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Kerry, In Speech, Accuses White House of Suppressing Dissent

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posted on May, 8 2006 @ 12:39 AM
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Flip Flopper or not, atleast he's shedding light on an important issue right now. A lot of people are still encouraged by that sense of Patriotism, thus any dissent is unpatriotic.




posted on May, 8 2006 @ 01:49 AM
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It's sad the religious right and the neo-cons try to squash dissent in a country they won't send their kids to fight for. Not one conservative in congress has a son or daughter over there.

It's democrats that fight for freedom!

While conservatives hide behind women's skirts.



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 02:06 AM
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Okay, Seekerof, I did say I was not done because before I didn't have time to finish. But now, I am back.

First of all, I am going to post the legal column from John Dean. His take on what Kerry should do is interesting:


The New Book Attacking Kerry's War Record:How It Defames the Candidate, and Why He Should Sue

How should Kerry deal with the attacks? He should take a page from the playbook of the last U.S. Senator to receive his party's presidential nomination: Barry Goldwater, in 1964. Goldwater suffered the same type of attack, and set a precedent as to how to counter it: Sue. Never has a book been more deserving of a defamation lawsuit. And Kerry has several reasons to sue. One is to put these false claims to rest forever. The other is to deter future, similar claims.

Recall the absurd 1992 charges that Bill Clinton was running drugs and murdering people. Most people laughed, and Clinton chose to do nothing about the claims, during the election or after. But the Clintons paid a cost for not suing: Even more ridiculous charges - claiming Vince Foster's suicide was a murder, and so on - followed, and critics were emboldened to say anything they wanted about the Clintons, regardless of veracity.

Kerry should take a stand not only for himself, but for future candidates and elected officials. Factually baseless attacks knowingly designed to destroy political opponents should be culled from our system: Defamation law is meant to serve that purpose, and so it is time for Kerry to file suit.


According to votelaw.com, three organizations filed a complaint against the Swift Boat veterans for the ads:


votelaw.com

Three campaign finance watchdog groups filed a complaint Tuesday accusing a group of Vietnam veterans of violating the campaign finance law by airing an ad that challenges Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry's military record. Democracy 21, the Center for Responsive Politics and the Campaign Legal Center argue that the ad by Swift Boat Veterans for Truth violates a federal ban on the use of unlimited donations, often referred to as "soft money," to influence federal elections. The group bought $500,000 worth of airtime to run the ad in Wisconsin, Ohio and West Virginia.

In the ad, the group accuses Kerry, a decorated Vietnam veteran, of lying about his war record and betraying fellow veterans by later protesting the conflict. Veterans who served with Kerry on his swiftboat have said the group is lying, and Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona has called the ad "dishonest and dishonorable."

In the complaint to the Federal Election Commission, the watchdog groups argued that Swift Boat Veterans for Truth should have used only limited contributions from individuals known as hard money on the ad and should disclose its donations and spending in reports to the FEC.


Mr. Kerry did file a complaint with the Federal Election Commission against the Swift Boat Veterans:


Can Kerry make a case that Bush broke the law?
Nonetheless, the Kerry campaign filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission on Friday against the Swift Boat Veterans, accusing the group of "violating the law with inaccurate ads that are illegally coordinated with the Bush-Cheney presidential campaign and Republican National Committee."


And for people's information, FactCheck.org did a detailed analysis of whether the Swift Boat Veterans were accurate in their claims. They were not.

As of yet, Mr. Kerry has not filed a libel suit. So you're right in that effect. However, I believe that a case could be made why:

Doak: Kerry can serve his country again — Sue the Swift Boat Vets

The Swift Boat Veterans for Truth was the group that, among other charges, asserted that Kerry did not deserve the combat medals he was awarded by the Navy in Vietnam. The available evidence indicated the Swift Boat assertions were false.

For a public figure to win a libel suit, however, it is not sufficient to establish that the statements were false. The plaintiff must be able to prove that the statements were published with "actual malice." That is, the Swift Boat Veterans must have known the information was false or published it with reckless disregard for whether it was true or false.

