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Criminalizing dissent? RNC protesters face felony terrorism charges

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posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 01:43 PM

Criminalizing dissent? RNC protesters face felony terrorism charges

Democracy Now's Amy Goodman talked to Luce Guillen-Givins who is one of the first people ever to be charged under the 2002 Minnesota version of the federal PATRIOT Act. Guillen-Givins and 7 other members of the group RNC Welcoming Committee — also known as the "RNC 8" — were formally charged with conspiracy to riot in furtherance of terrorism.
(visit the link for the full news article)

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posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 01:43 PM

The arrests are based on a 2002 law enacted with overwhelming bipartisan support in response to 9/11 and the adoption of the national USA Patriot Act. According to Nestor the Minnesota law is a version of the latter. According to the law, “a crime is committed to ‘further terrorism’ if the crime is a felony and is a premeditated act involving violence to persons or property that is intended to: (1) terrorize, intimidate, or coerce a considerable number of members of the public in addition to the direct victims of the act; and (2) significantly disrupt or interfere with the lawful exercise, operation, or conduct of government, lawful commerce, or the right of lawful assembly” (emphasis added).

In other words, the statute lays out a legal framework for the categorization of protest as “furthering terrorism.” Police could quite easily determine that a protest aims to “coerce” “members of the public” or “interfere with” the operations of government, industry and meetings. In a broad sense, that is precisely what public demonstrations have always aimed to do.

The passing of the 2002 legislation was not the only, or most recent, preparation made by the government for the repression that has unfolded in St. Paul.

It has been revealed that the city government of St. Paul and the Host Committee of the Republican National Convention—which organized the event and solicited corporate donors—worked out a bargain whereby the Host Committee would assume the first $10 million in liability resulting from lawsuits civilians might launch against the city’s police. This agreement gave a signal to police that financial liability need not serve as a deterrent to police repression of protests.

The U.S. attorney for Minnesota, Tom Heffelfinger, says terrorism investigations often need to be kept secret. And he says federal investigators are not conducting fishing expeditions.

"We have to make a factual showing, and that factual showing has to be endorsed by a judge of the intelligence court," says Heffelfinger.

The intelligence court is a special panel appointed by the Supreme Court to oversee investigations into terrorism and espionage. It was established by the Foreign Intelligence Security Act, or FISA.

Last year, federal authorities asked for permission to conduct secret investigations more than 1,200 times. That's a 30 percent increase from the previous year. Nearly all the requests were granted.

No MSM coverage, gee what a surprise.

And that's part of the problem. When the mass public see the injustice of these charges which label a typical act of protest as an act of terrorism, I'll bet the charges will be dropped!

They are trying to set a precedent for the courts to use in future cases. So it is imperative that this news get spread far and wide!

And exactly what we said would happen is happening with the Patriot Act and similar state legislation: ABUSE to silence political dissent.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 02:07 PM
Great post S&F,
It seems like every day the very rights that make this country great are being taken away. If we no longer have the right to peaceful protest, then whats next? We need this right so the government can't go unchecked. That goes for the fairness docterine. Political party aside, the slap in the face to the 2nd amendment should not be tolerated. THE PEOPLE NEED A VOICE!


posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 02:22 PM
The political parties have made it their business to become the key-controlling influence in local justice systems all across the nation.

Notice, they have been charged with 4 felony counts; two including the word 'terrorism' and two identical charges which do not include the word 'terrorism.'

How much you wanna bet they drop the 'terrorism' charges?

Great find!

[edit on 19-2-2009 by Maxmars]

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 03:05 PM

What in the heck is up with Rawstory? When I first saw this story just a while ago, they had the full OP headline title on the homepage. But now they have changed it to:

RNC protesters face felony charges

So they intentionally took out the word "terrorism," but that still remains as the story headline once you click on it! And it still remains as part of the charges against these protesters! :shk: Something is up with this, and I don't like it. Let's call a spade a spade Rawstory!

[edit on Thu Feb 19th 2009 by TrueAmerican]

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 03:11 PM
An idea that came to me a while ago, concerning the lack of free press, is to actually get a group several million people across the country, like ats minded, and start your own, people run, with the board being jury duty, owned by all the contributors, to clue the public in. And don't back down no matter what, just get bigger and bigger, spanning country after country.

