“"We want to support everyone's 1st Amendment right to protest, but we also want to ensure public safety and not allow people to commit violent acts," Cmdr. Andy Smith told The Times.”Amazing.
For those with short memories let me share with you the first amendment.
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”It says we have the right to “peaceably assemble.” What that meant was attend church, join a political club, hang out with your homies. I am willing to admit that a peaceful protest might be included in that but it is not listed as a specific right.
It says we have the right to “petition the government.” A petition is a document listing what is wrong and what you want done about it. It does not include any of the following activities.
“People protesting George Zimmerman's acquittal marched along Crenshaw Boulevard on Monday night, stomping on cars, chasing bystanders and storming a Wal-Mart.”The people who owned the cars were not the government. The bystanders were not the government. Wal-Mart is not the government.
I think it is time for us to realize that it is not a constitutionally protected right to act like an ignorant thug just because you are bored. It is not a constitutionally protected right to attack any one you feel like it because you are unhappy about something that had nothing to do with you.
You might make a case for such activities in the Declaration of Independence.
“But when a long Train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a Design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future Security.”But that has nothing to do with a local court case decided by a local jury in another state.
The Declaration also put this qualifier on revolution:
“Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient Causes;...”You don’t start a revolution because you disagree with the six people who heard all the evidence.
Maybe Los Angeles Police officers need to take a class on the Constitution. Maybe the Los Angeles Police need to stop reading the Los Angeles Times.
Maybe Zimmerman was innocent of anything but self-defense. The six people who heard all the evidence seemed to think so no matter what the media talking heads want you to believe.
homo unius libri