Last week, the principal of Monadnock Regional Middle/High School sent a letter to certain parents promoting Free Keene, and for that I thank them. However, the letter also told a big lie. The letter’s purpose was to stir up concern among parents that some people from Free Keene have been recording on campus, (here’s the video) and further claims falsely:
This is a violation of your child’s privacy and because it happened on school property, we want to make sure you are aware of this video.
This is a lie. It was not Derrick’s intention to record the students, and the principal’s letter does admit the students were filmed inadvertently. That said, even if it had been his intention to record the students, it would not have been a violation of their privacy, given they were all outdoors, on ostensibly public property. Beyond that, the school district has already informed parents their kids will be recorded, not just for their school security system, but for newspaper, radio, TV and web! Here’s the proof. According to the “student registration” form for the Monadnock Regional School District, which covers Monadnock Regional Middle/High School, parents agree to the following statement, in a lengthy four-page form (check the bottom of page 3 for this):
I agree to allow the student to be recorded or photographed for public use by newspaper, radio, TV and web
So, this is nothing more than a dishonest, fearmongering hit piece that is designed to make the school look like they are somehow protecting the students from us horrible bloggers by claiming they are consulting with law enforcement and have formulated plans to remove us from the premises next time. All the while, they are recording the students on their own security system on a daily basis, and have had all parents sign a waiver allowing any media to use their images!
Robin Hood gets thrifty, for the people • Sign ordinance 101. Like getting punched in the d**k • Derrick J “unsuitable” to conceal carry • James goes on trial for recording the police • Messages from the folks • Rapsher, Shaunna, and James join • Show notes at: BlackSheepRising.org
The most objectionable part is that the Sentinel’s editors continue to attribute some kind of ridiculous hive-mind to the bloggers at Free Keene:
To its credit, the group has received the segment with a sense of humor and, presumably, the outlook that there’s no such thing as bad publicity.
The Sentinel’s editors do not know what each blogger at Free Keene thinks of the Colbert Report. I don’t even know. Neither I nor the Sentinel have polled this site’s dozen-plus bloggers to find out their thoughts. So, the statement the Sentinel’s anonymous editors make is inaccurate. An accurate statement would be to name specifically who at this website has received it with a sense of humor. I happen to be one of those who enjoyed the Colbert Report (nor was I surprised by it – we expected to be skewered), but my view is not necessarily shared among all the bloggers. Unlike the Sentinel, every post at Free Keene is attributed publicly to its author, so there’s no confusion.
The Sentinel’s anonymous editors may not appreciate the “absurdity” of the Robin Hooders‘ efforts to save people from parking tickets, but multiple employees of the paper have thanked the activists for saving them – so obviously the anonymous editors do not speak for 100% of the Sentinel staff.
When informed multiple times that his honking had disturbed children from their slumber, Boston was unapologetic. In fact, he further promises to, “make their lives a living nightmare.”
Despite seeming to have some grievance against what he calls the “shithole” on the corner, the Shire Free Church-owned LRN.FM studio and Keene Activist Center, Boston seems to think that all the neighbors who aren’t liberty activists really appreciate his loud honking and screaming. At one point he even claims, “Everybody loves what I’m doing. They love it.”
This delusion is typical of the local hater – because the people who they are close to appear to agree with them, they believe that “everybody” agrees with them. The reality is that people have different opinions. Some people in Keene dislike some things activists do, but like others. Some people like some activists but dislike others. Some love what we do. Some hate what we do. Anyone who’s not in an echo chamber of hate would understand that. Of course if any of his friends or acquaintances actually disagree with him, they probably keep their mouths shut for fear of his wrath.
I look forward to participating in what will be the second annual Keenevention this weekend. The forum taking place at the Best Western Plus Sovereign Hotel on Winchester Street will feature panels and speeches by New Hampshire’s activist community. In addition to a panel focusing on Direct Action that I will be hosting on Sunday, I was also asked to speak on Saturday’s media panel by organizer Mark Edge. When I agreed, I was not informed who else would be on the panel, though I expected that organizers would only select participants of honorable reputation when showcasing the most effective activists that New Hampshire offers.
While there is certainly a need for diversity of perspective within the activist community, there are standards that a reasonable person would expect individuals would hold each other to if we wish to make any sort of collective impact. As a peace activist, anyone who directly advocated or applauds the use of violence can be objectively classified as having beliefs counter to my own. For myself, I am wasting my most valuable asset, my time, if I support those working against my interests, those who are promoting ideas that are the opposite of my own.
It was once consensus within the libertarian and anarchist community of greater Keene that embracing peace was equally imperative to embracing ideas of social liberty. For whatever reason over the past year or so, that sentiment has changed as some formerly positive spirits have darkened amidst of heightened wave of reactionary opposition. (more…)
The headlines are all over New England media: Keene Police have released photos of suspects from the Pumpkin Fest 2014 riots. Inevitably, critics of liberty activists in Keene, and those who are confused and angry about Cop Block will tend to think liberty-oriented people are anti-police, because we so frequently criticize them for various things. It’s a common misunderstanding.
Many in the freedom movement, including myself, value the idea of protection services, which is what the police are supposed to be. While I’d prefer competition among protection agencies and consent-based funding of the agencies, while we have a monopoly provider, as we do today, I’d prefer they investigate real crimes, and I support them when they do.
Once upon a time the government’s police were referred to as peace officers, but now they are “law enforcement officers”, which is a whole different role and mindset.
During the Pumpkin Fest riots, peace officers would have acted to stop the violence (bottle throwing, fighting), property destruction (destroying street signs, tossing cars and dumpsters), and trespass (people going unwanted, onto private property). Law Enforcement Officers, on the other hand, arrest people for all kinds of nonsense things like open container, underage drinking, cannabis possession, and various other “malum prohibitum” victimless “crimes”. Every moment they spend harassing a young person for drinking or smoking is a moment they can’t be investigating actual crimes that have victims.