Kerry would have a heavy burden of proof if he decided to sue, but he might be able to show at least a reckless disregard, perhaps even knowing falsehood. Statements made by some in the group apparently differed from statements they had made in the past.



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 02:06 AM
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Originally posted by bodebliss
It's sad the religious right and the neo-cons try to squash dissent in a country they won't send their kids to fight for. Not one conservative in congress has a son or daughter over there.


Prove that assertion, please.

To show you the true character of John Kerry, there is a quote from him that I will dig out and post here.

He had not made a stand on VN when he said, more or less:

"I had to decide whether it would be politically expedient to be for or against the Viet Nam war."



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 02:41 AM
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For everyone's information, I should post the definitions of libel and slander for everyone's information. As I read my beginning post, I may have used slander in the wrong context. So to be sure, I am turning to Black's Law to make the meaning accurate for everyone.


libel n.1. A defamatory statement expressed in a fixed medium, esp. writing but also a picture, sign, or electronic broadcast.

Garner, Bryan A., ed. Black's Law Dictionary. 2nd. Pocket edition. St. Paul, Minn.: West Group, 2001:417.




slander n. 1. A defamatory statement expressed in a transitory form, esp. speech. (Damages for slander--unlike those for libel--are not presumed and thus must be proved by the plaintiff [unless the defamation is slander per se])

Garner, Bryan A., ed. Black's Law Dictionary. 2nd. Pocket edition. St. Paul, Minn.: West Group, 2001:649-650.



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 02:53 AM
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To clarify about the libel, I'm sure that the Swift Boat Veterans used their GOP politically funded assets and put together a smear campaign against Kerry. I believe that "actual malice" has been done. But it is hard to prove. I could not say whether any statements held by the actual members of this group were made in a hateful light. On the other hand, the Swift Boat Veterans would have to actually have negatively emotional intent in their attack of Mr. Kerry's record.

I think to get this actually proven, there would have to be a witness to the actions of the Swift Boat Veterans in order to prove the claim of "actual malice". How else could one prove "actual malice"?

However, their actions are on the precipice of a slippery slope. When the leader of the Swift Boat Veterans (O'Neill is his last name) actively dares Mr. Kerry to "sue the group", that is probably one step over the line. And from what I researched about the facts of the case, Mr. Kerry should most definitely sue the group because it presents a strong case in which falsified facts and documents were combined to definitely derail his bid for the 2004 election.

What is equally telling about their comments against Mr. Kerry is that they are also implicated in Seekerof's statement of "slandering one soldier is slander against all". So, they are equally guilty of not staying true to their ideals of not selling out others in the military. However, money is the great seducer. And when there is money intended to promote a cause to hinder the opposition from taking power, anything is fair game.

The fact is that Mr. Kerry spoke on his feelings regarding the Vietnam war. He also spoke against the handling of the Iraqi War after realizing that his vote was cast in the wrong light. Is it not his First Amendment Right to say how he feels? I believe it is.

I just find it funny that for all the lip service paid to Mr. Kerry's "unpatrioticism" in terms of dissent, not one can deny he is more decorated than Bush, served more years in the military than Bush and did not flee from his tour of duty. And unlike Mr. Kerry, Mr. Bush has not one of his service companions speak up for him about his time in the Texas National Guard.

For shame.









[edit on 8-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 05:11 AM
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Kerry as President?
SSHHIIVVEERR

How would he ever make up his mind?
Would he veto a bill before he signed off on it?
Or sign it then veto it?



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 05:39 AM
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This seems to be a stifling of free speach and the right to assembly,



In order to provide security around the Staples Center, Los Angeles Convention Center (which housed print and radio media), and the large media contingent housed outside in a "Media Village", the LAPD, Los Angeles Fire Department and United States Secret Service designed a large secure zone surrounded by a perimeter fence consisting of K-rail barriers with a 10-foot fence rising up from it. The parking lots adjacent to the Staples Center were designated for the large Media Village (consisting of many trailers and media vehicles for the television press), transportation department vehicles, security checkpoints, as well as "VIP Vehicles" to be parked immediately in front of the Staples Center. As a result of this layout, the perimeter fence remained a city block away from the Staples Center, and placed the proposed space for the expected protestors (known as the "Protest Zone") a substantial distance from the event they were protesting. The proposed layout was diagramed and published by The Los Angeles Times.

