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Florida University Student Attacked By Cops

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The expatriate is back in town, in Miami, in Florida, in the great, free bastion of liberty, my United States. What do I find when I flick on the no-longer-flickering eye of the TV? A young man, a muchacho, a student with a hint of serious in his demeanor approaching the podium at the old but un-respected University of Florida. He insists on questioning Senator John Kerry after the politician had given his views and opened the floor for questions.

The U of F has never been regarded as an academic school. It has been noted for its varsity sports teams, called “gators,” and the invention of designer water. I remember my uncle’s graduation when I was about 3 or 4 but only the red-brickness of the campus. It had, for a time, a great photography department, after I had left another poor Florida state university for an academic college in New York that revels in the protection of liberty, freedom and constitutionalism in an atmosphere of academic freedom firmly protected from the ever-present threat of interference.

Waves of paranoia roll across the American landscape at regular intervals. Each has threatened our liberties. There were reactions to the Tories who wanted to tie us to King George, southern spies who would have enslaved our history and Japanese to store in the Nisei concentration camps out west. Each was a good excuse to protect ourselves by giving away our rights in exchange for “security”.

Now there is a world of Arabs waiting to destroy all of western civilization, to explode themselves in murderous frenzies against women, children and random men. No question but that they are there and do want to bathe the world in blood. But does that mean that America must give up everything that made us free in order to protect ourselves from the forces of evil?

Today Andrew Meyer, a University of Florida student did that which students are supposed to do. He thought about politics, about candidates, about the nature of democracy and about his vote and he barged up to the podium in that party school and attempted to engage Senator Kerry in a discussion. Yes. He became heated and took more than his minute and that catapulted him into his 15 minutes of international fame.

Said John Kerry, “He barged to the front of the line and started to ask questions.” Yes, he did. Bad boy. Shoot him.

The U. of Florida thought-police surrounded him and ordered him to stop asking questions. They attacked him, five or six overweight bubbas of black and white, four alpha males of the gorilla persuasion and one female version pulled him bodily from the podium. He raised his hands in supplication and surrender and they continued their vicious attack. At one point the white bubba looked up into a video camera with glee as they continued to manhandle the youngster. “What fun!” shows in his beady eyes. He seemed so happy at the excuse for violence against students that one wonders what perversity had him accept (or seek) a job in a university environment.

Andrew begged to be let go, cried for help and promised to comply with their violent demands. They ignored him, sat on him, pummeled him and then shot him with a taser. He was unarmed. There were five of them. Each out-weighed him with that great American bulk of the lower classes, the ham-necked against the slim intellectual. It was a classic battle of the physically violent against the verbally demanding, the bloody sword against the pen.

“They only used a taser,” some will whine. Only! As a man whose survival is based on a sophisticated pacing device in my chest, that taser would be murderous. And, yes, I, too, have been known to ask questions. I was a journalist and it was my job, always my pleasure and compulsion. I consider it a virtue. In me and in Andrew Meyer, who today learned that America is rapidly losing or has already lost any semblance of civilization and liberty. They only used a taser. They merely put people in camps. They only stuffed some people in boxcars. They only used machetes. They only wanted to return to the “year zero”. There are so many things in our world that could be worse that we may not notice when worse things become commonplace. He was merely kidnapped by the cops, locked up like an animal and, when a judge saw through the inhumanity of the University, was he given what he always deserved — his freedom. He did not get Kerry’s answer. He received a civics lesson in the Bill of Rights — or its death.

In 1948 the United Nations, when it was still a beacon in a darkened world, adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which includes:

“Whereas disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind, and the advent of a world in which human beings shall enjoy freedom of speech and belief and freedom from fear and want has been proclaimed as the highest aspiration of the common people,

Whereas it is essential, if man is not to be compelled to have recourse, as a last resort, to rebellion against tyranny and oppression, that human rights should be protected by the rule of law…”

And, in Article 5,

“No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment…”

America also has something called “The Bill of Rights” but seems to have lost sight of what it includes and how it might work in our modern, threatened society. It is not so much those of us who have reached another age that worries me. Some of them still remember the viciousness of the McCarthy inquisitions and the stories that came out of the fight against fascism. Some people still remember the civil rights movement when other students were killed for registering people to vote, were attacked by the same kind of southern cops with dogs and water cannon and who only received deliverance from Jim Crow slavery in the 60s and 70s.

What is more fearful, more threatening, more dangerous and may stain our collective soul with its complacency began to be reported early today in The Gainesville Sun which also reported that six officers were used to “subdue” the student for asking Kerry about contesting the 2004 election results.

“As Meyer was escorted away, he was followed by several students, including Matthew Howland, 20. Howland, a UF senior who said he didn’t know Meyer, said he was “appalled“ by the way UPD officers handled the situation. Howland acknowledged that Meyer had acted inappropriately by “rushing“ the microphone and forcing a question on Kerry.”

This is enough for worry but it will be investigated, dissected, reviewed and, hopefully, brought to court in a massive lawsuit to, like OJ, cause the negligent university and guilty thugs financial pain even if they are merely reprimanded or suspended by timid college administrators and repressive politicians.

The importance is that the concept of liberty is being forgotten or mistaken by a younger generation. Just recently I read but did not note the origin of an op-ed piece on how college-age people do not understand freedom of speech and expression. Many are so terrified of the terrors of our world that they think security can be protected by repression, that freedoms are easily traded for security and do not understand what is protected speech and what is not. Some think that police are entitled to ask whatever they like to make any orders they care to. Gainesville seems to be one such place.

On Fox News just following the incident a news anchor with a decidedly opinionated manner (who I should know if I watched Fox News) “reported” the news of the police attack by explaining that the police had the right to shoot a student for being “obnoxious” and that “…police always have right to tell people what to do and they must do it…”

After the student was forcibly kidnapped and imprisoned for illegal question-asking the Fox videographers interviewed students who had witnessed the attack. One decried the violence in spite of Andrew’s pleas and lack of violent actions. Another, incredibly, announced that the police were within their rights in attacking the student for hogging the podium and not immediately cowering in front of the new leaders of Florida universities — the cops.

Question: Will the national academic community censor the University for allowing cops to control its campus?

Question: Will the state of Florida revoke the charter of the University of Florida for its negligence in allowing thugs to be ill-trained and un-supervised?

Question: How rich will Andrew Meyer be after suing Florida for assault, battery, kidnapping, false imprisonment and cruel and unusual punishment?

Question: Should John Kerry bow out of any campaign for public office for his failure to have his staff or bodyguards help to protect the man against the demented police attack?

Question: Will any serious student entertain the thought of application to such a place where questions are answered with weapons? Would any decent parent allow their child to go to a party school where deviation from mindless partying could be dangerous to their health?

Question: Does a nation that surrenders its liberty in the name of security become more secure — or less?

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About hfdratch

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Great stuff, Howard. Good to have you back in the US and back writing here on BC.

    For me the biggest irony of this incident was that the victim was a leftist, asking questions of a leftist, silenced by thugs employed by a left-leaning academic institution.

    Dave

  • Dr Dreadful

    I watched the video and to be fair, Kerry did initially try to stick up for Mr Meyer, saying, “Let me answer his question”.

    That said, it was pretty half-hearted. I’m left wondering what happened to the righteous anger Kerry exhibited when the Rove smear machine targeted him after his “education… end up in Iraq” comments.

    Possibly the difference was that it wasn’t him being tasered.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Another aspect of this which is worth considering is that Meyer was clearly grandstanding the whole way through. Eyewitnesses point out that whenever he was away from the cameras he was calm and behaved himself, but as soon as the cameras were on him he began resisting and screaming. Doesn’t excuse the way he was treated, but I think he clearly went there to create an incident. Of course, the campus police OUGHT to be trained to defuse such a situation not aggravate it.

    Also, the last I heard he was not being released uncharged, but was up for indictment on a 3rd degree felony.

    Dave

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    Great article, Howard.

    With your permission (and that of the publisher), I’ll forward this article to a number of lists I belong to. I can’t seem to get people to come to the site.

    Sigh….

  • BG

    This prankster got the attention he wanted, his “fifteen minutes of fame” if you will for himself and his website. I watched the video of the incident on YouTube. He resisted. Security reponded. If you want to avoid getting tasered, don’t resist. It’s pretty simple, really. What the fuss is about I’ll never know. I do hope he devotes as much attention to his studies as he does to making an ass of himself.

  • Scott

    The crowd sure was happy when the cops showed up. The taser was used to get the guys attention because after 4 cops grab him, he keeps fighting and yelling.

    You can always tell the guilty when they continue to ask, “What did I do.” Ha, Tard.

