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Entries in Civil Disobedience (88)

Friday
Apr242015

FreeKeeneNews - Manchester Activists To Protest DUI Checkpoint Tonight 

Manchester Activists to Protest DUI Checkpoint Tonight

Dozens of activists will converge in downtown Manchester starting at 10:00 p.m. tonight to divert traffic away from a sobriety checkpoint planned by Manchester Police Department. Activists are protesting the stopping of drivers without reasonable suspicion of having committed a crime. They are also protesting the federal government's involvement in local policing through federal grants used to fund the checkpoint.

Contact:
Joël Valenzuela
(602) 510-9966
Wednesday
Apr222015

FreeKeeneNews - State Rep & Activists Smoke Cannabis at State House Front Door 

Dozens Defy Cannabis Prohibition in Front of State House

State representative Kyle Tasker toked up with the diverse group.  For the sixth consecutive year, activists smoked cannabis out in front of the New Hampshire state house on April 20th at 4:20pm, in heroic defiance of the state’s draconian drug laws that consider cannabis possession to be a misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail and up to a $2,000 fine.
 

Dozens of New Hampshire’s inhabitants braved constant rain and cold to come out for the epic event, which also featured state representative Kyle Tasker toking up.  Tasker later said in an interview exclusive to Free Keene, “The message sent by law enforcement and heard loud and clear by protesters was police have more important things to do than harass otherwise law abiding citizens over marijuana possession and public use even when it was clear there were amounts present at the protest that could be charged as a felony. The New Hampshire senate needs to consider how productive it is to keep an unenforced, indeed nearly unenforceable law on the books with which the public disagrees.”

No one has ever been arrested at these events despite mass civil disobedience of the cannabis possession laws taking place right outside the state house’s front doors. In fact, obvious police presence was near-zero this year, with a lone state trooper sitting across the street idling in his cruiser for a short time. In previous years, troopers have stood inside the state house windows, watching with crossed arms. This year, nothing!

Rich Paul kicked off the ceremony with his traditional invocation and a short speech. Afterwards the megaphone was open to anyone with something to say, and several attendees spoke out on various subjects. See the raw video here, courtesy Garret Ean. Here’s an edited clip of the beginning of the event.

Even mainstream media is speculating that cannabis decrim may pass in NH this year. 80% of the house voted for decrim already and now it awaits its turn in the NH senate. However, the state’s governor, Maggie Hassan has promised to veto it. This, despite the fact that she admitted to having used it when she was younger. Do you think Maggie would be better off today had she gotten a misdemeanor on her record had she been caught with her pot in her college days?

Unless Maggie finds her conscience, the senate would have to pass cannabis decrim with a veto-proof margin (as did the house – solidly) to protect the legislation from her veto. Now is a good time to contact “your” state senator and talk to them about how they feel about decriminalizing cannabis.

The next event for 2016 is already on facebook.




Monday
Apr202015

FreeKeeneNews - Cannabis Civil Disobedients to Converge on NH State House at 4:20pm Today!

Cannabis Civil Disobedience at NH House Today, 4:20pm!

For the sixth consecutive year, protesters will be taking to the State House lawn this Monday, April 20th at 4:20pm to demand the repeal of the continued war on pot smokers. Some will likely engage in civil disobedience. Despite roadblocks put up by NH governor Maggie Hassan, we hope that this will be the year that we win more liberty for our people. Please join us today at the State House lawn at 4:20pm!

Feel free to get in touch with me if you have questions or would like to interview an activist,
Ian Freeman
Blogger, FreeKeene.com
Sunday
Apr052015

FreeKeeneNews - Video of Keene "Swatting" 

Video of Keene Police "Swatting"

VIDEO:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31T9bJihins

Thursday night Keene police received a call from a man claiming to be holding hostages at gunpoint inside 39 Central Square. As a result, at least eight officers (some toting M4 ricfles) surrounded the building. Later, the BEARCAT rolled up and at least eight more officers, armed up with SWAT gear, piled out and entered via the front door.


Multiple liberty activists responded to the scene after local independent journalist Jared Goodell posted the news that armed police were on Central Square. (Goodell’s personal facebook profile is quickly becoming a go-to destination for breaking news in Keene.) Keene police kept the initial call from the alleged hostage-taker off of their two-way radio system, in what was the beginning of a campaign to preclude the public from actually knowing anything about what was happening in their midst.

All people in the streets knew was the police were hiding behind brick walls, brandishing guns and observing the block of buildings that includes 39 Central Square. To their credit, the Keene police were not preventing people from taking the risk of walking downtown, but they were at the same time not informing anyone about the risk that may have been present.

When asked, multiple pairs of the officers surrounding the building would deny any knowledge of why they were there. Why lie? After I asked three sets of officers what was happening, I finally got the barest minimum of information out of Michael “Pepper” Kopcha. He admitted there may be a situation in the building, but again, gave no information as to what danger may be present.

There are arguments both for and against how they responded, but there’s no good reason to keep people in the dark about what is happening, especially if they want people to believe they are “serving and protecting” them. An argument favoring their response tactics is that you can’t be too careful in a hostage situation and therefore the police responded appropriately. An argument against their tactics is that they had no real intel on what was happening besides the claim of someone on the phone, and as a result inconvenienced everyone in the building as they went room-to-room, floor-by-floor and cleared the premises.

