Wednesday, August 19, 2009

GOP's disgusting call for incivility

Today's Providence Journal ran a front page story on the call by Rhode Island Republican leadership to come out and shout people down at tonight's planned health forum hosted by Congressman Jim Langevin. State Republican Chairman, Giovanni Cicione has instructed his fellow Republicans that they have every right to protest. He's right, and, protest is not the problem. The problem is providing instructions to his supporters with these words; "The citizenry has the right to go out and shout at the top of their lungs."

No, you need to be corrected! Citizens do not have the right to prevent others from expressing their right of free speech and this is exactly what has been happening across the country. Using such terms as "death panels" (there is no such thing) and "Nazi Health Care" (inciting language) does not advance the debate. Applying these tactics during any public forum is simply an attempt to squash the debate. Yelling over anyone that is in support of health care reform to disrupt the meeting is coming close to creating a public disturbance.

I think that it is ironic that the same people who said Officer Crowley was right to arrest the Professor in Cambridge Massachusetts, will now show up tonight and act like Professor Gates.
Acting obnoxious is your right I suppose, but that does not mean it can rise to the level of disturbing the peace.

I sincerely hope that Rhode Island Republicans can set an example of true democracy. Have your say, ask your questions, but make sure that others share the same right. Actually, the Chairman of the Rhode Island Young Republicans, Travis Rowley seems more grounded in reality than party leadership. His comments in today's paper were not a call for disturbing the peace.

Anyone that approaches disturbing the peace at tonight's forum in Warwick should be escorted from the hall and not allowed to return. I'm not saying arrest them; but everyone has a right to speak and to those that would hinder my rights, you do not belong as part of the discussion. You are not a good citizen and you don't have the first amendment right to silence my speech.


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