  • Howard

    My initial reaction to this was to condemn the “fascist” police. However, upon further reflection I don’t think his freedom of speech was violated. Maybe it was more a matter of him being a dick and monopolizing the forum. He was asked over and over to desist, which wasn’t really an unreasonable request, since other people’s rights were being violated by his not sharing the forum.

    When you fight with police, you are going to get into trouble. I think he was grandstanding. And screaming like a big pussy when they did Taser him after repeated warnings. A real man, I must say.

    Keeping public order is one of the things police are charged with doing. They didn’t stop his free speech. They stopped his disorderly behavior.

  • Phil

    I agree the cops over reacted but what about the student. Wasn’t he denying everybody else right of free speech when he refused to give up the mic? Let me go to a town hall meeting and not let anybody else express themselves and I would be wrong wrong wrong.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    I went to Meyer’s website at http://www.theandrewmeyer.com. It’s pretty clear from the site that he considers himself some sort of ‘performance artist’ and the only conclusion that I can draw is that this incident was more about grabbing attention than about making a real political point.

    Dave

  • Ron

    The only thing I find disturbing is the personal attacks on the appearance of and the name calling of the U of F officers by Mr. Howard. I am unimpressed by the article and the lack of facts presented by the writer. Did Mr. Howard miss the part of the video where the officers gave him several opportunities to stop resisting and place his hands behind his back to be escorted out? Maybe the volume was broken on Mr. Howard’s TV at that time. Or maybe he was too busy ranting his liberal leftist propaganda, twisting what the First Amendment was really meant for to hear this exchange prior to the student being shot with a taser. I find it comical the way every liberal cites the First Amendment after being arrested for civil disobedience. What if everyone in the auditorium decided to push their way to the front to ask their question? Then after the ensuing trampling and injuring of people the police would be targeted for their lack of training and their inability to act. Mr. Howard will never be happy with police because they are an easy target to write about and obviously his spin goes unchallenged in this publication.

    The reality is that the student was given a lawful order by a university official which he failed to comply with. After being given several more opportunities to leave he decided to resist efforts of law enforcement to escort him out. He then refused to submit to handcuffing. The bottom line, which is supported by case law, is that you do not have the right to resist an arrest. If you do not agree with the actions of a police officer then there is recourse in the courts. The appropriate action is not to create a public disturbance and resist arrest.

    The U of F officers were with-in the scope of their duty and did not use excessive force. If justice is served then Meyer will be convicted of resisting arrest and the officers will be completely cleared.

    I submit that like most journalists Mr. Howard will speak of outrageous actions by the police but will be the first one to claim victim-status if he were on the receiving end of an unruly “intellectual” at a public forum in which he was speaking. Mr. Howard, I challenge you to research your statements and find out what it is really like to be a law enforcement officer and then present the facts that you are knowledgeable of.

  • Dr Dreadful

    Whether he’s an attention whore or was trying to make a point, it’s still protected speech.

  • Farid H.

    I witnessed german police arrest a rioter at Duesseldorf International Airport a few weeks ago. The whole scene was totally different to what happened here, as it occured in a perfectly civilized, courteous and professional manner.

    It started harmlessly: an older man went to a checkin counter and kept shouting in a foreign language. Every five minutes or so, he resumed his tirades, and blocked other people from accessing that counter. Obviously, he was pissed at something there; don’t know what, but it doesn’t really matter. A few minutes later, 8 police officers came and stood idly by, and one of them politely asked the guy to please move on, so as not to disturb other passengers. The guy didn’t react at all. The police didn’t touch him, but tried to find a translator. It was already late in the evening, so it took them more than 20 minutes to get one.

    Then the talking resumed, but the guy was still totally out of control, fuming, shouting etc…, and more importantly, still blocking the way to other passengers. When the police finally decided to arrest him (approx. 40 minutes after the whole incident started) they signalled him visually and through translator that he should follow them to the police station on his own. He acknowledged, but refused to do so, and instead went down on the floor and started to pray, muslim style. Police looked dumbfounded, but they patiently waited another 10 minutes until the guy had finished his improvised prayer. Then this guy allowed himself to be arrested. One police officer went down to the floor, and mimicked the way the arrestee should behave: kneeling, head on the floor, hands behind his back. The guy understood, and complied. Then, and only then, did a single officer carefully slap handcuffs on him, and two police carefully lifed him and escorted him very politely and respectfully away.

    I guess it’s matter of different mentality that the police in the US are acting so much more brutally and recklessly. Maybe because they’re used to people being armed and therefore potentially dangerous?

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    Or maybe he was too busy ranting his liberal leftist propaganda, twisting what the First Amendment was really meant for to hear this exchange prior to the student being shot with a taser.

    Ron, what on earth makes you think the author is a leftist? Defending free speech and the rest of the bill or rights is a conservative position.

    As I mentioned before, this is a case of the establishment left oppressing the radical left.

    Dave

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com handyguy

    “The U of F officers were with-in the scope of their duty and did not use excessive force.”

    Astonishing to me that anyone could write that with a straight face. The incident is extraordinarily disturbing to watch. As Chris Matthews pointed out last night, are we at the point where we taser people just for being obnoxious?

    This is also similar to the incident at the UCLA library some months back. Bambenek wrote a, surprise, deliberately provocative article on BC praising the cops and condemning the ‘resister.’ Everyone seems to have forgotten that now…That victim, an Iranian-American grad student, has a lawsuit pending but no disciplinary action was ever taken against the police.

    The fact that Meyer is a blowhard, and even the fact that he resisted being thrown out of the hall, does not justify what happened. And Kerry’s muddled answers afterward are embarrassing.

  • JustOneMan

    gee…the great senator..choke..gasp..could only must a faint whisper of “let him finish the question”….real presidential timber and leadership..

    couldnt he simply ordered the security guards to stop? Here is an asshole who almost became president and wouldnt event defend the rights of some silly college kid..the left wind student morons didnt even come to his defense

    To me this validates the Swift Boat attack on his character…pretty consistent… for over 30 years after getting hit in the but with a grain of rice…he still doesnt have the guts to defend basic rights..

    JOM

  • moonraven

    Students are SUPPOSED to overreact, become heated, hold politicians accountable!

    I suggest that you read Naomi Klein’s piece on the incident. It’s reprinted on commondreams.org today.

    If you had your way, [Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor], the kid would have been put in front of a firing squad.

    Not just tasered.

    It’s YOU who should be tasered: for selling your patrimony (freedom of speech) for a plate of lentils.

  • http://aol.com Atticus

    This man Meyer has not been schooled in the fundamentals of decorum. He obviously wanted to attract attention but hasn’t a clue how one should conduct oneself at such events. At least he wasn’t clubbed, which he should have been.

  • http://7colorlagoon.com/blog1 Howard Dratch

    Thank you Dave for pointing out that I may have been a liberal, hopefully a radical and an activist many years ago. I was also a political science undergraduate and graduate student and began the study of constitutional law at an ivy league law school. I haven’t changed but the world has.

    Now I am obviously a staunch conservative trying to protect the constitutional rights and liberties guaranteed by such ancient documents as the Bill of Rights. As I wrote of the rabid attack (yes, I watched a number of videos and had the volume up) on the student, it was not that he was obnoxious or grandstanding. So are many people. “Protectors” of the public peace do NOT have a right to attack them “under color of law” with violence and weapons.

    Two cops have been suspended without pay pending investigation — given a paid vacation. They willfully attacked a citizen with force, violence and a weapon that could be deadly. Justice would have had the cops arraigned for assault pending a trial.

    The personal part is that I am in the US for medical treatment and to begin deciding if I will move back to my own country, even here to the state where I was born and raised. I was on the verge of homesickness thinking America really does have positive points when these animals were loosed on a boy.

    How fearful need an old man be of Florida cops? Obviously I do not have the right to ask questions of a politician since my pacemaker would not survive an attack like this one.

    I left the country in your care for 10 years and you gave away our liberties, freedoms and rights and many of you haven’t even noticed. Shame!

  • moonraven

    Right on, Howard.

    I left the US 15 years ago. And I will never move back there. What a shithole of redneck barbary.

    And the irony is: those stupid fuckers think they have good lives.

    Because they have killed 1.2 million Iraquis.

    Pack your bags.

  • JustOneMan

    Moonie..

    Secretaries Colin Powell and Dennis Rumsfeld are sitting in a bar. A guy walks in and asks the bartender, “Isn’t that Powell and Rumsfeld?” The barkeep says, “Yep, that’s them.”

    So, the guy walks over to the two and says, “Hello, what are you guys doing?”

    Rumsfeld says, “We’re planning a war,” to which the guy replies, “Really? What’s going to happen?”

