Review of Delaware County Biodemocracy Legal Fundraiser
18 Aug 2005 15:38 GMT
Review of the Panel discussion, audience comment,
and other discussions of June 18th, 2005, regarding the demonstrators arrested during Philadelphia's BioDemocracy mobilization ( http://www.biodev.org, http://www.reclaimthecommons.net) in response to the Biotechnology Industry Organization convention in Philadelphia ( http://www.bio.org) from June 19-22. For more information, see also "Results of Guillaume Beaulieu's 2nd pre-trial" on the Philly IMC newswire at http://www.phillyimc.org/en/2005/07/16279.shtml
Review of elawar County Biodme Fundraiser of July 31st
From the Fourth White Rose Leaflet;
We will not be silent. We are your bad conscience.
The White Rose will not leave you in peace"
From At The Heart of the White Rose
Letters and Diaries of Hans and Sophie Scholl
(The Scholls were German Anti-Nazi Activists
and members of The White Rose.
They were captured and executed in February 1943)
Edited by Inge Jeans (Harper and Row)
We discussed the issues of protest suppression,
both historically and currently.
The Panel consisted of
Paula Bronstein, Charles Sherrouse and Bob Smith.
Charles Sherrouse, of The Pennsylvania
Abolitionists and The Philadelphia Green Party
presented the timeline of his incarceration
and his current situation.
He felt that the Police (and/or The Da's office)
ratcheted up his bail and incarceration time
far beyond any real seriousness of the
Many of those arrested were kept incommunicado
for an inordinate amount of time.
Lynn Abraham, our DA, expressed public disappointment
that she could not prefer murder charges against
any of the Protestors for the unfortunate death
of Paris Williams.
Legally, even she realized, a murder should occur
in order for murder charges to be presented.
His next court date is currently
scheduled for August 11th.
Paula Bronstein, a member of the
Biodem Legal support team,
and Co-Chair of Delaware County Greens
and a Coordinator of Delco Pledge of Resistance,
spoke of the need for funds for
The Legal Defense Fund, explaining that much of
the bail was raised from persons who gave
money that they could not really spare,
rather than seeing their friends remain in jail.
Additionally, more monies will be needed as these
cases wind their convoluted way through
the excruciating Phildelphia (in)Justice system.
Bob Smith (active in protest since
The Vietnam War era), gave his perspective.
He is the Coordinator of Brandywine Peace Community
Bob felt that the current committment to
non-violence, where it existed, was different
than that of his era, where is emerged from
a religious perspective.
Bob feels that the current activism emerges
from a deeply spiritual though not,
possibly, religious perspcetive.
He did not mean that in a negative way,
only that it came from a different
frame of reference, and that
this needed to be reflected upon.
Also, he felt that because the aims are different,
as opposed to the symbolic sense of Brandywine, etc.
the methods might also be different.
He was seeking to place protest in a
brader historical context.
Bob Small interspersed this with the reading of his
three Poems (Night of The Dancing Tomatoes
1,2, and 3) to give a sense of what the whole
experience of Biodemocracy 2005 was like
(Bob can be reached at email@example.com.
He is affiliated with Poets and Prophets,
He also compared his experience with the
same comparable experience, on the same block!,
of the 2000 GOP Convention,
where there was an eerily similiar
John Murphy, a State-Wide Nader Coordinator,
and 16th District Congressional Candidate
(contact at Johnamurphy@comcast.net)
wondered whether protestors might realize that
neither of the major parties ("the duopoly"
his term) were or would be "peace parties".
He also compared what was happening in Bolivia,
for example, where protests led to real change,
as opposed to the US, where protests lead to
incarceration and business as usual.
He wondered whether the non-violence might not
eventually wander into another area.
He also brought up the possiblility that,
since both the Left and the Right are
against the war in Iraq
(albeit for different reasons)
might we not work together on this issue.
Bob Small echoes this sentiment.
