Unrepentant in Berkeley (Photo credit: Zombie)
The pro-Marines protesters came, saw, and conquered in Berkeley last night–despite massive chaos, anarchy, and police neglect. The City Council partially backed down–conceding it had erred in passing its obnoxious “unwelcome intruders” resolution and granting Code Pink special privileges. The SFChron reports that “some council members added that they felt they owed U.S. troops an apology as well the many Berkeley residents who were ashamed and offended by their position. ‘To err is human but to really screw up it takes the Berkeley City Council,’ said council member Gordon Wozniak. ‘We failed our city. We embarrassed our city.’”
The council refused to officially apologize. And the troop-haters remain unrepentantly bigoted.
Outside the council chambers, there was an American flag burning, of course. A child’s bike was also burned. Internet photog Zombie has the first of two huge pictorial essays. Compare and contrast their side and ours:
More on the scene from the Chron:
Protesters began gathering as early as Monday night outside City Hall in anticipation of the Tuesday night meeting. By Tuesday morning, some confrontations had become physical, and police in riot gear moved in to separate the groups. At its peak, 2,000 protesters had gathered outside City Hall, police said.
Three protesters were arrested for minor scuffles with other demonstrators – and a fourth for allegedly slapping a police officer – in what was one of the largest demonstrations in the city in years.
Tuesday evening, many demonstrators squeezed into the council chambers – some telling the council to stand firm, others urging the council to apologize for insulting the military and the men and women who are serving their country. The council allowed public testimony to continue into the early morning Wednesday before making a decision.
“Berkeley doesn’t speak for America,” said Eve Tidwell of Columbus, Ga., who flew into the Bay Area on Tuesday after watching news accounts of the uproar over the Marines in Berkeley. “If terror came to Berkeley, the Marines would come to protect the people here.”
The tireless Melanie Morgan of Move America Forward, who spearheaded the protests and backlash, shares details of the outrageous behavior of the Pinkos–and the Berkeley police force:
If I were a headline writer I would describe the situation as CHAOS AND ANARCHY IN BERKELEY today.
Not by our side –by the Marine haters and American traitors.
The cops were openly hostile toward the people who showed up at 5:00 a.m., never stepping in to protect the patriots from the assaults that took place against elderly folks, Gold Star parents, Blue Star families and Joe and Jane Citizen who were waving the flags and showing their pride in the Marines. The police allowed hundreds of Berkeley High School kids (accompanied by their teachers) to gather with CodePink, receive their mandatory face masks and F—k Bush t-shirts, and allowed them to mill around our PA where they tried to cut the power cords to the system.
Berkeley police repeatedly allowed CodePink to violate our permits, and never lifted a finger to stop their crowd from interfering with our activities until the very end, after we screamed blue bloody hell.
When Catherine Moy, the Executive Director of MAF called the police to tell them a riot was erupting in the early hours –THEY HUNG UP ON HER.
Cat called the Highway Patrol, who referred her back to the Berkeley police –WHO HUNG UP ON HER.
It was positively shameful….
…Move America Forward’s sound permit was turned off at 5:00 in the afternoon, while the Pinkos were allowed to use their system to sing Kumbaya and other 60’s peace chants.
Berkeley, the birthplace of free speech, is now officially the center of intolerant hatred for anyone who sticks up for the men and women who are fighting and dying to protect THEIR rights.
Before our sound system was nearly sabotaged, a young man posing as a pro-troop supporter asked to speak to the crowd. I allowed him to talk (about his family’s ‘service’)when he started spewing obscenities about the ‘illegal, immoral, unjust war’ . I grabbed the microphone back, and he tried to clobber me with it.
Gold Star Dad Mark Crowley knocked him to the ground, where he found a faceful of dirt to keep him company.
Our side sang God Bless America, America the beautiful and other stirring songs that seemed to enrage the elderly commies.
25,000 petitions were collected by Move America Forward with the help of other pro-troops groups like Gathering of Eagles, EaglesUp, Vets for Freedom and others.
There were Eagles EVERYWHERE today.
And Patriot Guard Riders.
And American Legion vets.
And members of the Military Order of the Purple Heart.
5,000 petition signatures were also collected by an organization in Washington headed by Nicholas Provenzano, who flew out to Berkeley on the red-eye to deliver to the City Council.
Red, White and Blue Americans rushed to our side from Atlanta, Georgia, New York, Pennsylvania, Colorado, San Diego, and other parts of the United States.
Our crowds numbered into the thousands throughout the day.
So gratifying. So humbling.
People of all ages, races, and political backgrounds (yes even some incensed liberals) honored our active duty service members serving in Iraq and Afghanistan, and in other parts around the world.
We spoke of the sacrifice and the nobility of the military families who support their sons and daughters, husbands and wives.
And we gave a HOOO-AWW especially to our Marines, who find themselves prevented from speaking while under assault, not from a evil enemy abroad, but from the insurgents here at home.
Melanie has sent a letter to the city attorney’s office about the treatment of the pro-troops demonstrators.
Hans Bader of CEI sends along the following observations:
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While a city has no constitutional obligation to provide police protection to the general public, if it does provide it to some groups, but then denies it selectively to a disfavored political group, that is a First Amendment violation. See Dwares v. City of New York, 985 F.2d 94 (2d Cir. 1993) (police violated First Amendment by allowing flag-burners to be assaulted, since the flag-burners alleged that those who assaulted them were assured by police that they would not be arrested unless they got “totally out of control,” and the assaults were so obvious that it gave rise to an inference that the police were acting selectively in denying the flag-burners police protection based on their offensive political views).
Where the heck is the ACLU, which claims to support the First Amendment? (We all know the answer)…
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