    Rumsfeld says, “Well, we’re going to kill 10 million Iraqis and one bicycle repairman.”

    And the guy exclaims, “Why are you going to kill a bicycle repairman!?!”

    With that, Rumsfeld turns to Powell and says, “See, I told you no one would care about the 10 million Iraqis!”

    JOM

  • Otis B. Driftwood

    What a bunch of hogwash this article is! Let me guess, you have never had the responsibility of securing an area with a large number of people because you come off as very ignorant.

    This kid isn’t some patriot standing up to oppressive rules of society or government. He was a jackass who refused to listen to security, and got what he had coming to him. The Bill of Rights is in no way at risk.

    I have gone to protests and large gatherings and haven’t been beaten or tasered by cops. You know why? Because I listen to what the people with weapons tell me.

    “He thought about politics, about candidates, about the nature of democracy and about his vote and he barged up to the podium in that party school and attempted to engage Senator Kerry in a discussion.”

    Amazing skills there, Nostradamus, but that is complete BS on your part. First, you have no idea what he thought from watching the video. What you see is an idiot shouting, looking for his 15 minutes. When told to move back, he puts his arms up as if he isn’t doing anything, yet he moves forward. When they apply a little muscle, he resists. Where in the Constitution does it say the number of times you are allowed to ignore requests of those in charge of security?

    “six officers were used to “subdue” the student for asking Kerry about contesting the 2004 election results.”

    Absolute falsehood. It had nothing to do with the subject matter. You write as if he was tasered at the podium. And to use inflammatory language to compare this incident to the Japanese internment camps and the Holocaust shatters your credibility. He was subdued because he refused to listen to what he was told by security, the people who were there to protect everyone else in the room.

    “As a man whose survival is based on a sophisticated pacing device in my chest, that taser would be murderous.”

    Then you will probably listen when security tells you what to do, won’t you?

    Any person who thinks this is a free speech issue is symptomatic of what’s wrong with this country: people who create phony issues while there are real ones to deal with.

  • moonraven

    You are right!

    One of the real issues is the crying need to get rid of folks like you.

    For whom firing squads are waaaaaay too good.

  • Arch Conservative

    This kid is just as big a douchebag as John Kerry is.

    He deserved to be removed from the event.

    However …is it really necessary to taser someone after you have already handcuffed them and got them to the ground?

    I think the rent-a-cops who tasered the lil punk did go overboard.

  • moonraven

    They should have been tasering YOU, arch [Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor].

  • Otis B. Driftwood

    Ah the faux leftist intellectual. Nice try, comrade, but it’s no wonder the revolution hasn’t gone well with such a deep thinker contributing to the cause.

  • bliffle

    “If you had your way, … the kid would have been put in front of a firing squad.”

    After all, there IS a precedent for it: Kent State.

  • Clavos

    Just watched the YouTube video. Very well done for an impromptu, accidental filming job.

    Sure looks like a set-up to me.

    The kid must be a serious drama student; he’s certainly got the histrionics down pat.

    “Don’t tase me, Bro!!”

    The T-shirts will be on ebay by midnight.

  • Clavos

    Only in Florida….

  • http://handyfilm.blogspot.com/ handyguy

    It may be easier for someone who has never been ‘tased’ to make a flippant joke out of it. No, I haven’t been either, but the screams in this video, like in the UCLA one last year, are just about impossible for me to listen to. The screams in both cases sound all too real.

  • Maurice

    For those of you crying big alligator tears for Meyers please consider this:

    What if he had simply turned around and walked away with the first police gal that walked up to him? What would have happened then?

  • Clavos

    I actually HAVE been tased.

    I asked for it; was visiting a friend at his work, he’s a top officer with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) the state equivalent of the FBI, and he invited me to see a demo. They called for volunteers, and not having learned to not volunteer while in the Army, I did.

    It hurts. It hurts like hell. But none of the cops who volunteered for the demo, nor I, screamed like that; I grunted and even moaned a couple of times; but it passes relatively quickly, and if you’re in reasonably good health, you’re none the worse for the wear. It’s main effect (and its effectiveness) is you lose the ability to stand or move voluntarily for a few seconds (there’s plenty of INvoluntary movement). Depending on the type of taser used, it lasts from a few seconds to up to 30 seconds, with no after effects.

    It’s a whole lot more humane than being hit over the head with an old fashioned baton or truncheon.

    It was precisely his screams which led me to make the histrionics remark; the whole thing smacks of a deliberate attempt to engineer a media incident (on the part of the student, not the media).

  • Clavos

    Maurice #31:

    Bingo. I believe he was trying to create an incident.

  • QriusAgain

    If his intent was to create an incident, the police sure let themselves get suckered into contributing to it. Do they have such poor training and limited skills that the only way they know how to deal with any incident is with a show of superior force?

    Then again, that sure seems like the American way lately.

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    I haven’t read all of the above comments, but I find myself to a degree on both sides of the issue.

    My son is a UF grad student. Given that UF is a huge state supported school (right at 50000 students,) and one that has emphasized sports (rather successfully, it would seem,) it is no wonder that it has a less than great reputation in the academic community. However, that is not to say that academics are lost there. It is largely up to individual students how they choose to conduct themselves, and what is most important to them during their tenure on any campus. UF has many superior academic programs, and a number of highly regarded alums in many professional fields of endeavor.

    My son has a friend, a doctoral student at Harvard. This friend notes that Harvard has its share of wild parties. If I’m not mistaken, Harvard enjoys some academic credibility.

    According to my son, Andrew Meyer is a journalism student and so called “performance artist” who has a reputation on campus for staging a variety of “events” which have sometimes brought on responses by campus police. I do not at this writing know the nature or extent of any of these “events.” Meyer’s having “charged the podium” and his refusal to relinguish it were likely cause for his removal.

    The members of the campus police who “removed” Meyer did so with no particular skill. Had they performed properly, they should have been able to escort him out of the building without serious incident, and without resorting to the use of tasers. Howard’s characterization of those officers is, however, unfair and odious.

    That Meyer has a history of staging public “events,” it does seem plausible that he made a special effort to scream and feign more of a fight when the cameras were on him. I would say that Dave’s noting that Kerry, the school and most of the students in attendance were and are of a more or less “left” persuasion also lends credence to the notion that Meyer staged his performance with no particular connection to the politics of the event. Should the tasers have been used? I’d say no. However, I would agree that he likely came off in better shape than, as Clavos reminds us, if he had been whacked repeatedly with a night stick.

    As to what responsibility Kerry had, I’d say not much. He was a guest of the university. Any entourage he may have had with him were charged only with the protection of Sen. Kerry. It would have been inappropriate of them to intervene.

    It may well be that the UF police need further training in the handling of such incidents, but I find Howard’s negative blanket statements regarding the school as unwarranted.

    I also find most of Howard’s final questions specious at best. That being said, I do believe that we have allowed the loss of many of our basic freedoms in the name of national security which has given license to many of our constabulary at all levels to essentially “shoot first, and ask questions later.”

    Whether the incident at UF is a measure of that loss is another question.

    Baritone

  • Michael Valdes

    The reason our forefathers got together was to give this country freedom. Freedom of Speech and so on. It is sad that all we are doing is becoming what we try so deseperately to get rid of. It feels like our law enforcement are the Nazi’s and George Bush is Hitler. I love my country, don’t get me wrong, but we are the ones destroying it by putting these kind of people in office. It all falls back on voting? Aren’t we glad that Kerry didn’t get in office. He is quick to turn his head whenever a U.S. Citizen is in trouble. Would he have done the same thing if he where president whenever a U.S. crisis would arise? Pathetic. Last election was between tweedle-dee and tweedle-dummer. Its a shame to see what our country is turning into. All I have to say is history repeats itself. We are just speeding up the process. It all began with the Patriot Act, no , no, I take that back, it all began with Bush. I wonder if I’ll get arrested for commenting on this?

  • Clavos

    Baritone #39:

    Excellent, impartial analysis.

    Props to you, sir.

  • http://jonathanscanlan.blogspot.com Jonathan Scanlan

    Umm, sorry if this seems naive, but shouldn’t the controversy be about the question and not about the agression?

    It is my view that censorship is generally only used when the oppressors point of view is indefensible. So in my mind, the important question is what was the question that was so provocative?

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    This was by far the lamest article I’ve read about this incident, and I’ve read quite a few. Congrats.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “The reality is that the student was given a lawful order by a university official which he failed to comply with. After being given several more opportunities to leave he decided to resist efforts of law enforcement to escort him out. He then refused to submit to handcuffing. The bottom line, which is supported by case law, is that you do not have the right to resist an arrest. If you do not agree with the actions of a police officer then there is recourse in the courts. The appropriate action is not to create a public disturbance and resist arrest.”