Upon viewing the proposed layout, the protestors legally challenged the proposed fence route, winning a court judgement in their favor. As a result, the area for the VIP parking lot was moved elsewhere and the perimeter fence was redrawn to create a rectangular protest zone that stopped only a dozen yards short of the Staples Center entrance. This left only one open side of the protest zone for entrance and exit.

The protestors also won permission to set up a stage in the Protest Zone with sound amplification; and time on the stage was divided into hour-long segments and divided among the many groups wishing to bring up issues outside the convention. The LAPD was given permission take the stage and order the Protest Zone cleared if a civil disturbance was imminent.


The protesters had to go to court to uphold their rights, short of that their views would have not been heard by the target audience - Democratic delegates to the 2000 convention.

I guess dissent and the suppression of it is in the eye of the beholder and depends on the viewpoint of the mindset.

Both parties have been guilty of what John Kerry is asserting, however Mr. Kerry has proven time and again what the definition of hypocracy means.

His opinion means squat to me.


Wikipedia - 2000 Democratic Convention



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 05:42 AM
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Being steadfast, staying the course, is only useful and appreciated when the ship is going in the correct direction.

I'm quite sure the passengers on the Titanic would not have objected to a momentary course correction if it would have saved all their lives.

That said, I'm no Democrat, and I surely didn't vote for Kerry. Career politicians are a plague on this country...



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 07:01 AM
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The list of Bushes flipflops would take up pages...his most notible ones was his opposition to the 9/11 commission, department of homeland security (a dumbass idea he was right, probably by accident, to oppose) and Director of national intelligence, another dumbass idea)...so Kerry is not alone in this, all politicians straddle the fence, if only to keep their own rear ends covered. As for what Kerry said...He's correct and we all know it. But the Bush supporters here can't admit that so they take their lead from Karl Rove and attack the man instead.



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 01:02 PM
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Originally posted by jsobecky

Originally posted by bodebliss
It's sad the religious right and the neo-cons try to squash dissent in a country they won't send their kids to fight for. Not one conservative in congress has a son or daughter over there.


Prove that assertion, please.

To show you the true character of John Kerry, there is a quote from him that I will dig out and post here.

He had not made a stand on VN when he said, more or less:

"I had to decide whether it would be politically expedient to be for or against the Viet Nam war."



Representative Charles Rangel (D-New York), who served in the Korean War, called in late 2002 for a reinstatement of the draft, saying that such a draft would help the military meet its needs and also force political leaders to be more cautious.

"Decision-makers who support the war would more readily feel the pain of conflict and appreciate the sacrifice of those on the front lines if their children were there too," Rangel wrote in a January 7, 2003 op-ed piece (on-line here). "Minorities comprise 35 percent of the military and Blacks 20 percent, well above their proportion of the general population. They, along with poor and rural Whites do more than their fair share of service in our ground forces. Yet the value of our foot soldiers is demeaned by those who promote the unproven notion that high-tech warfare will bring a quick and easy victory in Iraq."

There are no studies tracking the number of politicians with children in the military. Surveys conducted for the Defense Department have find that young people who have better educational and career prospects are less likely to enter the military and that the children of educated, affluent parents were less likely to seriously consider military service, factors which could suggest that children of Congressmen would be less likely to enter the military themselves.

George W. Bush and Dick Cheney do not have children serving in the military.


There you Go!



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 01:32 PM
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from bodebliss

There you Go!

Where? I know it's a Monday, but... Where is it?

From your post:


There are no studies tracking the number of politicians with children in the military.

George W. Bush and Dick Cheney do not have children serving in the military.


Is this what you call proof?


Oh, btw... then next time you see Charlie, ask him, face to face, if he really supports a draft. Don't let him slide away before you get an answer.



