I am a supporter of the constitutional right of all citizens to redress their grievances by virtue of the guarantees for freedom of assembly. However, those rights don't trump the right of other citizens to have free access to their workplace and to not be harassed in their goings and comings. To not have commerce interrupted by demonstrations. Persons have a right to expect to have a clean and threat free area surrounding their business or home. Allowing this type of activity to go on unabated for days and weeks is bowing to threats. It encourages even more blatant and continued disregard for the rights of others.
A demonstration permit should not be granted to allow a tent city in a public park. Historically, the 1932 Bonus March on Washington, D.C. was a similar event. Disgruntled and out of work World War I veterns, and in some cases their families, set up a tent city on the Mall and petitioned the government to give them their promised bonus for their service. After a period of time the military was sent in to clear the Mall.
What the occupy movement is doing is pure and simply a violation of decorum and good judgment, perhaps vagrancy, and a disgrace.
If I were to assemble a mob in support of some cause and then occupy an area in any city that had the same impact on my fellow citizens I would not expect it to be tolerated.
Why camp out? Why occupy? A group can demonstrate daily in good order and very effectively. This form of demonstration, occupation, is intended to provoke confrontation. Their organizers want us to believe that it is spontaneous and just a happening when it is in reality a well choreographed event. It is intended to trigger a violent reaction, and the longer that it goes on the greater the probability for violence erupting on both sides.
It should not be tolerated and it should be stopped by those in authority.
William Engle, Howard CountyCopyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun