Sunday, June 19, 2005

When the government gets thuggish -- one story from this month

This is a post worth reading.

I assume it's true. Why would someone make it all up?

This guy, Jeremy Lassen, heard about a visit to an art gallery by Secret Service agents. The art gallery had some anti-Bush pieces showing, so government agents showed up and intimidated the art gallery owners.

That's un-American.

Then, this guy makes up some pictures of Bush and guns to show how thuggish the government is becoming, posts them onto his website and sends them around to other websites, and two months later, *he* gets a visit from Secret Service agents at his job!

After 45 minutes of an interview where they start out nicely but then say they want to interview his wife and his boss and they want to get a medical release form to see what medications he might be taking, and does he belong to any organizations, and how can he be an artist and suggest that he retract the pictures by taking them offline, they guy is so freaked out he takes down his websites.

Can you believe that?

Read the thing here.

Because if this is true (and why would someone just make the whole thing up?), then things are getting far too Big Brother around here.

This is a story that should get picked up by the corporate media. It is un-American.


Anonymous said...

Why don't you write a press release about it, distribute it and see if anyone picks it up?

FightforJustice said...

This reminds me of when President Clinton came to Chicago and some detractors shouted something derogatory but not threatening at him. They were arrested, threatened, and so on. So this kind of thing is not peculiar to a Republican adminstration.

MDS said...

Fight For Justice, you may be right that this is not peculiar to a Republican administration, but you have your facts wrong about the incident with Clinton in Chicago. A woman came up to Clinton at the Taste of Chicago in 1996 and said, "You suck and you should die." The Secret Service briefly questioned her and her husband, which is completely appropriate given the circumstances. When she screamed profanities at the Secret Service and Chicago police, the Chicago police decided to arrest her for disorderly conduct.

Now, I happen to believe that almost all elected officials -- Democrats and Republicans -- do far too much to isolate themselves from people who might want to criticize them. It's absurd, for instance, that all the people who want to ask presidential candidates questions at the "town hall" debates have to submit their questions in advance, and that both parties carefully manage their conventions to keep protesters far away. But the current administration is absolutely unprecedented in its refusal to allow Americans to express their thoughts to the president unless their thoughts are closely aligned with the Republican Party's.

Anonymous said...

The Internet poses all kinds of new problems regarding free speech. People with blogs or people on message boards should be forewarned. If you celebrate free speech - liberal or conservative - and people know about it, there may be retaliation of some type.

Bill Baar said...

I was ok with Dorthy Tillman marching into the Art Institute to take down the painting of Harold Washington.

Nathan Kaufman said...

I heard about the event below. You may find it interesting to attend (short notice -- tonight!)

>Hosted by: The Chicago Lawyers' Chapter of the Federalist Society & The
>Criminal Law Practice Group
>Featuring: Patrick J. Fitzgerald, U.S. Attorney for the Northern
>District of Illinois
> Prof. Richard Epstein, University of Chicago Law
> Prof. Geoffrey R. Stone, University of Chicago Law
>Moderator: Craig Dellimore, Political Editor, WBBM Newsradio 780 AM
>Date: Tuesday, June 21
>Time: 5:30 - Cocktails
> 6:00 - Dinner
> 7:00 - Program
>Where: Chicago Athletic Association
> 12 South Michigan Ave.
> Chicago
>Cost: $35.00 per person ($20.00 for students) - Cash Bar
>RSVP: Christopher Rohrbacher at (312) 407-0940 or

Nathan Kaufman said...

what are your thoughts on Tribune circulation?