    Thank you, Ron.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    Farid,

    Your German airport cops are an example of ineptitude and weakness. They allowed a crazed (and possibly dangerous) foreign man to essentially commandeer an airport line for nearly an hour before they, tepidly, responded.

    If that’s your example of how “humane” police act, fine, that’s your opinion. But your “humane” police allowed hundreds of innocent people’s lives to be disrupted by a madman, simply for fear of being accused of “brutality” by leftists.

    That’s not an example of “freedom” and “liberty” at work in a civilized country; instead, it’s an example of how loud-mouthed crazies are allowed to impede upon the freedom of law-abiding citizens in a weak country.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “As Chris Matthews pointed out last night, are we at the point where we taser people just for being obnoxious?”

    Chris Matthews is an idiot. This clown was tasered not for “being obnoxious” but for attempting to incite a riot and resisting arrest. Tasers are used in such situations because the alternative (physically restraining a resisting offender) is MORE likely to result in serious injury to both the offender AND the officers.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “If you had your way, [Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor], the kid would have been put in front of a firing squad.”

    Weren’t you the one calling for firing squads for conservatives just a few days ago, moonbat?

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “Two cops have been suspended without pay pending investigation — given a paid vacation.”

    Huh? With pay or without pay? Paid vacation or unpaid vacation? Get your facts straight, Ivy Leaguer…

    “The personal part is that I am in the US for medical treatment”

    So, I guess the socialist country you came from cannot provide quality medical treatment in a timely manner? What a surprise…

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “I left the US 15 years ago. And I will never move back there.”

    Well, that’s certainly good news.

    So when you givin’ up the ol’ citizenship?

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “This kid isn’t some patriot standing up to oppressive rules of society or government. He was a jackass who refused to listen to security, and got what he had coming to him.”

    Thank you, Otis.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “is it really necessary to taser someone after you have already handcuffed them and got them to the ground?”

    He wasn’t handcuffed at that point, because he was resisting arrest. Which is why he got tasered.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “Just watched the YouTube video. Very well done for an impromptu, accidental filming job.”

    Heh. Well, he DID have a friend film it all for him… 😉

    Oh, and the police report indicates that this clown was quiet and subdued WHEN NO CAMERAS WERE AROUND, and even told the officers that “you did nothing wrong, you were just doing your job.”

    This little leftist drama queen was also caught on video asking “Are you going to kill me?” and “Please tell people I know that I’m being arrested, I don’t want to be disappeared!” and other such crazy nonsense.

    Face it: This was a planned event by some loony leftist college kid who wanted to make a name for himself by creating a scene, and all you lefties who are making a big deal out of this are dupes.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “the screams in this video, like in the UCLA one last year, are just about impossible for me to listen to. The screams in both cases sound all too real.”

    That’s because you’re a dupe.

    Tasering is meant to be unpleasant, but if you ever watch COPS, most people who are tasered simply groan, and then stop resisting and submit. (Which is the entire point of deploying a Taser…)

    The developers of the Taser apparently didn’t have drama queens and camera phones in mind…

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    As regards Michaels’ comments above, I still don’t see just how it would have been appropriate for Sen. Kerry or any of his people to become involved unless they had perceived some kind of threat to the Senator. I certainly don’t believe that this event serves as any kind of an indication as to how Kerry would have carried out his responsibilities as president.

    I also imagine that had Mr. Meyer chosen to perform his antics during a visit by our sitting president, the Bushees would have pre-empted the campus police, bound and gagged him, and had him “renditioned” to Egypt, Bulgaria or some such place before the sun rose the next morning. Frankly, I would prefer the taser.

    My son says that this whole thing has created quite a campus buzz, but taken in some perspective, it really wasn’t that big a deal. It just resulted in some “Rodney Kingesque” video.

    My brother in-law has been escorted out of a number of city council meetings of the small community in which he lives in recent years, and has come close to being arrested on more than one occasion. He is now the front runner in the town’s upcoming mayoral race. Go figure. Perhaps Mr. Meyer dreams of turning his “15 minutes” into long lasting fame and fortune.

    I would say that Howard’s question/comment regarding just how much Meyer will get from the school via law suits sadly may well come to fruition. There are probably litigators lined up at Meyer’s door as I write.

    B-tone

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    Fine comment, Baritone.

    And btw, UF actually has a fine reputation in academics. Pharmacology, Business, Psychology, etc. The author of this post simply doesn’t have a clue about the University of Florida, police officers, or much else, apparently…

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    As to whether Meyer is a “lefty,” that is up for grabs. Personally, my take on it is that this wasn’t done for any particular political reason. Meyer just wanted the TV time.

    He got it.

    B-tone

  • Paul Jones

    “This man Meyer has not been schooled in the fundamentals of decorum. He obviously wanted to attract attention but hasn’t a clue how one should conduct oneself at such events. At least he wasn’t clubbed, which he should have been.”

    Because violating decorum is a crime? What country are you from?

  • Farid H.

    RJ, actually, I felt scared too when that crazy started his rioting. But it quickly became apparent to everyone around that he was not dangerous. Yes, angry and weird, but not violent. And even if he were planning to draw a weapon, set off a bomb or whatever (who knows?), there were 7 other police officers staying closely by, everyone ready to intervene (they didn’t assume a threatening stance though like drawing their weapons, but their holsters were not clipped shut either, a clear and universal warning signal). He wouldn’t have had a chance in hell to endanger us passengers.

    Actually, this is typical training for german police (esp. here in northrhine westfalia): their main job is to protect, of course, using appropriate force if necessary like every other police in the world, but they also learn to deescalate a situation as soon as it is under control. It’s integral part of their basic training and refresher courses. They obviously felt secure and that there was no need to act differently than they did.

    Was it irresponsible or clever police tactics in this special case? We’ll never know. Perhaps we were just lucky nothing bad happened? Maybe. But it’s definitly a reason why police is so well regarded here. And since we had just one killed policeman in over 10 years (and that was during a bank robbery followed by a chase), their tactics seem to be quite effective. Of course, it’s a different environment than in the States, that’s for sure. It would be suicidal for the cops there and innocent bystanders too, to act the same way when one can routinely assume that people are potentially armed and extremely dangerous.

    Yet, to return to this FU incident: had the campus police a reason to assume that this prankster was potentially so dangerous as to justify the use of a taser? Or are those weapons used so casually as if they were just another enforcement instrument (rather than a measure of self-defense and last recourse)?

  • http://www.stiffarmingsociety.com/ Jesse

    I am a webmaster and see clear signs that the kid’s website has been taken under control by an outside interest. In the cached version of his site, he writes about gators football and cars which run on water. The current site cites foxnews and nbc – unlikely sources for an anti-establishment guy.

    You can compare the current site to a cache of the site here:

    google
    site:www.theandrewmeyer.com

  • Simple Lesson

    Poor Little Andy,

    Didn’t your mother teach you not to play with fire? You got burned!

  • Clavos

    Jesus, people, wake up!

    Even the newspapers are saying it was a STUNT!

    By a freakin’ college kid!

    Can you say “Animal House?”

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    Another thought.

    It would seem that Howard looks upon the UF incident as some kind of watershed regarding the rise of a police state. As I noted above I harbour some of the same fears, but I don’t look upon Meyer’s tasering as symptomatic. As noted here by many, he could have been badly beaten or killed under other circumstances and/or in another place, another time.

    We should, I think, be watchful. We aren’t likely to forget this affair for some time. We will collectively store it in the cluttered area at the back of our brains. Should other incidents occur which appear to escalate police brutality, we can, I’m sure, conjure this incident up and make proper comparisons.

    But, frankly, I think Meyer got just what he intended – himself in the limelight and the University of Florida in the hot seat.

    B-tone

  • Cindy D

    Farid,

    I guess it’s matter of different mentality that the police in the US are acting so much more brutally and recklessly. Maybe because they’re used to people being armed and therefore potentially dangerous?

    These were “campus police.” It is highly unlikely that they have ever had to deal with anyone being armed. It is quite likely that they don’t get to use the status of their authority in ways that make them feel like “real police.”

    Even when you are talking about state police or local police, you find those attracted to the job because of some thirst for power over others. When you are talking about this flavor of police officer, overreaction is common and it seems any opportunity to vent this power over others. This was so long before 9-11.

    While training acts like a leash for the worst of them, you don’t have to be very educated, or very ethically developed to become a cop.

    Maybe they watch too many movies.

    The best of them don’t seem to indulge in this.

    (Apologies to those police officers who are above this.)

