Entry for August 22, 2007

Made a pizza for dinner and we watched Est-Ouest (see poster above) after attending the vigil.

Since there was little coverage, you may have missed news that the federal court awarded $80,000 to a couple who had been arrested July 4, 2004 in Charleston for wearing anti-Bush t-shirts or that the suit led to disclosure of a manual squelching or displacing protests at presidential appearances. See this link.

White House spokesman Blair Jones had to spin the decision: “We are pleased that this matter has been concluded. The parties understand that this settlement is a compromise of disputed claims to avoid the expenses and risks of litigation and is not an admission of fault, liability, or wrongful conduct.”

Yeah, right. During a July 4, 2004 Indpendence Day celebration in Charleston featuring an appearance by the president, police, acting on instructions from the Secret Service, removed Nicole and Jeff Rank in handcuffs. Their supposed crime: revealing T-shirts with President Bush’s name crossed out on the front and Niclole’s “Love America, Hate Bush” and Jeff’s “Regime change starts at home” on the back.

Nicole, is a registered Democrat who temporarily lost her position with FEMA. Jeff, a Republican, explained their action: “When you see the president speak on TV he is usually shown surrounded by fervent supporters only. While we wanted to hear him out and while we wanted to see him in person, we did not want to be added to the tally of Bush supporters that day.”

Of course those wearing pro-Bush t-shirts got to stay.

A municipal judge had dimissed the charges, ruling that city trespassing ordinances do not apply to Statehouse grounds. Charleston’s mayor, a Republican apologized, as did city council. The secret service denied it had prompted the arrests.

The American Civil Liberties Union suit filed in federal court named Gregory Jenkins, deputy assistant to the president and director of the White House Office of Presidential Advance, and W. Ralph Basham, director of the U.S. Secret Service, as defendants.

Now, according to the Washington Post, the suit has uncovered a manual outlining how protest is squelched or displaced away from Bush events. See today’s Post’s for its details on the manual.

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Marc and I dropped the car off at the Swedish Pit, in hopes that they’d repair anything that would prevent me from getting home. Started reading his Golem Song.

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