momentous event and know - as evidenced by the Critical Mass ride this past Friday - that they are well able to keep the peace and respect first amendment rights of nonviolent protesters. Let's send the right message - with a focus on maintaining order and peace while creating a safe space for free speech and political expression. We encourage all residents and visitors to feel safe and welcome to express themselves and hope that everyone will show up on Labor Day at the State Capital to make their voices heard. Cam Gordon Minneapolis City Council Member, Second Ward 612 296-0579 Elizabeth Glidden Minneapolis City Council Member, Eighth Ward 612 673-2208 [Please call or email them with your support. -ed] ---------------------------------------------------------------------------- - David Shove shove001 [at] tc.umn.edu rhymes with clove Progressive Calendar over 2225 subscribers as of 12.19.02 please send all messages in plain text no attachments To GO DIRECTLY to an item, eg --------8 of x-------- do a find on --8 vote third party for president for congress now and forever
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