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 03:21 PM
reply to post by TrueAmerican

Is Rawstory one of those "Murdoch" news organizations? Things that make you go hmmm.....


I like the idea, but how will we know if some coordinated disinfo operations make their way into the ranks? This story, like few others, shows the kind of criminal mindset the establishment holds about 'getting the enemy' - even if they have to infiltrate, instigate, or actually perpetrate the crime they want to charge you for themselves.

It's like the FBI guy who procured, and constructed the bomb for the 1st World Trade Center bombing. Even HE couldn't believe they had him make an actual working explosive device for the bad guys. All in the name of 'freedom' and 'security.'

[edit on 19-2-2009 by Maxmars]

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 05:06 PM
reply to post by MysterE

Peaceful protest???? I am sorry but I was there and witnessed this and yes there were a few peacefull moments but the majority wanted to see how much stuff they could break. Believe me both sides here are lying about stuff, there was a lot of damage done down there and of course there should be charges.

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 05:21 PM
The dumbing down of Americans has been an incredciable success. We here (at this blog) know where most of this is headed and many of the evil reasons this is being orchistrated in very high places. Control for those who can't control their lives anymore and for us who refuse this NWO, well lets just say it want be pretty. Only a fool would live a lie either out ignorance or fear, the results are still the same. Zombies are dead robots.... welcome to the USA.

If you shoot me shoot me through the heart for it continues to be a bed of deceit.

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 06:29 PM

Violates the 1st amendment.


So F#$% off you law lubbin' girlie men!

Originally posted by Cool Breeze
reply to post by MysterE

Peaceful protest???? I am sorry but I was there and witnessed this and yes there were a few peacefull moments but the majority wanted to see how much stuff they could break. Believe me both sides here are lying about stuff, there was a lot of damage done down there and of course there should be charges.

Could you distinguish between the pooohlice provocateurs and legitimate protestors?

That's just one video of many.. much evidence on this subject. Wouldn't it be great if the provocateurs were accidentally 'sneaked away' and given an absolute crap beating

[edit on 19/2/09 by GhostR1der]

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 08:42 PM
and so it begins and the sheeple will just lay down and get shorn,this is disgusting ,I blame my parents they are ones that went all Capitalist on us,and threw the labor unions under the bus and decided they wanted to surrender all their rights to be safe. Now who is going to save us from the ones who are keeping us safe?

How bad can it get? Can you say North Korea? or how about Swat?

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 10:15 PM
It really seems that if they get convicted it will instantly change the definition of terrorism. Next thing you know prosecuting attorneys will be using this as an example of terrorism.
Don't let these people change the meaning of an already broad term.

Its only a matter of time before this is the "ANGRY TERRORIST SPOT".com

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 10:32 PM
key words to me
"or coerce a considerable number of members of the public in addition to the direct victims of the act; "


that means basically any protest is ilegal,,,,,]

and that statement is so vague they can basically use it for any group or gathering and win in court

this is disgusting

also,,,,,by that statement the following gatherings should be prosecuted

local PTO's or PTA's at schools
any hobby clubs
radio stations,,on air political personaLITIES
any gathering or fundraisers
such as cancer walks

where does it end
and when do we finally draw a line in the sand????????

i am floored,,,,how did we get here

washington said-----a republic, mam,, if you can keep it

p.s. i think we lost it
[edit on 19-2-2009 by shortywarn]

[edit on 19-2-2009 by shortywarn]

posted on Feb, 19 2009 @ 11:08 PM

Originally posted by Cool Breeze
Peaceful protest???? I am sorry but I was there and witnessed this and yes there were a few peacefull moments but the majority wanted to see how much stuff they could break. Believe me both sides here are lying about stuff, there was a lot of damage done down there and of course there should be charges.

What you are saying is entirely untrue, period. The majority were peaceful, and hundreds were arrested without cause, while the police arbitrarily made up charges on the spot.

Plus there were most likely agent provocateurs causing some of the damage, as at least one from the DNC was already exposed too. Besides, the authorities raided houses before the convention even began, seizing harmless items like water in buckets which they claimed to be urine although it wasn't. They also used tactics appearing to be for the purpose of trapping or provoking peaceful protestors. For instance, they would tell people to disperse, and then block every street around them when they tried to follow orders and disperse.

