Seen at the website for "Occupy Cleveland" (which I admit sounds to me more like a plea to move back to a rustbelt Dem/labor disaster area than a movement per se): "[We] plan a continued presence in the Mayor Tom Johnson/Free Speech Quadrant of Public Square."
What kind of frikkin' world is it when the leftie fringe -- some elements of it, anyway -- is just okayfine with having a "free speech quadrant" of a public square? Heck, when any of us are?
Hey, hippie, it's all a "free speech zone;" it's just not a free camping zone. (To their credit, they do seem to be cool with that, havin' applied for a permit to stick tentage on the sidewalk, and not seeming too miffed that after seven months [!], the local police are not going to renew it.)
But something is deeply sick at the heart of the Republic when we have "free speech zones" on only part of public property. Yeah, even speech I dislike ought not be outlawed, corralled, hemmed in.
OTOH, the Feds do seem to have rousted some old-fashioned bomb-tossers who were hangin' out at OC events -- and then tiptoed all around who/what/why/where (a-hem! Feebs, grow a spine, I don't think this lot were darlings of your boss). Still, they got 'em, and Cleveland's self-appointed Occupiers are probably even more relieved than you are.
It is tempting to suggest political violence is the result of suppressing political speech but in truth, there's always a thug or two who wants an excuse to make things go smash. They may come up with some high-and-mighty talk to justify it but in their heart of hearts, they're still kids with a magnifying glass on a slow summer day -- and civil society is just their bunch of ants. Decent folk won't put up with it. Even decent folk with whom one might disagree on nearly everything else.
We got the Constitution we have because a bunch of people with crazy political notions sought common ground, and a way to allow the freedom to pursue one's own goofball ideas. It's been pushed against ever since.
Might be a good idea to start findin' some common ground to stand on and push back. With gummint overreach and buddy-buddy pattycake with Wall street on one side and the "fight in the streets now" crowds on the other, decency and the ability to let the other fellow be his own special kind of nitwit tends to get crowded out. Don't let it.
BUILDING A 1:1 BALUN
4 months ago