A Democracy Barometer, or Exercise of Criminal Lunacy?

Democracy Overview

Millions of tourists from around the world have visited Washington, DC, seen the vigil, with signs decrying the insanity of nuclear weapons, and returned to their homelands, impressed that such public expression is allowed at the executive mansion.

Lafayette Park has been an open forum for demonstrators for many decades. During the duration of the antinuclear vigil,(since 1981), four regulations have been written which threaten individual rights. From the vigilers perspective, this "chilling" of First Amendment Rights is the very situation that our country's fathers wanted to avoid. Pure Constitutionalists, such as Madison, and Jefferson would be appalled at the regulations which are codifed at 36 CFR, and would probably say, "These are ex-post-facto "laws" and, therefore, null and void; not "laws" at all." However, we still continue to abide by these "laws" as best we can, while being painted into a smaller corner by new regulations at the whim of the Park Service.

From the vigilers perspective, their "constitutionally protected expression" has been transformed into "criminal activity," those who see the vigil as a tribute to democracy are deluded. From the vigil's point of view their Legal Cases prove that it is only their own perseverance, rather than government protection, which accounts for their continued presence.

Some U.S. citizens think the vigilers are lunatics, and berate them for failing to appreciate that "nuclear weapons are what protect the freedom and democracy that allows you to do this." In the broader perspective, however, highly experienced military experts have lately branded nuclear weapons "irrational." Perhaps "sanity" is relative, perhaps the U.S. is suffering mass delusion, or maybe the vigilers are just crazy.

From an earthling's perspective the sun may seem to "rise" in the East and "set" in the West. From a broader perspective, however, it appears that the earth revolves around the sun. At least 2500 years ago some advanced western thinkers had already apprehended the broader perspective. Yet, under laws prevailing in Europe only 500 years ago Giordano Bruno was burnt at the stake simply for thinking that the commonly held perception of a geocentric universe was nothing more than mass delusion, and expressing his thoughts to the general public.

Freedom of thought and expression are of nominal value without Freedom of Assembly. Having witnessed the development and expansion of Secret Service Park Closures, the vigilers have been concerned as Lafayette Park began to appear more like Red Square. As they watched the "legal principles" developed against them used against others they have come to perceive their experience as a yardstick for democracy.