Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2004/09/10

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Subject: [Leica] Protests, Photographers, and the Police
From: msmall at (Marc James Small)
Date: Fri Sep 10 15:45:19 2004
References: <007801c4968a$1c02b810$> <> <007801c4968a$1c02b810$>

This is a terribly divisive issue.

On the one hand, there is that right of the public, enshrined in the US
Constitution, that "Congress shall make no law respecting  ....the right of
the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a
redress of grievances." (First Amendment, for those who are curious.)  This
"right" is restricted as follows:

--  it applied originally only to the Federal government and not to the
states.  I believe that this Amendment is one which has been co-opted under
the Fourteenth Amendment to apply to the states as well, a dubious legal
conclusion but binding for the nonce.

--  the "people" must "peaceably" assemble and petition.

On the other hand, the Supreme Court has stated, time and again, that local
authorities may direct that protests and demonstrations only be held in
certain areas, and the New York authorities designated such an area which
the "protestors" immediately violated.

Now, in the case of the Republican National Convention in New York City,
the protestors were hardly "peacably assembled" -- one of them beat the
crap out of a New York City police officer and put him in the hospital and
many, if not most, refused to stay within the boundaries of the designated
area for demonstrators.

I am a product of the Sixties and have no problem with folks who choose to
dress in alternate-lifestyle mode.  However, given that the average US
voter is a rather staid soul, I am troubled by just what these guys are
attempting to accomplish, as most of those who see demonstrations by oddly
dressed, oddly acting folks will certainly be encouraged to vote against
whatever position these guys are taking.  In the end, the issue is a
non-starter.  No one inclined to vote for Bush was swayed by these idiots
.. er, "protestors".. to vote against him.  I doubt that any of those
undecided "fence-sitters" were swayed,. as well.  The protests were a
foolish exercize of energy by those who should properly be applying their
energies to the good of the society or for their own personal advancement,
such as working to earn money to be able to bathe.

I am still confused why photographers wish to take pictures of such
activities.  The protests are of only margial interest, the protesors have
been a banal factor for the past forty years, and there were far more
interesting things going on -- I strrongly suspect that there were better
pictures to be taken of assignations between delegates and the like, for
those of you with a prurient mind.

But,again, what sort of person would want to photograph a polical
convention, much less a protest against a convention!

Marc  FAX:  +540/343-7315
Cha robh b?s fir gun ghr?s fir!

Replies: Reply from abridge at (Adam Bridge) ([Leica] Protests, Photographers, and the Police)
In reply to: Message from jon.stanton at (Jon) ([Leica] From Editor and Publisher: Reporters hasseled at RNC)
Message from MCyclWritr at ( ([Leica] From Editor and Publisher: Reporters hasseled at RNC)
Message from kenf01 at (Ken Firestone) ([Leica] From Editor and Publisher: Reporters hasseled at RNC)