Sunday, March 25, 2012

Right to Assemble (Peacefully)

This is going to be a big week in Virginia politics. The District Attorney has said he intends to prosecute the protestors rather than drop the charges. The Richmond-Times Dispatch had a good update regarding the situation and the online version includes comments from readers. Here is another summary on the issue at hand from a Charlottesville paper (online) and below is a screenshot of my comment posted on that online site. You may notice I said 31 arrested protestors - the official count according to the RTD was 30 and I won't make that mistake when posting again (but I cannot delete that error). ;-)

The people arrested on March 3rd will be arraigned by Judge Cheek this Friday, March 30th at the courthouse on 920 Hull Street. This courthouse is located at the corner of Hull and Commerce (which is what the 9th St. bridge becomes).

Judge Cheek does not allow children in the courtroom so if parents would like to come and be present we can gather in the area around 8:30 and decide who will stay outside with children and who will go into the courtroom. If you have any friends who would like to come along, kids or no kids, we will figure it out. Some of us will be inside to observe and some of us will be outside supporting those arrested and the observers. Just as "it takes a village" to raise a child it also takes a village to keep watch over our rights as citizens. We cannot rely just on the reporters, lawyers, and judges. We should continue to observe first-hand as citizens.

A little bird told me that our Picnic-in protests could actually be helpful evidence to those arrested, primarily because it shows the arbitrary nature in which the "law" is being applied. So, JOIN US this Thursday around 12:30 for yet another fun day at the Capitol. I love that my girls are really starting to feel the Capitol grounds are theirs as citizens - to roll down the hill, eat a picnic with mom, and play with friends. The Capitol grounds has never felt so vibrant to me as it does with children running around.

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