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 01:59 PM
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Originally posted by ceci2006
To clarify about the libel, I'm sure that the Swift Boat Veterans used their GOP politically funded assets and put together a smear campaign against Kerry. I believe that "actual malice" has been done. But it is hard to prove.

Ah...therein lies the rub...proof, instead of "I feel" or "I think, therefore it must be".



I could not say whether any statements held by the actual members of this group were made in a hateful light. On the other hand, the Swift Boat Veterans would have to actually have negatively emotional intent in their attack of Mr. Kerry's record.

Negatively emotional intent? What does that mean? We must be careful to not hurt his feelings?



I think to get this actually proven, there would have to be a witness to the actions of the Swift Boat Veterans in order to prove the claim of "actual malice". How else could one prove "actual malice"?




When the leader of the Swift Boat Veterans (O'Neill is his last name) actively dares Mr. Kerry to "sue the group", that is probably one step over the line. And from what I researched about the facts of the case, Mr. Kerry should most definitely sue the group because it presents a strong case in which falsified facts and documents were combined to definitely derail his bid for the 2004 election.

Here's his number in DC:
Kerry

Call him and tell him you think he should sue. Let us know what happens, 'K?


The fact is that Mr. Kerry spoke on his feelings regarding the Vietnam war.

As I posted earlier, it was a political decision to speak against the war. It was because of the times.

He also spoke against the handling of the Iraqi War after realizing that his vote was cast in the wrong light.


What made him change his mind, I wonder? Maybe the fact that the '04 election was comin' up??



I just find it funny that for all the lip service paid to Mr. Kerry's "unpatrioticism" in terms of dissent, not one can deny he is more decorated than Bush, served more years in the military than Bush and did not flee from his tour of duty. And unlike Mr. Kerry, Mr. Bush has not one of his service companions speak up for him about his time in the Texas National Guard.


The real proof here, ceci, is how many guys would follow Kerry into battle? For every one you provide, I can easily provide ten that would refuse to.

He would be an absolute disaster as a Commander in Chief.

I hate Heinz ketchup.











[edit on 8-5-2006 by jsobecky]



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 03:30 PM
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All of their records aside, and more on the point..there are several things I am confused about.
Did or did not Sheehan and her rabble camp outside of President Bush's HOME with anti war signs and slogans like "Bush is a criminal?" .... Is this not dissent? Was it repressed?

Is it not also true that celebrities have called President Bush a War Criminal, Traitor and Coward? This was all over the news so where is the repression? Is this not also dissent?

Have not congressional leaders (Kennedy, Palosi, Boxer ETC) called President Bush names in open forum, called his administration the worse ever? Is this not also dissent? Was this too repressed?

If all of this was repressed then how did it wind up on the national news? If it was not repressed, what is this thread about other than Bush haters using it to bash Bush ..... Again...

The very premise of this thread is ridiculous to the sublime and anyone that just watches the local, regional or national news can see all of this for themselves. If it is being repressed, who are they keeping it from? People with no TV's or radios?

Oh yea, I get it now....sorry I was again confused....

All of you Liberal, Kerry lovers, well you can say anything you want anytime that you want to.
If we dare say anything to defend conservative rights, OH NO!!!! were are repressing you.....



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 07:13 PM
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Originally posted by Christian IX
Bush is a monkey, and I hope the next people who try to asassinate him succeed.


Why is such a statement allowed to be on the boards?

If Senator Kerry, Senator H. Clinton or her husband were to still hold the title of Commander-in-Chief, as much as I disagree with their points of view, I'd still be totally against a statement like this if it were directed towards them.

Grow-up Christain Nine or you'll end up in a federal prison bunking with "Bubba".

[edit on 8/5/06 by Intelearthling]



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 07:57 PM
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I believe what happened at the Democratic Convention in 2004 was child's play when compared to the crack down on dissent occuring during the Republican National Convention. Also citing wikipedia.com, they have listed not only a day-by-day analysis of the crackdowns that happened during the occasion. But also, they discussed what happened at "Guantanamo By The Hudson", the incarceration facility implemented by authorities to jail protesters.

