mad anthony

Rants, politics, and thoughts on politics, technology, life,
and stuff from a generally politically conservative Baltimoron.

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Giant barriers for Dems, nothing for Republicans

The Democratic National Convention is going to be pretty safe. They are taking the protesters, shoving them in an area surrounded with 8 foot fences covered with plastic sheeting placed under an abandoned railroad trestle. Meanwhile, the Republican convention can't even get a metal barrier and bulky bags searched.

I'm not going to chalk this up to a vast left-wing conspiracy. The steps that the Boston people are taking seem a bit excessive, but given a choice between security and protesters, I tend to side with security. The conventions are big, juicy targets for terrorists, and it's important to protect them from attack.

I know some will see that view as violating free speech - but they probably think screaming fire in a crowded theator should be protected too. I know it's not up to the government to judge the value of speech, but how much impact do protesters really have? Does anyone really look at a bunch of college dropouts and aging hippies holding giant paper-mache puppets and think that they are making coherent policy arguments. Do they look at them and think they want to place America's future in their dirty, pot-soiled hands?

I'm still not sure what the free speech rights the NY judge is protecting -since when did it mean you could carry a backpack unsearched? After all, you can't on a plane, why should you at a political convention? And if metal barricades are so bad, why was it OK to put the Protest Warriors behind them (I think it's about halfway through the film, in the NY section).


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