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    I wouldn’t put “campus police” down the ladder too far. Campus police at larger universities oversee a student population that is larger than probably well over 90% of all the country’s municipalities.

    Dealing with students in potentially violent situations can be a delicate affair – moreso than similar situations confronted by the average “beat cop.”

    Violence pops up everywhere. Let us not forget Virginia Tech. We can go back at least as far as Charles Whitman’s rampage on the University of Texas campus.

    The climate on the average campus is a good deal more tense than in days past. I remember my army days at Ft. Hood, Texas back in the mid-1960s. Some of my fellow draftees and I shared half of a duplex in the town of Belton, home of the tiny Mary Hardin Baylor college (not Baylor University.) At that time MHB was for women only. They had, I believe one campus cop. Generally, his biggest job was keeping us randy GIs away from their pure Baptist coeds. I don’t think he was altogether successful in that effort.

    Times have definitely changed.

    B-tone

  • moonraven

    [Edited]

    I remember Kent State–when the National Guard fuckheads fired on the students demonstrating against Nixon’s sending US millitary troops into Cambodia. I was teaching and heading an AFT union at a large state university in the midwest in that 1970 spring.

    Our university was just one of many that struck in support of Kent State and had active street protests. The guard beat up some of our students as well–before arresting them. I spent several nights bailing kids out of the local jail in DeKalb, IL.

    What is indicative of the change in times and the complete lack of spine and sensibility is the concommitant lack of universities striking in protest of this latest violence and attack on free speech.

    (I remember fondly the days in 1964 of the Strike for Free Speech on the UC Berekely campus, too.)

    And in respect to Cambodia, yesterday Brother Number Two, Nuon Chea, was accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity in a special UN commission for the death of 1.7 million persons.

    Looks like Bush the Lesser IQ is fast closing in on that total: 1.2 million Iraquis and counting….

    Congratulations, pinheads, for your excellent decision to keep that criminal in office! Maybe you can go on trial with him.

  • moonraven

    From The Progressive:

    “The ACLU of Florida objects to Meyer’s treatment.

    “People have a reasonable expectation to ask questions in a public setting-even if they are aggressive and some disagree with their position-that is free speech plain and simple,” said Howard Simon, the ACLU of Florida’s executive director. “Similarly, Kerry had a reasonable expectation to be able to answer those questions. Neither of them was able to exercise their free speech rights due to the police action.”

    Senator Kerry released a statement that said: “I believe I could have handled the situation without interruption, but I do not know what warnings or other exchanges transpired between the young man and the police prior to his barging to the front of the line and their intervention. I asked the police to allow me to answer the question and was in the process of responding when he was taken into custody. I was not aware that a taser was used until after I left the building. I hope that neither the student nor any of the police were injured. I regret enormously that a good healthy discussion was interrupted.”

    Amnesty International USA said it was “deeply disturbed” by the use of the taser.

    “Based on the available video footage, it is virtually inconceivable that these officers could have perceived this young man as a true threat once he was on the ground,” said Larry Cox, executive director for Amnesty International USA. “For several years there have been numerous instances of officers misusing TASERs, but shocking someone who was seemingly little more than a nuisance? That belongs in the Ripley’s of poor policing.”

    Amnesty International USA added: “The use of a TASER against someone who is not violent and poses no threat to himself or others constitutes cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment.” (See “The Trouble with Tasers,” by Anne-Marie Cusac, in the April 2005 issue of The Progressive, for more examples.)”

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    Moon,

    I think you will find that more than a few of us “assholes” did NOT vote for Bush. In fact, 49% of all presidetnial votes in 2004 were not cast for GW. The winning margin for Bush was around 3% over Kerry.(Nader managed to garner around 1% of the vote.) The final tally hardly amounted to a mandate, although Bush took it as such. Had the Dems run someone who was perhaps a bit more animated than a bridge piling, they might have kicked Bushes’ ass. But alas, no.

    By the way Moon, you misspelled a word.

    B-tone

  • moonraven

    So did you [Gratuitous vulgarity deleted by Comments Editor].

    And you probably are not even typing in the dark!

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    I figured you’d pick that one up. Good job!

    Of course, this must be a crushing blow to your ego in consideration of the high standards you set for yourself, or at least that you set for others.

    B-tone

  • Clavos

    The kid deliberately set himself up to be manhandled and tasered by the cops so he could claim his fifteen minutes of fame.

    And he got exactly what he wanted to get; he even had a co-conspirator at the ready with a camera.

    Yammering about free speech in this incident is either a straw man or a symptom of terminal naiveté.

  • http://www.robot-of-the-week.com Christopher Rose

    PsychoVi-agraMan strikes again!

    You’re harshing again, young Clavos; freedom issues are worth considering in this issue regardless of the kid’s motives…

    Personally, I think both that the kid was being provocative and that the police massively over-reacted. Mind you, the US police have been incredibly bossy and controlling with the citizenry for at least as long as they have been useless in dealing with serious criminals and their crimes. Funny that, don’t you think?

  • moonraven

    I really don’t give a shit about my typos.

    I am practically perfect in everyway–a la Mary Poppins.

    And my opinion of myself is the only one that matters.

  • Les Slater

    Why would one employ rabid dogs to be part of security in an academic environment? I have nothing but contempt for these ‘police’ pigs and whoever hired them.

  • moonraven

    The administration is just a lackey to Ole Jeb.

  • Thomas

    I think that this article i incredibly biased and is an attack on the police. I agree that they went to far but ‘”What fun!” shows in his beady eyes.’ is just a personal attack and is highly inappropriate
    I have lost all respect for you and will never read any article published by you again.
    However i do not think what the police did was right.

  • Ted

    Democrat or Republican, that 50,000 volts of torture feel the same.
    Remember that when you say or think he got what he deserved for acting up.
    Should they have instead pulled a Glock and shot him dead? No.
    That means they should not have tasered him either.
    When did tasers become about retribution or even compliance?
    Tasers are torture weapons and nothing more.

  • Cindy D

    How do you catch an autistic boy who is running in traffic?

    With a taser, of course. Shoot first ask questions later.

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    The very existence of tasers and other such weaponry provides rather sad testimony against our “civilized” society. Looking beyond, it gets even sadder – to tragic proportions – when one considers the extent to which we go in developing new and more efficient means to kill each other. I know this is a tired old argument, but certainly not one that can be laid to rest unless we collectively choose to resign ourselves to self-destruction. As new, better and more varied weapons are developed, it becomes apparent that we don’t even need nukes to get the job done. It just might take a little longer.

    I find the reverence in which people hold lethal weaponry as a kind of awful sickness. Americans head the list of populations who “love” their guns. They pamper them, stroke them, kiss them, get off on them (cleaning it up immediately, I’m sure, quickly applying a fresh coat of gun oil.)

    I overheard a fellow at Mickey Ds yesterday commenting on the UF incident saying that the problem with tasers is they don’t usually kill anybody. That would of course be disappointing. Why bother? Where’s the fun? In this fellow’s rather loudly voiced opinion there is nothing greater than taking a bead on someone, squeezing off a round and watching them drop. Man, that would be a rush, wouldn’t it? After all, it’s the rush that counts. Further, this fellow’s rapt audience – all of advanced years – quietly nodded in agreement and went on about the business of chowing down their various McMuffins.

    B-tone

  • Les Slater

    B-tone,

    I agree that what you witnessed at Mc’D is sickening. There certainly is a that sort of thing in this thread. I read all of the replies so far.

    As bad as I think the cops are in this situation, you must consider who is hiring them. In this case it is the administration of an institution of higher learning.

    The U of F administration did NOT fire these cops and clearly declare that this is to NEVER happen again. They KNOW what they are doing.

    Les

  • Clavos

    “The U of F administration did NOT fire these cops and clearly declare that this is to NEVER happen again. They KNOW what they are doing.”

    You bet they do. They have a responsibility to both the taxpayers and the rest of the students to not allow disruption by a selfish publicity-seeking narcissistic asshole trying to promote himself.

    Couching this incident in terms of rights is giving this little creep far too much legitimacy.

    He dishonors the memories of real dissenters like Ghandhi and MLK.

  • Les Slater

    “Couching this incident in terms of rights is giving this little creep far too much legitimacy.”

    This has NOTHING to do with the ‘legitimacy’ of the person in question. He has a RIGHT to pose a question no matter how legit it is or how it was presented without being beat up.

    What I sniff here is the scent of a mob.

  • Clavos

    Since I’m the only commenter currently on this thread who supports the university’s actions, I don’t see where you get a “mob” out of one commenter.

    However, as a good Communist, Les, you should approve of the use of mobs to effect the will of the masses.

