Friday, September 09, 2005

[politics] More on the Pentagon's so-called Freedom March

It's sounding more and more... totalitarian:
The march, sponsored by the Department of Defense, will wend its way from the Pentagon to the Mall along a route that has not been specified but will be lined with four-foot-high snow fencing to keep it closed and "sterile," said Allison Barber, deputy assistant secretary of defense. The U.S. Park Police will have its entire Washington force of several hundred on duty and along the route, on foot, horseback and motorcycles and monitoring from above by helicopter. Officers are prepared to arrest anyone who joins the march or concert without a credential and refuses to leave, said Park Police Chief Dwight E. Pettiford. What's unusual for an event on the Mall is the combination of fences, required preregistration and the threat of arrest. [...] One restricted group will be the media, whose members will not be allowed to walk along the march route. Reporters and cameras are restricted to three enclosed areas along the route but are not permitted to walk alongside participants walking from the Pentagon, across the Memorial Bridge to the Mall.
WTF? This is what we're fighting for in the so-called Global War on Terror? The 'right' to assemble peaceably on the National Mall while being restrained by fences, surveyed intently by the cops, and forced to register our names and addresses? Oh, and all the while denying the media access? These idiots really have forgotten their oath: "...I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same..." [Thanks to Chris at AMERICABlog] Updated to include press reference - I'd missed that before, then I saw it on Atrios

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