See if you agree:


2004 Republican National Convention protest activity

The facility was a former bus garage on Pier 57 on the Hudson River in Manhattan, a three-story, block-long pier that has been converted into a temporary holding facility, though unfit for detention of prisoners. Arrested protesters have complained about extremely poor conditions describing it as overcrowded, dirty, and contaminated with oil and asbestos. People reported having suffered from smell, bad ventilation, and even chemical burns and rashes. Deputy Police Commissioner Paul J. Browne denied the accusations, pointing to the fact that ventilations and sanitation had been installed.

Numerous troubling cases were reported, notably:

* A 15-year-old diabetic girl on her way to a movie was arrested. [33]

* A former vice president of Morgan Stanley was arrested while riding her bicycle. [34]

* A 16-year-old protestor was lost to her mother for two days, even though her mother knew about and supported her daughter's participation. [35]

* Small pens were used to contain "30 to 40 people" at once. [36]

* Many people were detained longer than 24 hours on relatively trivial charges. [37][38] One was a 23-year-old Montreal student arrested for disorderly conduct and released three days later. "He says he spent a total of 57 hours between the pier and Central Booking, during which time he says he was moved 14 times and repeatedly handcuffed and shackled to other protesters as young as 15." [39]

The City reportedly refused to release the prisoners until a judge threatened to fine it for every extra hour every prisoner would spend in prison. The victims of the arrests have filled lawsuits against the City of New York.




[edit on 8-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 07:59 PM
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Originally posted by Intelearthling

Originally posted by Christian IX
Bush is a monkey, and I hope the next people who try to asassinate him succeed.


Why is such a statement allowed to be on the boards?

If Senator Kerry, Senator H. Clinton or her husband were to still hold the title of Commander-in-Chief, as much as I disagree with their points of view, I'd still be totally against a statement like this if it were directed towards them.

Grow-up Christain Nine or you'll end up in a federal prison bunking with "Bubba".


That's a fine line... I was completely shocked to read that, but at the same time, I suppose that he has the right. Though also, I guess we shouldn't talk about it.
*we are giving him needless attention*



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 08:20 PM
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jsobecky,

You're right. I can believe all I want in terms of actual malice being done. But just because I believe it doesn't make it so. I should have been more clear when stating my position on what "actual malice" means. Yes, Mr. Kerry, if he does sue, has to have prove that "reckless disregard for the truth". What constitutes "reckless disregard"? That vague terminology is left to the eye of the beholder.

As of "negatively emotional intent": you'll just have to chalk that up to bad wording.
Being the "wordy" sort that I am, sometimes I run out of descriptive phrases to describe my expository texts.

However, what has been proven is that Mr. Kerry's Navy records discount the allegations that the Swift Boat Veterans have made. When proving libel, this is not enough. And as I look it up, the very definition of libel changes with the State sanctioned rules of what a "public figure" is. It is fascinating to note that a public figure in Texas is not necessarily the same thing in New York. And of course, in California, a public figure is not the same as it is in Florida. Because there is not a simplified rule across the board explaining a "public figure", it would have to depend where Mr. Kerry files the case if he does.

And when that is defined, then by the rules sanctioned by that state, I would suppose that he would have to file charges of libel based on those rules of being a "public official".

And about speaking of the war: yes, it was a calculated, political decision. But at the same time, I sure he has a different view of Vietnam than those who have never served. There are probably soldiers that did not share his point of view. But then again, there are soldiers who might have had consistent experiences with Mr. Kerry. Of course, it was political because of what he saw during his tour of duty dictated his political position regarding warfare--whether it is Iraq or Vietnam. Vietnam was an unpopular war as Iraq is growing unpopular now. And I still think whether or not the public accepts his opinion, it is still his First Amendment Right to speak. And in his opinion, it should also be his right to question whether dissent is accepted in America.

You and I know from my thread about dissent is that the subject matter is meaningful and timely. And people should be able to question or praise governmental decisions without the fear of having their voices stifled. Anyone speaking their mind should not be branded traitors or unpatriotic if they express unfavorable things contrary to the opposition. So like it or not, it's not like shouting fire in a crowded room. Mr. Kerry should be able to say what he wants when he wants and reasonably address the concerns in a discursive manner.