  • Les Slater

    The scent of the mob is not from one commentator. It is an observation from that one commentator as well as others that they are reacting hysterically with respect to this event. Certainly not being objective:

    “They have a responsibility to both the taxpayers and the rest of the students to not allow disruption by a selfish publicity-seeking narcissistic asshole trying to promote himself.”

    And who gave him the publicity? They are TRYING to send a message that if you get out of line (I guess literally in this case), you’ll get your ass stomped.

    Whatever real responsibility to taxpayers and student body can be effectively done without beating people up. Beating is what the university administration CHOSE to put forward as their solution.

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    Clav,

    Actually, on the whole I do support the UF administration. I just think that Meyer’s removal could have been accomplished without the tasers. Five or 6 campus cops should have been able to immobilize him and get him out of the building without stunning him. It’s not like the guy is “The Hulk” for cripe sakes.

    I was more or less aligned with most student activists in the ’60s and ’70s regarding civil rights in general and the opposition to the Vietnam war specifically. All of it was intensified by the thug tactics employed by Nixonians, Richard Daley, etc.

    Yet, upon reflection the equally offensive tactics of many of the young dissenters were all too often over the top and disrespectful of and harmful to others. By and large we ignored the enormous accomplishments and hardships endured by our elders and dismissed them as being shallow and materialistic. Most of my generation, especially those who were involved in the counter culture sprouted from middle and upper middle class homes. We knew nothing of hardship. Nor, it is likely do the likes of Mr. Meyer.

    I would still contend that our involvement in ‘Nam was wrong on pretty much every level. And, certainly civil rights injustices needed to be brought into the light. That was far overdue.
    For the most part MLK and his followers got it right. Many in the youth movement of the time did not.

    I find that many who have positioned themselves against our involvement in Iraq lack, not only grace, but they are often not particularly articulate. I love both Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon as actors. But I have seen appearances they have made in opposition to Bush and the Iraq war only to be largely disappointed at their apparent lack of knowledge and their inability to express themselves. I guess they need scripts.

    The one thing the ’60s generation of dissenters had within the ranks were a number of well educated and articulate people who could communicate their positions effectively. This time around, that is an element which is largely missing. Too bad.

    B-tone

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    Les,

    Actually, I don’t think Meyer was “beat up.” In the scuffle he probably got a scrape or bruise or two. The use of the tasers is really the issue here. As I’ve stated, I don’t think it was necessary, but what has also been noted here, Meyer could have in fact been harmed considerably more seriously had the tasers not been available.

    The university should back up its police, but it should also demand a harder look at how this all happened, and how, perhaps through further training, it could have been avoided. Why? Because neither can the UF administration afford to be seen as not supportive of its students, the life blood of the institution.

    B-tone

  • Clavos

    “And who gave him the publicity”

    He gave it to himself, Les. He brought an accomplice to film his confrontation, and then they posted it on YouTube, with the full foreknowledge that it would attract an enormous amount of attention.

    And it worked; superbly.

    If I were in search of a publicist, I would give this kid serious attention. He has demonstrated he’s a master at manipulation.

    “Whatever real responsibility to taxpayers and student body can be effectively done without beating people up.”

    Watch the video, Les. He physically resisted the cops. Even so, they did not “beat him up.” They attempted to control him physically, and when unable to do so (because of the vigor of his resistance), they tasered him. I’ll grant you the tasering may have been more of a reaction than was necessary, but it’s easy to sit at our keyboards and second-guess the cops while in perfect safety.

    Had he simply co-operated and let them take him into custody, none of the “beating” would have happened.

    It was a publicity stunt, and it worked like a charm.

    That kid will be making a lot of money selling us stuff we don’t need, one day.

  • Les Slater

    B-tone,

    “Actually, I don’t think Meyer was “beat up.” In the scuffle he probably got a scrape or bruise or two.”

    Nobody is saying he was beaten to within an inch of his life, but he was beat up.

    I have had much experience with dealing with the likes of Meyers and much more serious threats of disuption of public meetings. Beating up was NEVER part of the plan nor ever used.

    The beating up in the Meyers case was for show. It was a deliberate message.

    Les

  • Clavos

    Baritone,

    Sorry, I didn’t see your two last comments until just now.

    I pretty much agree with all you said, both about the UF incident and the 60s, when I was both a combat soldier, and upon my return to the World in ’66, a college student.

    Your replies are well considered AND fair. I’ve said that before about others of your comments.

    It’s true.

  • Les Slater

    “He gave it to himself, Les. He brought an accomplice to film his confrontation, and then they posted it on YouTube, with the full foreknowledge that it would attract an enormous amount of attention.”

    No beating, no publicity! It’s as simple as that. Or are you saying security was not diciplined? If so, why would the administration hire such a gang? Since the administration has not condemned their behavior, then it is clear that this was their intent of having such thugs on the payroll.

  • Clavos

    I don’t agree that it was a beating, Les.

    And he knew he’d have the publicity if he were simply stopped from asking his questions, so he deliberately asked them in a manner calculated to disrupt the entire affair and elicit an interventionist response.

    That kid is very clever. Count yourself among those manipulated by him, Les.

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    Les,

    Are you of the belief that the UF administration had prior knowledge of Meyer’s intent? Do you believe they directed the campus police to rough him up? Or perhaps one of the campus police put in a call to the university president’s office and asked how much they could do to the guy?

    While the police were there for security and control reasons, Meyer’s action, as far a they were concerned was an impromptu event. I doubt anyone expected it outside of Meyer and his cohorts.

    I think you give too much credit – or in this case too much blame – to the university. I think the school admins have a lot more important fish to fry than concerning themselves with one nut job student. And again, don’t forget Va Tech, and note today’s shootings on a Delaware campus. The Va Tech administration was chastized for not reacting fast enough. What if Meyer had suddenly produced a weapon?

    Overseeing the welfare of nearly 50000 students, the faculty and staff of UF, or any college campus is an enormous responsibility. You seem to assume they are all closet Nazis bent on maximum control of student life and politics. I just don’t see it.

    And another thing. What the hell was the “question” in the first place? I never have heard what Meyer had asked Kerry.

    B-tone

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    Clav,

    By the way, thanks. I know we don’t altogether agree on some of the issues brought up here, but I, too, have felt that your comments are by and large well considered and fair.

    I’m sure Moon would agree. The three of us should go out for coffee sometime. (Well, Moon would probably prefer battery acid, but it could be fun, don’t you think?)

    B-tone

  • Les Slater

    “And another thing. What the hell was the “question” in the first place? I never have heard what Meyer had asked Kerry.”

    I heard it was something about a Yale secret society.

  • moonraven

    It SHOULD have been, Les.

    I actually saw one of the pathetic debates between Tweedledee and Tweedledumb on one of my trips to the US in 2004.

    How LOOOOOOOOOW can you go?

  • Les Slater

    “While the police were there for security and control reasons, Meyer’s action, as far a they were concerned was an impromptu event. I doubt anyone expected it outside of Meyer and his cohorts.”

    I have much experience with security of public meetings. I have been in charge of such security. Anyone that has any real experience will expect these provocations WILL happen, not every time, but often enough that you have to know how to handle them WITHOUT giving those that provoke what they want. It REQUIRES that you have experience and that anyone new brought on the team be trained. It requires dicipline. Some on the team might loose their cool. It is required that those with experience remove anyone that breaks down under pressure be removed immediately.

    “I think you give too much credit – or in this case too much blame – to the university.”

    It’s a question of percentages, of probabilities. The telling sign here is how did the university react. They did not condemn the actions of the police. It is clear that the university has no intent at a rectification here.

    The response that was observed at McDonals should be another clue. It’s too bad they don’t kill. Do you think this was an independent conclusion from a rational thought process? Of course not. This is being fed. Do you think the university does not know that? You have to be naive to belive that. They do know,

    and it’s full speed ahead.

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    Well, okay. If you say so.

  • Les Slater

    Me saying so does not make anything.

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    No. No it doesn’t.

  • moonraven

    This has run out of gas.

    How about those Jena Six, racist piggies?

  • Les Slater

    I was at a Free the Jena Six demo in Detroit yesterday.

  • moonraven

    Good to hear that, Les.

    Racism is VERY alive and EXTREMELY well in the ole USA.

    1.2 Iraquis killed under its banner and counting.

  • Mooja

    I tend agree with a few of the previous posters that this fellow’s main objective was to disrupt and subvert free discourse at the event.

    As to the current state of US police brutality; I can only imagine what manner of violence this fellow would have provoked upon his person had he shown so little respect for his peers, not to mention a sitting US Senator, and proceeded to engage in this despicable behavior 150 years ago.

