Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Evidence of a Culture of Freedom ... Still

Mikaela admits:
I've been nervous lately. Too much governmental scariness happening. Feels very very dangerous. But I was reminded by a good and wise friend that we still have the freedom to dissent. Bush is still on the defensive. He's still trying to sway our hearts and minds, which indicates that we still have power that he wants. Our thoughtful dissent still carries weight. The people still matter. Freedom still operates, even if under seige.

Today, this news from Democracy Now about law students at Georgetown who were brave and stood up and turned their backs on Attorney General Alberto Gonzales as he gave a speech defending NSA's domestic spying program authorized by secret Executive Order by our Herr Bush. They weren't arrested. They weren't carried away. After Gonzales scurried back into his hole, the law school sponsored a panel discussion about the program's illegality. These are really really good signs. Yes, I'm sure pictures were taken of each of the dissenters. Yes, I'm sure they have files now if they didn't before. But they're still walking the streets, taking full advantage of their freedom of speech, and exercising their right to dissent. May the People save America.

On Tuesday, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales appeared at Georgetown Law School to deliver an address defending the NSA domestic spy programs. During the course of his address, nearly 30 students stood up one-by-one and turned their back on Gonzales in protest. A panel of law professors addressed Gonzales’ speech, calling it illegal. ...

During Gonzales' speech, the protesting students stayed standing throughout the speech. Five students stood up and wore black hoods reminiscent of ones used at Abu Ghraib. The hooded students held a banner reading the words of Benjamin Franklin: “Those who would sacrifice liberties in the name of security deserve neither.”

Third-year law student Devon Chaffee, said later, “We believe that as law students, we must stand up for the rule of law over the creation of a culture of fear.”