As of Mr. Kerry's service record: His record shows how he "earned" each of his honors from the military. As of yet, I have not seen whether Mr. Bush has earned anything from his service. Not even an exemplary flight record. So, as you ask how many people would follow Mr. Kerry into battle, I find that a reasonable request. But I would ask, how many would follow Mr. Bush?

Whether Mr. Kerry would make an adequate Commander-in-Chief? That is still in the realm of speculation also. But are you arguing that he would have fared worse than Mr. Bush? The problem is, there is an actual record of how Mr. Bush continues to perform as Commander-in-Chief. And his record does present an invitation to engage in scrutiny. As of yet, all we can go on for Mr. Kerry are anecdotal stories and his military record, not to mention the books describing his military career in Vietnam. And until the full records from the Navy are released, we will fully never know the truth.

As for Heinz ketchup....personally, I prefer Del Monte. But that's just me.









[edit on 8-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 08:59 PM
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When I submitted this piece of news to ATNNS, I had no intention to smear Mr. Bush in any way. I thought that the item regarding Mr. Kerry's speech would be interesting to add to the debate about dissent. And for the most part, the posters on this thread have honored this request. They are investigating on both sides of the aisles the parameters of whether our rights to speak freely have been quashed or not.

For the most part, I think that we can discuss these issues with candor, passion and respect for one another. And that includes respect for our public figures as well. It doesn't matter whether myself or others discussing Mr. Kerry's position are "liberal lovers" or not. I have always found out in discussions with people here and in the "real world", you never actually know how a person stands unless they tell you. And when they do, you might be shocked about their opinions in the end. So name-calling never helps a conversation.

The main point of the article is whether it is true that we truly have dissent in this country or not. There are deeper questions that Mr. Kerry is trying to propose in his speech in Iowa. Is it right to speak against a war during wartime? Or should we stay silent and accept everything that the POTUS tells us whether it is true or false?

The problem is that the Iraq war, as it was during the Vietnam War, produces problematic questions to consider when dealing with this subject. And to not think about these things is simply being equated to having our heads in the sand. During this time, we cannot afford to quietly be afraid whether we are patriotic or not in the eyes of other American citizens. Instead, we should be more critical about all our public figures and take them to task if need be. And the main point is whether that type of speech is accepted in society.

Or better yet, should we be so in awe and fearful of our national leaders that we stay silent? Or should we embrace the democracy that the Founding Fathers envisioned for the country? Those are things that we all have to continue to negotiate during this time.

[edit on 8-5-2006 by ceci2006]



posted on May, 8 2006 @ 09:08 PM
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Wake up, it really does not matter who said it, the fact that is it is happening in this country, should be the matter of importance. If you have never understood the old saying, of shooting the messenger, then this is clearly what is happening here. You are shooting the messenger and forgetting the message.

I don't agree with what many of you say as I am sure many here do not agree with what I say, but the fact that we can say it without fear of retalliation is the important thing, we are losing that in this country and that is a horrible path to take or to choose to allow.

I have been called a bleeding heart liberal here many times but I can tell you this, I want the most conservative person here to be able to speak their politics and views as loudly as they want. I want them to be able to scream it if they want to without fear of retalliation, but what I see happening more and more is a total support by many conservatives of shushing the voices of dissent.

When the liberals are in office, the conservatives see it as their patriotic duty to speak up and point out what is wrong, as well they should, but they need to remember to realize that liberals, or conservatives, or indeed anyone who does not agree with what their government is doing should also be allowed to voice their cncerns and these voices need to be heard. That is what freedom is supposed to be about.

When one man's rights are trampled upon and that abuse is sanctioned by the people, then indeed all peoples rights in this country are in jeopardy. Wake up America your rights are being stolen under the guise of patriotism and the fear of terrorism, little by little, they will be stolen until you yourself worry about who is listening, and fear to speak your own views, your own truths.




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