    I believe in, even cherish, the rebellious American spirit if it supports an honest and true belief. However I also believe this spirit can be exercised within the boundaries mutual respect and decency. This fellow’s actions flew in the face of any kind of respect or decency. IMO was he was tazer victim from the moment he walked into the room.

  • Doug Hunter

    “I was at a Free the Jena Six demo in Detroit yesterday.”

    So you believe beating someone into unconsciousness should not get you jail time if your black. Interesting position.

  • Les Slater

    “So you believe beating someone into unconsciousness should not get you jail time if your black. Interesting position.”

    Do you know anything about this case?

  • Doug Hunter

    I know the kids you want freed are criminals who beat someone in unconsciousness. It looks open and shut to me.

  • Les Slater

    “I know the kids you want freed are criminals who beat someone in unconsciousness. It looks open and shut to me.”

    They have been in jail for 291 days now.

    The victim in this case was released from the hospital within two hours and attended a social event that evening.

    Six students were charged with assault. Before the opening of the trial of Mychal Bell, the PIG District Attorney Reed Walters upgraded the assault charges to attempted murder. On the first day of the trial this same PIG reduced the charges to aggravated second-degree battery and conspiracy to commit same. This was a ploy to further prejudice all-white jury. There never was any basis for charging murder. This how these PIGS work.

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    I don’t know all the relevant facts regarding the Jena 6 case. It does seem to me though, that the prosecutor has made a mountain out of a mole hill. Similar incidents happen in urban schools with some regularity. Some racially motivated. Some not. Depending on the circumstances and the outcome, most such incidents are handled quickly and with little fanfare. The outcome of such cases may or may not resemble justice, but they are generally no big deal, for the media at any rate.

    The “beating” was apparently not serious and there had certainly been some provocation. At most, this incident probably warranted no more than a relative slap to the knuckles. The people responsible for the hanging nooses should receive at least a similar punishment, perhaps more.

    Just as at Duke, it looks as though we have an overzealous prosecutor looking for his fifteen minutes.

    While I have no use for OJ, the same might be true in Vegas robbery fiasco. Charging him with kidnapping for ordering someone to move from one place in the room to another as heard on the audio tape? Really! OJ should either be in jail or in his grave for double murder. But this robbery deal, when all is said and done, may blow up in the DA’s face, leaving Oranthall James standing behind the defense table, smiling in relief once again.

    B-tone

  • Clavos

    “They have been in jail for 291 days now.”

    Not true. After their arrest in early December 2006, they were released on bail in early January 2007.

    Only Bell remains in jail (and only since late June, when he was convicted at trial), pending appeals.

  • Doug Hunter

    I’m not sure what PIG means in your context but the charges do seem excessive. That’s not an unusual thing in our legal system. Most nonviolent drug offenders spending life in prison receive much more sympathy from me than some violent criminals serving a couple years.

    If this was about unfair jail sentences one could easily find better examples, it’s not. These kids are pawns in a much bigger game with much higher stakes. In regards to race, the emotions are so high that an open and honest debate is impossible so we resort to using this kind of incident as a proxy.

  • Les Slater

    Thanks Clav for the correction. I was wrong on that count.

    “If this was about unfair jail sentences one could easily find better examples,…”

    This is true, very true. I do not have control of which ones get broadly debated. This is a case of unfair prosecution AND a clear case of RACISM. I will condemn it.

  • Clavos

    I agree, Les, that this situation is all about racism (on both sides), and I’m concerned that it (the controversy) will be blown out of proportion as a result.

    And all over a bunch of stupid adolescents (black AND white). What nonsense.

    And I know; “stupid adolescents” is redundant.

    I just hope it doesn’t result in additional violence.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “1.2 Iraquis [sic] killed under its banner and counting.”

    That’s all? Just one guy and the leg of his bodyguard?

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “I was at a Free the Jena Six demo in Detroit yesterday.”

    Why am I not surprised?

    The same guy who denounces the police for removing a lunatic student (who was trying to incite a riot) from a public event featuring a former Presidential candidate and current Senator SUPPORTS six black “youths” who attacked a white student from behind, and then proceeded to beat him so badly he required hospitalization.

    Oh, and one of those black “youths” was on probation for – get this – two other assault convictions within the previous two years.

    So, yeah, let’s free all the violent thugs who gang-attack people because of their race. How “liberal” of you…

    (For a synopsis of this case, please read this.)

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    The “beating” was apparently not serious and there had certainly been some provocation. At most, this incident probably warranted no more than a relative slap to the knuckles. The people responsible for the hanging nooses should receive at least a similar punishment, perhaps more.

    Hanging a noose on a tree deserves a greater punishment than a violent, racially-motivated gang attack on a helpless victim?

    FWIW, the students who hung the noose on the tree WERE punished – they were suspended from school, and rightly so. And I agree that the original “attempted murder” charges were bullshit.

    But at least one of these attackers has a long history of violent crime, and was on probation FOR ASSAULT when he decided to participate in this attack. And THAT is why he is still in jail.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “I agree, Les, that this situation is all about racism (on both sides), and I’m concerned that it (the controversy) will be blown out of proportion as a result.”

    It already has been blown out of proportion, with the “Justice Brothers” (Rev. Al and Rev. Jesse) having descending on the town like the race-baiting, publicity-seeking vultures they are.

    When white men are falsely accused of raping a black woman, the Justice Bros. will be there, denouncing “white racism.”

    And when six black students attack a white student, the Justice Bros. will be there too, denouncing…”white racism.”

    You get the picture…

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    I wonder how all of this regarding the Jena 6 would be playing out if it had been a black student attacked by a group of whites? What charges would have been brought, if any? What kind of media coverage would there be, if any?

    Jim Crow still lurks in the backwaters of the south and elsewhere. I live in Indy. On any given day I see stars and bars flags displayed on people’s front porches, fluttering at the back of pick-up trucks and on license plates and bumper stickers. Some defend these displays claiming that they fondly harken back to a grander and more gracious “lifestyle” or some such bullshit. The “lifestyle” they harken back to is the enslavement of human beings. The displaying of the stars and bars is a direct message of hate against African Americans.

    The placing of nooses from the tree on the school grounds was equally odious. I don’t condone the physical attack, but the appearance of the nooses made some kind of physical confrontation virtually inevitable. Again, I don’t condone the violence, but neither do I condone hatred and stupidity. When hate and stupidity come together, violence won’t be far behind.

    B-tone

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “I wonder how all of this regarding the Jena 6 would be playing out if it had been a black student attacked by a group of whites? What charges would have been brought, if any? What kind of media coverage would there be, if any?”

    There probably would have been wall-to-wall media coverage for a couple weeks, and serious criminal charges (hate crimes?) filed, but the end result would have been the same: Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton coming to town to denounce whites.

    “Jim Crow still lurks in the backwaters of the south and elsewhere.”

    And other things, as well.

  • Clavos

    What I meant by blown out of proportion was descending into violence. The situation in Jena at this moment is a powder keg needing only one small spark to set it off.

    “six black “youths” who attacked a white student from behind, and then proceeded to beat him so badly he required hospitalization.”

    …where he was treated and released. Later that evening he was dancing at a party, so apparently it wasn’t much of a “beating.”

    This is also what I meant about out of proportion; this was a fight between kids; the kind that used to happen all the time when I was a kid.

    The authorities should have stayed the hell out of it and let the kids work it out themselves.

    The way it stands now, with hundreds of people tensely staring each other down, it’ll be a miracle if somebody doesn’t get offed before it’s over.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “This is also what I meant about out of proportion; this was a fight between kids; the kind that used to happen all the time when I was a kid.”

    When you were a kid, it was commonplace for six students to attack one student from behind?

    Boy, I would have hated going to your high school…

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “The authorities should have stayed the hell out of it and let the kids work it out themselves.”

    That’s interesting. I felt the same way about Columbine. :-/

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    “The way it stands now, with hundreds of people tensely staring each other down, it’ll be a miracle if somebody doesn’t get offed before it’s over.”

    And who do we have to blame for that? The white kid who got attacked by six black kids?

    Or Jesse Jackson? Or Al Sharpton?

  • Clavos

    The authorities, who should never have busted anybody, and just let the kids work it out amongst themselves.

    I think I already said that, didn’t I?

    Were you not paying attention, RJ?.

    And before you feel too sorry for the redneck kid, remember that he got his ass kicked for hanging nooses in the so-called “white” tree because the black kids sat under it.

  • REMF

    Hey RJ, “The Lonely Guy” is playing on channel 19 right now…

  • Clavos

    “When you were a kid, it was commonplace for six students to attack one student from behind?”

