Marcus From Mexico, joined Apr 2001, 1819 posts, RR: 1 Posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 1527 times:
Do you think it will pass?...............................
By Lee Douglas
PORTLAND, Oregon (Reuters) - An Oregon anti-terrorism bill would jail street- blocking protesters for at least 25 years in a thinly veiled effort to discourage anti-war demonstrations, critics say.
The bill has met strong opposition but lawmakers still expect a debate on the definition of terrorism and the value of free speech before a vote by the state senate judiciary committee (news - web sites), whose Chairman, Republican Senator John Minnis, wrote the proposed legislation.
Dubbed Senate Bill 742, it identifies a terrorist as a person who "plans or participates in an act that is intended, by at least one of its participants, to disrupt" business, transportation, schools, government, or free assembly.
The bill's few public supporters say police need stronger laws to break up protests that have created havoc in cities like Portland, where thousands of people have marched and demonstrated against war in Iraq (news - web sites) since last fall.
"We need some additional tools to control protests that shut down the city," said Lars Larson, a conservative radio talk show host who has aggressively stumped for the bill.
Larson said protesters should be protected by free speech laws, but not given free reign to hold up ambulances or frighten people out of their daily routines, adding that police and the court system could be trusted to see the difference.
"Right now a group of people can get together and go downtown and block a freeway," Larson said. "You need a tool to deal with that."
The bill contains automatic sentences of 25 years to life for the crime of terrorism.
Critics of the bill say its language is so vague it erodes basic freedoms in the name of fighting terrorism under an extremely broad definition.
"Under the original version (terrorism) meant essentially a food fight," said Andrea Meyer of the American Civil Liberties Union (news - web sites) (ACLU), which opposes the bill.
Police unions and minority groups also oppose the bill for fear it could have a chilling effect on relations between police and poor people, minorities, children and "vulnerable" populations.
Legislators say the bill stands little chance of passage.
"I just don't think this bill is ever going to get out of committee," said Democratic Senator Vicki Walker, one of four members on the six-person panel who have said they oppose the legislation.
JetService From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 4798 posts, RR: 11
Reply 3, posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 1506 times:
25 years is WAAAAAAAAAAAY too harsh. They just need to make it a felony with one year sentence. First offense would have all but 30 days suspended. I bet that would make a lot of them consider protesting peacefully.
Goingboeing From United States of America, joined Dec 1999, 4875 posts, RR: 16
Reply 4, posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 1504 times:
I have no problem with the proposed law - if they will jail all the pro war folks attending the homecoming parades. After all, they tend to block streets to hold those.
I swear, the USA has become so "sensitive" to everything. Vietnam vets were treated like dog shit back in the 60's and 70's. It was flat out wrong, but they were. Now, so that we don't bring back those bad memories, we label anyone who opposes this war as "unpatriotic" or "not supporting our troops" or "terrorists" or worst of all - "liberal democrats".
STT757 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 17044 posts, RR: 50
Reply 5, posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 1502 times:
You cannot block traffic, by blocking traffic you are interfering with the Municipalities ability to respond to Medical emergencies, police incidents or fires.
Your also disrupting inocent peoples lives, these protestors have every right to protest and speak their mind (which they do), but they have no right to block the streets so that people who get up before dawn, spend two hours driving to work, work a 8-9 hour day have to have their commute home (where children , dinner and housework need to be attended to) because some beatnicks want to get on CNN.
Most of the protesters are from out of town, they come in and disrupt the lives and busineses of locals.
They have every right to assemble, they have no right to disrupt and create dangerous situations by blocking roads.
God forbid there's a fire and these assholes are blocking the way, they would be responsible for loss of life.
If they really cared about "life" they would take such things into account before taking such reckless and endagering actions.
File for a permit to march or assemble in a park, do not block a major intersection.
Heavymetal From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 1499 times:
I think you need read no farther than this...
We need some additional tools to control
Yah, mein fuhrer.
This is just another publicity stunt from some suckhole right wing radio loser whose career degraded to the point where he had to pander to cranky conservatives on talk radio because he sucked at intro'ing Richard Marx records on FM.
Staffan From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 9, posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 1488 times:
Sweden is considering a law that makes it forbidden to disguise your face during a protest. This would make it easier to identify and charge the ones who can't do it in a manored way, a good thing.
25 years is too much, but send them in for a short sentance if they can't behave.
4holer From United States of America, joined Feb 2002, 3081 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 1485 times:
It's an absurd idea.
But those who intentionally block any street should do time under existing laws, which enforced with some teeth in it, would do the same thing without making yourself and your constituents a laughingstock.
Definition: Knee jerk reaction: See above article.
Arrow From Canada, joined Jun 2002, 2676 posts, RR: 2
Reply 11, posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 1458 times:
Do you guys like what's happening to your democracy?
My guess is that Portland and other cities have countless by-laws that serve perfectly well to move people off the street if they are blocking traffic or otherwise getting in the way. Americans have been protesting in the streets for decades about one issue or another. How come all of a sudden they have to be branded terrorists and subjected to a draconian piece of legislation? I mean, 25 years for Crissakes!
If this becomes law -- Martin Luther King could be retroactively declared a terrorist.
You are on a very scary, very slippery slope here folks. Welcome to 1984.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good story.
Dc10guy From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 2685 posts, RR: 6
Reply 14, posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1442 times:
I have said this from the begining... The Bush admin. needs to build "camps" where protesters and the like can be taken . At the camp the anti-war types can be taught the errors of thier ways .... This will end this costly problem.
Next time try the old "dirty Sanchez" She'll love it !!!
Jaysit From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1415 times:
Predictably this bill will fall into the intellectual sinkhole that spawned fool of the week, state Republican Senator John Minnis who wrote the proposed legislation.
I can't believe we are even debating it - on this forum, or in the Oregon legislature. Very few, even in the Republican party will buy this junk because it cuts both ways. Protest rallies are held by those of all persuasions (for and against abortion for instance), and marching to the steps of a legislative body to demand justice is a hallmark of free American politics. When we have an anti-abortion rally in Washington, DC, for instance, traffic gets snarled and the city is a mess. As in any protest rally, we have law enforcement officials to ensure that traffic moves and business goes on while the protestors exercise their fundamental rights. Tragic to see that the party that advocates free-market economics does its damndest to advocate for the worst form of constitutional violations.
Thumper From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 550 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (12 years 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1396 times:
David B.: Does the words "Freedom of expression" mean anything to you or are you brainwash by the Bush adenine?
Yah, mein fuhrer tahh agee
Where does it say anything about Bush? This is an Oregon anti- terrorism bill sponsored by an Oregon Senator and a radio talk show host. It is very stupid to even consider something so radical. People have the right to protest but do not have the right to block streets and become disruptive. If they become violent I would agree 30 days would be enough.