(Editorial disclaimer; We both are members of
Pennsylvania Ballot Access Coalition
www.paballotaccess.org) which is a
multi political party organization
working to revise the
restrictive Pennsylvnia Ballot Access laws
Joan Broadfield, of PYM (Philadelphia Yearly Meeting)
and Clerk of Chester Friends Meeting, discussed
her joining with Charles in previous Pa. Abolitionists
efforts and how the current climate is
intended to have a chilling effect, especially
on peaceful non-violent protest
Rich Conti and Chris Graedel
(of Brandywine Peace Community) discussed their
involvements and how it seems that dissent is
being suppressed both implicitly and
explicitly and how the mass media
(should we call CNN BNN Bush News Network)
is complicit in this either by their silence
or by only showing the death of Officer
Paris Williams to represent the
entire week of protests, as though this was the only
event that happened this week.
Further. in some cases, the Media stated his death
due to the Protestors!
(Even Democracy Now only carried the
death of Officer Williams, not any of the Protests!)
Both long-time activists are seeing this
Media perspective as a continuation of
suppressive tactics encouraged by the
Others spoke and all agreed
thatthis kind of dialogue
on the future of protest should be continued.
Financially, $160 was raised and others
stated they would be sending checks.
Checks can be sent to;
1926 Bainbridge St.
Apt 3 F
Phila., Pa., 19147
(of Biodem 2005 legal)
The Night of The Dancing Tomatoes #1
For Paula Bronstein; wife and muse.
Actually, it was a Tuesday Afternoon,
June 21st it waas
and we were protesting as
though that mattered
that did any good
and maybe there might have been some insight
if a man named Paris
who happened to be Police
hadn't had a heart attack
and left us in a moment
and left us in a moment
After he went down
running towards a skirmis
a Police created skirmish
a 52 year old man with health problems in
92 degree heat wearing as much clothes as he could
after he went down
still alive while we stood
next to a Doctor in our crowd whom
noone knew to ask for
it would not of mattered
it would not of mattered
After he went down
the Police began to bust heads
I grabbed my wife
swept her to the sidewalk
there was nothing of else to do
with this rolling blue
and the protestors not
dancing down the street
But they did not arrest the dancing tomato
2) The people with the power re main
The people with the power
can this change
without guns being involved
what are words worth
against the duoply
a President Kerry
would of found us a
kinder, gentler, war
only half as many
would be dead
and only half as many
would be dead
3) After a while
it was the night of the June 21st
time has continued to happen since then
war has not stopped happening
the stabbing of the planet has not lessened
and people have gathered inScotland
to also spend a lot of time
and not be heard
I will again join thier ranks
as I find the time the place and the cause
as I do not yet know the way of the gun
and pray not
to ever have that knowledge.
Bob Small 8-5-05 revised frin 7-6-05
The Night of The Dancing Tomatoes #2
To John A. Murphy
First of all,
there is no first of all,
except that the people who died,
were just as innocent as teh
who die daily,
and out of our memory
Thise who were injured,
for the most part,
had nothing to do with anything,
just trying to live theri lives
get a piece of time,
some little money,
a swpace to call their holy home.
They were innocents,
as the Afghans
as the Haitians
whose main misfortune
is to be living their lives
in the wrong site
at teh wrong hour
having the wrong dreams.
How dare we speak of Terrorists
while we dare not speak Guantanemo
while we allow an SOA
to continue existing.
When we were the original Terrorists
in the opinion of
The King of England
and the House of Lords
Lords of their Houses.
Can we unlearn the role of killers,
so we can teach others
or is the time past
when this might happen.
Bob Small 8-4-5
Night of the Dancing Tomatoes # 3
For Beth Frieland
it didn't cost her much
the sunglasses were not prescription
her back already pained her
much before teh cop
with his night stick
which he should not of used
he should of used his
she was justonemoreProtestorperson
whose pain was of that day and no more
whose life was like astone tothem
there and not of
..... A great import
It costs us a great deal
this price of our speech to be freee,
and she might not come the next time
because the cost she paid
stays in her memory
though the pain,
is only in a minor key.
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