What if the caller wanted to see how police would respond and used the data collected to walk them into a trap next time? What if the caller wanted to distract the police from an actual crime being committed across town? How many officers were available for other calls when nearly twenty were on-scene? Further, what if the caller was actually with the police and made the false call to give police a reason to demand access to peoples’ homes?

The standard explanation is that these “swatting” calls are made by some teenage or twenty-something prankster who just wants to harass the target location. Of course, with adrenaline-fueled cops, these swatting pranks could cost the building’s inhabitants their lives, if, for instance, a trigger-happy cop shoots someone for holding a camera the cop thought was a gun.

The caller in this case, according to the Sentinel, claimed to have hostages, gave a location, demanded money, and hung up. Is that justification for this level of response? What do you think the proper response should be to a phoned-in claim of hostages being held at gunpoint?

Whatever the proper response, the Keene police should inform the people of what is going on rather than putting people at risk from their ignorance.


Feel free to get in touch with me if you have questions or would like to interview an activist,
Ian Freeman
Blogger, FreeKeene.com
Tuesday
Mar032015

Localism Blossoms at Free State Project’s Liberty Forum 

The Free State Project’s 8th annual Liberty Forum features local small businesses, entrepreneurs, think tanks, non-profits, independent media, and more    

 

March 2, 2015 – Manchester, NH – In addition to a stellar line-up of renowned speakers, including Sheriff Mack, Jeffrey Tucker, Lyn Ulbricht, and Scott Horton, the Free State Project’s 8th annual Liberty Forum showcases local small businesses, farms, entrepreneurs, think tanks, non-profits, Bitcoin enthusiasts, activists, politicians, New Hampshire’s independent media, and more. This four-day conference will be held March 5-8, 2015 at the Radisson Hotel in downtown Manchester.

 

On Friday, Rick Broussard, editor of New Hampshire Magazine, will share some of the essential, enlightening and enjoyable things to do and see in New Hampshire. Jody Underwood, FSP board member and co-owner of Bardo Farm in Croydon, where she serves as chair of the school board, will talk about “Rethinking Public Education.” Lee Webster will speak about “Dying Free,” discussing the wide range of choices available to NH citizens, including family- and community-led home funerals and burials, and how to make after-death care affordable, environmentally responsible, and meaningful. Kate Baker, Executive Director of the Network for Educational Opportunity, an education resource and networking organization and the first organization to implement the NH Education Tax Credit Scholarships, discusses “Moving to the Free State with Children: A Discussion of Education Options in NH.” Union Leader columnist Charlie Arlinghaus, who serves as president of New Hampshire’s premier free market think tank, The Josiah Bartlett Center, will speak about “New Hampshire’s Complicated Relationship with Liberty Through the Years.” Executive entrepreneur and ziftrCOIN CEO Bob Wilkins will address “Cryptocurrency Continues to Gain Traction, But What Will It Take to Bring It Into the Mainstream?” Following an Entrepreneur Roundtable discussion, a reception will take place at 6 p.m. celebrating entrepreneurs of the Granite State. This will be followed by dinner and Friday night’s keynote speaker, Emmy award-winning journalist, Ben Swann. The mayor of Manchester, Ted Gatsas, will also be in attendance.  

 

On Saturday, Matt Simon, legislative analyst for the Marijuana Policy Project, will discuss “The Future of Legalization Efforts in New Hampshire.” Members of the New Hampshire Liberty Alliance will share more information about this non-profit organization, explain how to get involved, and how to support pro-liberty charitable causes in New Hampshire. Meir G. Kohn, professor of economics at Dartmouth College, will share his personal journey of “How I Became a Libertarian.” Former gubernatorial candidate, millennial Andrew Hemingway, will talk about “Technology Disrupting Government.” FSP founder and lecturer at Dartmouth College, Jason Sorens, will delve into what the future holds in a talk entitled “NH in 2035.” A panel discussion will highlight FSP participants’ community centers located across the state. At 6 p.m., a reception for New Hampshire legislators and executive councilors will provide an opportunity to meet liberty-friendly legislators and other elected officials who are fighting to preserve New Hampshire’s tradition of freedom. This reception is followed by dinner and keynote speaker, Patrick Byrne, CEO of Overstock.

 

During Liberty Forum, local independent media will be broadcasting, including the nationally syndicated radio show Free Talk Live, Granite Grok, IPM Nation, and several local podcast such as Flaming Freedom, The Rebel Love Show, and Off the Air Live. The “Activist and Entrepreneur Exhibits” features 34 local businesses, non-profit organizations, gun manufacturers, and more. An art workshop, and a flash mob are also planned. A screening of the independently-made documentary “101 Reasons: Liberty Lives in New Hampshire” will take place on Friday, March 6, 2015, at 12:30 p.m.  

 

A full list of speakers and the schedule can be viewed at the Liberty Forum’s website, where tickets are on sale. Basic Tickets are $150 for Friday and Saturday’s programming. One Day Passes are available for $80. Basic Ticket and One Day Pass holders may attended the Friday and Saturday keynote speakers; doors open after the scheduled dinners.