Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Does my First Amendment Scare You?

No doubt when great writers, George Orwell and Aldous Huxley, were writing their inspirational masterpieces regarding our future, they missed this generation’s coming. With all fairness, Mr. Huxley still has 526 years to make prophecy out of his Brave New World. However, perhaps their work serves more of a warning than our English teacher professed to know, or care.

Though, 1984 had some interesting events to write home about, we didn’t see exactly what Mr. Orwell was trying to show us. Of course, we may have been too distracted by our war with Syria and Lebanon. But I digress.

One of the things that came about during 1984 included the expansion of the personal computer with the first graphical user interface. Although, similar means of distractions, like the television, were already in existence, the personal computer was the doorway into getting into peoples’ minds; and thus advanced the capabilities of brainwashing programs. We don’t call them by that, though, we call it good marketing. So let’s give Mr. Orwell credit where credit is due-he really nailed it.

Our demise was not served as promised in 1984, but perhaps somehow the date still marks significant leads into the escalated version we see today. With the scale tipped in favor of our oppressors, we see a government label on everything; a grab for personal weapons; eyes in our business; hands in our health records (despite a proven track for incompetence time and time again); and our rights slowly being stripped away. The result has led the majority to comply in hopes of avoiding conflicts with the state—which in and of itself is rather a humorous concept that indicates, when the state feels violated (even if the violation is none at all), it may violate you back. Here’s the thing, the state gets a ton of representatives to literally and figuratively kick your ass (as my dear friend learned the hard way). But again, stay focused.

Here’s an example: you receive a ticket for not wearing your seat belt (well, hellloooo officer). Now,you didn’t harm anyone by not wearing your seat belt. But according to the ticket, you harmed the state. Literally, the state feels violated by your decision, and the only way to make the state feel better is with some of your hard earned dollars.

So why comply? Because it’s easier. You don’t have to miss work to go to court; they have an online feature so you can pay with your credit card; and let’s be honest, you knew the “law” and you broke it, so might as well, bend over and grab your ankles, right?

So what happens when you follow all the rules, you comply with the demands, and the desired result is still not achieved? When the code generators and their enforcers decide that the liberties are no longer extended to you, even though you did everything right, you are faced with a decision. You have to decide if you will sit down, shut up, and take whatever they give you; or, if you will remain vigilant and say “no, I’m not complying with this.”

As you may be aware (that is, if you listened to the phone conversation between staff of the Dekalb County Courthouse in Georgia – it’s provided below if you missed it), I was recently faced with this decision when I was denied my first amendment in Dekalb. Despite following the rules and submitting a request to exercise this liberty, members of the Dekalb county courthouse staff ignored my request. When I called to find out what was taking so long, i was first told,  such a request was never received.  After that it was made clear that no one knew what their job was and they never had to perform it before. The end result was that the request was flat out denied.

Well, I complied. I did not record the case. In fact, I didn’t even go. Actually, I got caught at home nursing the sick baby, but that’s trivial. With plenty of time to reflect on what had occurred, it came to this… We (as citizens) are told if we are not doing anything wrong, we have nothing to hide—to which many citizens abide by and even coerce others to comply with in an effort to dispel security threats and aid in creating a puppies and kittens utopia. These are the people Mr. Orwell and Mr. Huxley were warning us about.

Fortunately, we heeded their warnings; and, just as we knew big brother would be used against us, we have learned to use it for us. Just as we have been convinced to comply with rules that depreciate our privacy, on account of security; our constitution holds that our public servants are always under the scrutiny of the people. We are private citizens until we enter the courtroom; why is it that the proceedings within are forbidden from the eyes of outsiders, unless provided by the court’s reporter? While every citizen should be upset with this notion, we’re far from done.

Though I gave my best effort in getting the news out there that this courthouse doesn’t believe in the first amendment and did not wish recording to take place; someone did not get the message. Unfortunately for him, the judge was not pleased, and the proverbially hammer began its descent as the fearful court gave an immediate response of charges, detainment, and confiscation of the gentleman’s property.

I am at a loss to understand why these folks are so terrified of the first amendment. If they’re not doing anything wrong in the public courtroom, they should have nothing hide. Of course, based on our research, it’s more likely they are afraid of being caught not knowing what their job is.

The good news is,  some footage did come out of the courtroom before the broadcast was cut off. Here's one of the highlights. 

It's our understanding that felony charges were threatened for further filming, but that didn't stop Divine America from getting an exclusive; and if you think the fun stops there, it actually gets better.

Although, I couldn’t make the date in person, I’m happy to say that my imposter had no conflict in schedule. If you’re confused, imagine how the innocent women sitting beside my dear friend felt when the judge accused her of being me. While I am completely flattered by the judge’s assumption that I could be credited with coordinating some effort to disrupt his court; I am more blown away by the judge’s acknowledgment of receiving my request, and his desire to point an identifying finger at some unsuspecting woman in order to hold someone accountable. I hope she let the judge know that, too.

Especially in this case, where I have painted the actions as relevant to the mark of the beast; I’m going to charter us into new waters and ask: what is the power of the court?

Last time I addressed you from a biblical sense. This time, I’m taking a different approach and teaching you a little something about me. As many of you know, I’m a witch. I do not hide this fact, and I hope it doesn’t scare or offend any of you (cause it doesn’t change). With that out of the way, let’s get back on track.

When in fear, the mighty will point an accusing finger—one we’ve seen throughout history that has led to the torture, imprisonment, burning, hanging, drowning, and beheading of many—simply for being different in the eyes of their beholder.

Now, one of the many symbols recognized by most withes is the power of the pointed finger—a tool capable of transference of energy and power unto an object or person of choosing. The natural tool-the finger- may be replaced or represented by a variety of other objects such as the wand, or athame (that’s like a small knife for those of you who are unfamiliar). In court, the judge’s gavel is that very tool—transferring judgment upon its victim. So when the judge makes a judgment and points the conceptual finger at someone—accusing them of an identity—it becomes clearly evident the extent to which these courts will go in order to hold someone accountable for holding them accountable. Whew, that was a mouthful.

So, you still comfortable with being accused of being the non-compliant witch in that courtroom? Ha! Me neither!
More and more our rights—especially our first amendment—are being distorted and violated by authorities who feel it should be contained in “First Amendment Zones.” In some cases, rights are completely prohibited. If not for people like Mr. Santelli, these zones would be all we knew. Then it would be only a matter of time before we are required to sign waivers to participate in even the so-called free-speech zones. I suppose, as long as you don’t exercise you first amendment beyond those boundaries, you’ll stay out of jail, or in this case prison. Or you could stop doing nothing, and play by their rules by sending in your own request to record at the next court date (which is tentatively scheduled for October 10). If that’s not your cup of tea, simply being present is enough to show your support of our rights. It’s when we amass in support of one that we decide to stand against wrongful abuse of all. When we stop the courts from violating the constitution, we stop them from violating citizens and communities. 

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