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Civil Society Groups Warn Against Anti-Protest Legislation Following Siege of US Capital

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2021/01/08/civil-society-groups-warn-against-anti-protest-legislation-following-siege-us

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In my college town in Florida almost all protests are coordinated with the police and mayor’s office, along with university officials if campus properties are to be involved. The only incidents I can recall in the recent past have involved motorists from out of town trying to “prove a point of dissent” with the message of the protest. Otherwise, the police cordon off routes that are for the most part carefully followed peacefully, but vociferously, by the protestors. The message is made, the peace is kept, and few are injured. It’s nice to live in a mostly blue city, even if our representation in DC is based upon a Rorschach ink blot of gerrymandering in solid red.


How about Anti-Terrorist Legislation, and let the wording be written by the ACLU, Common Dreams, Mother Jones, In These Times, Common Cause, etc, working together. I’d go for that.


Over-reactors and advantage-seekers always emerge following an event that threatens their illusion that “this could never happen here” or offers them an opportunity to advance their political agenda. Remember what happened after 9/11. This article is a timely reminder that I hope the ACLU and other civil rights organizations will read and heed. They must watch for attempts to constrain our First Amendment rights and defend them against unnecessary limitations. Law enforcer’s inadequate preparation, provocation, and over-response is the problem, not the First Amendment rights that are so hard won and too easily lost.


How could the Capitol police officers not have had a prepared and practiced operational plan for blocking access to the corridors and stairways leading to the Senate and House chambers and offices? My expectation that the federal government is prepared and competent to prevent or respond to a crisis has taken another hit. DC could certainly use some of your officials, but I imagine you want to keep them in Florida.

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Those who push the envelope till it breaks, literally, deserve to learn firsthand what prolonged incarceration is like.

Anyone who traveled more than 20 miles to storm the Capitol on Wednesday, deserve to be charged with all applicable laws pertaining to insurrection.

The gallows erected on the mall by the mob could have been used to deal out Trump’s punishment for his traitorous actions which led to the blood of others, before being taken down.

I also give great credit to the protest leaders who know that the First Amendment is intrinsically bound to an implicit respect for Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness, no matter how pissed off one may be.


Anti-Protest Legislation is the logical response by a reactionary government.
A fortified Capitol is proof for the world to see that the American People have been robbed of their House…


3:35 PM, east coast:

The events on December 6 showcased preferential treatment by law enforcement for white supremacist groups. “The tanks, batons, and tear gas rounds aggressively used against BLM protesters this summer were conspicuously absent when these white supremacists stormed the capitol building,” says Hansford.

Copy editing of “Dec” to “Jan” is order.

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Authoritarians never let a tragedy go to waste


This was obviously a failure of the Capitol police to act; which in itself is suspicious. If they didn’t have anyone at the rally who heard Trump and Giuliani’s call for aggression, it would be astonishing. With that knowledge the building should have been locked down before they arrived. Considering the nature of Trump’s crowds and stated intentions to stop the certification; the building should have been closed to outsiders anyway. And riot police in place as backups, inside the building.

There are plenty of criminal laws to cover what transpired there needs to be no more. Unfortunately some politicians when there is some disaster think it makes them look effective if they pass some unnecessary and maybe draconian law. It how they strut their stuff.

The ultimate irony was that as mayor of New York City Giuliani was a draconian law and order fanatic, instituting the infamous stop and frisk policy. This allowed the police to stop and frisk anyone they considered “suspicious”. Guess what color “suspicious” covered; not affluent white folk in suits.

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Never let an opportunity go to waste. Biden is famous for his drug, patriot act and now this is on the menu.


“While we condemn these crimes against democracy, such antics cannot be used to justify new repressive measures against actual protests, restrictions of the right of peaceful assembly, or curtailment of speech[…]”

But recent history shows that this is exactly what they intend, that curbing our freedom of expression is now seen as necessary by our dear leaders. Containment of the problems they have created is their primary goal, not changing course from the destructive neo-liberalism agenda responsible.

One thing to be grateful for, however. Biden is incapable of serving as a sophisticated cover for the fraud, criminality and complete unaccountability of the ruling elite - or the destructive path their neo-liberalism has put us on. I hope in coming weeks and months for greater exposure of this fraud.

Victory Update--------with Sarah Palin-----on UTUBE------push the Antifa BS-------???—Why UTUBE do YOU push lies but won’t let people comment on all the BS YOU push.

The internet should be public along with UTUBE-----and there should be a real way to challenge people who out right lie.

Repeal the Patriot Act-----start putting money where it really helps people and not a bunch corporate tools.


Repression of dissent - even brutal repression of dissent, seems to pump up FDI, (foreign direct investment.)

Look at the case of China. Right after the bloody crackdown of the pro-democracy movement, lots of money was invested in China. More money than has been invested in any country before or since.

You can see China’s present Defense Minister mention this at a talk he gave at the Shangri-La Dialogue, a regional security meeting in Singapore last year. He seemed to draw a connection between the two.

Its also significant in that it seems like the first time I know of where a PRC official even acknowledged that the massacre (probably of around 10,000 people) even happened.

Let’s look at the wording first.

Bravo for some part of the general sense of this. However----

  • Not only White supremacists marched on the nation’s capitol or imagine that the election was bogus.
  • In a mob, there are typically many motivations and points of view
  • Whatever Chip Gibbons may be getting correct about the events, they are not generally intended by participants as an attack on democracy. After two running fraudulent nominations in the Democratic Party, many people believe, rightly or wrongly that the general election was fraudulent. The Republican case has been worse than weak, but their are other possible reasons for that.
  • I do not know that Davis-Cohen intends to conflate anarchism with these actions, let alone racism, but it seems like to should have been worth specific mention that these are not related.

People can be protestors and even oppressed by government without our particularly agreeing with their points of view. Davis-Cohen and the civil rights groups that he cites are absolutely correct to object to the imposition of fresh legislation to quell dissent.

Existing and pending trade deals seem to me to be trading away the future jobs of many Americans (because wages are seen as too high, especially in professionals jobs, the jobs of tens of millions or more, unless wages fall more than they legally can now)

so I can see how the powers that be would see this as a time to suppress any kind of discussion, since that discussion we should have had, its never been had. And online fora like this one aren’t exactly doing their jobs on this either.

Its a historic failure of the media.