    Ever hear of the high school gangs, RJ?

    Yes, it happened; and afterwards the one kid would come back with 8 of HIS friends and kick the shit out of the original six.

    We had great fun, and nobody ever dreamed of involving the cops.

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    The authorities, who should never have busted anybody, and just let the kids work it out amongst themselves.

    I think I already said that, didn’t I?

    Were you not paying attention, RJ?.

    And before you feel too sorry for the redneck kid, remember that he got his ass kicked for hanging nooses in the so-called “white” tree because the black kids sat under it.

    Clavos, you should really read this.

    It contains a lot more facts about this case than you are likely to learn from the MSM…

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ

    Ever hear of the high school gangs, RJ?

    Yes. Quite a few homicides committed by them annually. You might have heard of that too.

    Yes, it happened; and afterwards the one kid would come back with 8 of HIS friends and kick the shit out of the original six.

    We had great fun, and nobody ever dreamed of involving the cops.

    It sure sounds like fun! Definitely nothing the authorities should know about…

  • Clavos

    I read your link, RJ.

    1. I think the Kansas City Star might be offended for being excluded from the MSM.

    2. It’s a column, an opinion piece, so any “facts” presented must be verified before accepting.

    3. In any case, I don’t disagree with most of what Whitlock says. He points out that the racist DA overcharged the Bell kid, and that was what precipitated the escalation of the whole incident.

    4. The “adults” should have stayed the hell out of it.

  • Les Slater

    In RJ’s link Jason Whitlock says:

    “There was no ‘schoolyard fight’ as a result of nooses being hung on a whites-only tree.”

    This is nonsense, a serious distortion of reality. The nooses were the beginning of an assault on the black students. There were many fights leading up to the incident that are the subject of the charges. The incidents are not disconnected.

    The uneven handling of all the incidents clearly demonstrated racial bias. This is the atmosphere where the PIG District Attorney plied his trade. This PIG was openly part of the attack within one week of the nooses incident claiming it was an ’innocent prank’, and threatening the black kids if they didn’t stop complaining.

  • Clavos

    Calling a DA a pig is redundant, Les. They’re lawyers.

  • Les Slater

    A young woman wearing an electronic piece of art was arrested at Logan Airport yesterday.

    “The trooper, joined by others with submachine guns, confronted her in front of the terminal.

    “She was immediately told to stop, to raise her hands and not to make any movement, so we could observe all her movements to see if she was trying to trip any type of device,” Pare said. “Had she not followed the protocol, we might have used deadly force.”

    He added, “She’s lucky to be in a cell as opposed to the morgue.”

    What dangerous dumb-fucks these cops are. Somebody should lock the lot of them up for the safety of the public.

  • Les Slater

    Actually, it sounds more than a little like Blackwater.

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    There are no doubt some trigger happy idiots in uniform out there. Eventually, we may all be required to enter an airport terminal naked and submit to probing cavity searches prior to boarding a plane. (One can only hope that as a service to customers, they will remove polyps and give us a hemorrhoid and diverticular count along with our boarding passes.) “Optional paper gowns will be available in the overhead compartment on board the plane. Thank you for flying Derriere.”

  • Clavos

    “There are no doubt some trigger happy idiots in uniform out there”

    No doubt.

    And about a hundred times as many trigger happy idiots without uniforms.

    Personally, I’d rather be confronted by one of the former than one of the latter.

  • http://www.republicofdave.com Dave Nalle

    I know it’s all fashionable to blame the ‘pigs’ the agents of oppression and all that. And they do overreact sometimes. But in the case of this idiot girl arrested at Logan Airport, they deserve a bit of a break. She had a circuit board with active LEDs flashing on it attached to her chest and was carrying what looked like a ball of plastic explosive. What are they supposed to think?

    She’s an idiot, just like Andrew Meyer. Very much the same sort of attention-seeking egoist by all accounts.

    Dave

  • Les Slater

    “She had a circuit board with active LEDs flashing on it attached to her chest and was carrying what looked like a ball of plastic explosive. What are they supposed to think?”

    Dave, are you serious?

    They weren’t thinking. They were fuckin’ idiots. They are totally clueless.

    Flashing LEDs, SHEESH!

    Blithering, blithering IDIOTS!

  • Clavos

    Both, no doubt, raised by parents who didn’t believe in teaching their kids self discipline or in “inhibiting” them.

  • REMF

    “And about a hundred times as many trigger happy idiots without uniforms. Personally, I’d rather be confronted by one of the former than one of the latter.”
    – Clavos

    Like William Calley, perhaps?

  • Moonraven

    The point here is that the US is an extremely racist country.

    [Personal attack deleted by Comments Editor]

  • JustOneMan

    They should have shot her in the head FIRST..than figured out if the bomb was real…

    Those of you dising the cops are a bunch of morons who still think if we dont think about bad things (ie terrorist, Muslim assholes and mass murderers) they wont happen..

    In todays world it must be shoot first and ask questions after..

    JOM

  • http://rapturenutballs.blogspot.com Baritone

    JOM,

    Gosh, it’s certainly going to be a great and exciting world to live in if you get your wish. People will be dropping like rocks all around us. We should start taking bets about whether or not we will make it to work and back. We can learn what its really like to live in Baghdad. That’d be great.

    Hey, that motherfucker’s got a bomb! BLAM!!! Oh, sorry bro. Never mind, it was just a loaf of bread. Oh, well. At least the trains will run on time.

    B-tone

  • Dr Dreadful

    Don’t worry about JOM, Baritone. He’s too busy picking the scabs off his knuckles to do any shooting.

  • zingzing

    “In todays world it must be shoot first and ask questions after…”-JOM

    yee-haw, cowboy!

    jom is like, the coolest mother-fuckin mother fucker on the fucking planet, don’t you think, guys?

    guys?

    come on, dudes… he’s soooo cool what with his “shoot first, ask questions later” attitude. man. it’s like “ballz to the wall,” man, all the time with that dude. he’s got his head on straight, his gun at his side and his cock in his hand at all times, man.

    he’s a wreckin’ machine, man, wreckin’ all those fools who want to stand up to him. i bet he makes his bitches cum every time, man, not like you assholes.

    wait. i thought we all agreed that it’s obvious jom never gets laid.

    oh well. theory shot. (we’ll asks questions later.)

  • Clavos

    zing, wanna pass that joint around, dude??

  • zingzing

    and rj… jesus christ. you’re such a white apologist. any time white vs. black comes up you just jump on the white man’s side. never mind that the white kid deserved to get beat up for throwing out racial taunts, and if six kids wanted one kid dead, then he would have been dead, not dancing at a party later that night.

    yeah, the black kids should have been arrested. for getting in a fight. the white kid should have been arrested to. disturbing the peace, etc.

    (wasn’t there something about another white kid with a shotgun who was wrestled to the ground? didn’t he pull it out of his truck at a gas station? didn’t that same d.a. charge the black kids with theft of a weapon and the white kid with nothing, even though he whipped out a fucking shotgun at a gas station?)

    the d.a. is a racist, pure and simple. he doesn’t ever charge the white kids who are equally responsible, or he gives them powder-puff plea deals. then he smacks the black kids with attempted murder of a kid who is dancing at parties before the charges are even brought up. pathetic.

    rj, you need some perspective. this is a fucked up world, but it’s a little better for you because you are white. you get a leg up on the world, and so do i. because we are white. straight up. pure and simple.

    right now, i’m living at the border of a nice and not-so-nice area of brooklyn. i walked a few blocks in the wrong direction and i was in the middle of a ghetto. projects. people prostrate on the street, drinking in the middle of the day, people yelling at nothing; repulsive little stores selling total crap, nothing around but liquor stores and unisex hair salons. imagine growing up in that. that’s something you don’t escape all too easily. you have to have money to make it in this world, or some institution that believes in you, and those kids are very unlikely to find it.

    jena is a place like that. it’s racially divided along a highway line. growing up in one part, you’re lucky; growing up in the other, you’ve got an uphill battle.

    racism is obviously in that place, whether or not a majority of the citizens believe in it, it’s there. there was a fight, but it was not attempted murder.

    this shouldn’t really be about white vs. black. it should be about a racist d.a.. but it’s blown up now. those kids didn’t deserve to rot in prison, and their parents shouldn’t have had to mortgage their houses to pay for bail. it shouldn’t have happened.

  • zingzing

    clavos i have no drugs that’s the problem

  • Clavos

    “it shouldn’t have happened.”

    that da is jim crow thru and thru.

    bingo, bro.

  • Les Slater

    “In todays world it must be shoot first and ask questions after..”

    Can you spell ‘Blackwater’?

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