In addition, there was quite a bit of police brutality dished out. From the very peaceful young woman who was assaulted with bicycles by cops, to the 17-year-old beaten by several cops, to the 19-year-old who believably says he was tortured in jail by about a dozen cops. I have seen the videos where other inmates talk about the screams they heard. It seems to me it's the police who were out of control.

Unless you were in every spot at every moment, you could not know what was happening all over the entire protest area. And the fact that you would spread such disinformation makes me think you didn't read very much about the RNC protests, either.

There are many videos on YouTube from the RNC. Plus the documentary on the RNC 8, called Terrorizing Dissent, is available for free online:
Terrorizing Dissent link

[edit on 19-2-2009 by wintermarches]

posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 02:49 AM
Section 802 anyone?

Almost anything can be defined as terrorism now. I'm looking forward to my cold cage and beatings for accessing ATS some time soon.

[edit on 20/2/2009 by RubberBaron]

posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 04:59 AM
Wowza, is Rawstory actually listening to ATS? *applause* Well, sort of. I can't say I would be surprised, seeing as writers at ATS have been using them as a source for stories for years, and simple server stats will show the links back to ATS.

They have now changed the title of the story (again) on the homepage to:

Arrested RNC protesters face felony terror charges

Now isn't that sneaky! Felony "terror" charges. I wonder who they are negotiating with that settled on this compromise? It still feels watered down.

It's almost the same, but not quite. Notice how they STILL are not including the full word "terrorism," until you click on the story, which still uses the full word, and is unchanged from the original title of the story.

With all the story retitling, clearly someone has got to be giving them some flack over this. It doesn't seem to be a space issue to accommodate other stories on their homepage, because:

RNC protesters face felony terrorism charges

works just as well, is more accurate, and takes up roughly the same amount of space- a single line which reduces it to a minimum. Very weird!

So, my challenge to Rawstory editors:
If you are listening old pals, how about registering here and giving us an explanation of what in the heck is going on! Thanks.

RoFL! They just changed it AGAIN!

Arrested RNC protesters are facing felony terror charges

[edit on Fri Feb 20th 2009 by TrueAmerican]

posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 05:38 AM
Excellent job here, TA, Flag & Stars!

Police are asserting themselves and their presence more than ever before.
I have seen the evolution law enforcement has undertaken from Barney Fife; all the way up to full militant, intelligence-gathering, battle hardened & ready, swat-esque soldiers. So their despicable tactics at the RNC don't surprise me, they just disgust me.

As a teen in the 70's, we could talk, joke around, and even debate or argue with cops a little. They stood back, out of respect for our rights, and actually listened to our input, sometimes agreeing, and even hanging out with us until a call on the radio beckoned them away...they were friendly, and wanted a good repoire with us, as long as we were somewhat respectful in return.

I (we) are facing the reality that those days are gone for good. They seem to be directed by a new, 21st century mandate of 'suspect & question EVERYONE', arrest MOST of 'em, let the judge decide about them...and we know who controls the judges.

[edit on 2/20/2009 by FRIGHTENER]

posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 06:54 AM
I don't believe they are giving everyone who showed up to protest felony charges. They are giving the "welcoming committee" the felony charges. If you go back and read their mission statements, they had the intent to cause damage. Not only did they have the intent, but they did riot and cause damage.

The other hundreds of people aren't being tried for felony charges, as they should not be. They were peaceful protesters.

Terrorism charges, on the other hand, are a bit absurd.

posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 07:14 AM
The main problem is a media that is totally in the tank for democrats. Most major news people have admitted as much. If squashing dissent will help the democrats or Obama, the media will go along with it (except maybe Fox). The media we have today is nothing more than a democrat propaganda machine. So, don't look for them to report on this.

Hell, MSNBC is the worst and they run banners on ATS. How does that jive with the ATS community? The fact that ATS is sponsored by a known propaganda network?

[edit on 20-2-2009 by Kyūzō]

posted on Feb, 20 2009 @ 08:11 AM
You can submit articles to indymedia

Have an article published on indymedia

Freedom not Fear - Perhaps such demonstrations should become more global and happen more often.

I'm from the UK and I believe it's time we linked up to let our governments and the NWO know what we think about the way we're being treated.

[edit on 20-2-2009 by BetweenMyths]

[edit on 20-2-2009 by BetweenMyths]

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