Rainbow/Legaliaison Update 1/30/93

c/o P.O. Box 27217
Washington, D.C. 20038
(202) 265-5389


January 30, 1993

To All Our Relations
Within the legal jurisdiction of the United States
Planet Earth
Brothers and Sisters of the Belly Button,

THE GOOD NEWS: On January 22, 1993 Leon E. Panetta, director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), ordered that most "regulations not yet published in the Federal Register," be returned for approval of "a person appointed by President Clinton and confirmed by the Senate."

The bad news: those Bush administration regulations -- including a National Forest Service proposal to regulate public gatherings, long guaranteed under the First Amendment, on land which has universally been recognized as "public" since the beginning of this nation -- are now under consideration by the Clinton administration.

As of January 28th the government was still acting like this regulation is Top Secret. We've been unable to even determine the official designation of the regulation. It should be referred to as: THE PROPOSED NATIONAL FOREST SERVICE RULEMAKING TO RESTRICT PEACEABLE ASSEMBLIES ON PUBLIC LANDS. They will know what you're talking about. They also haven't been willing to tell us exactly what the regulation says. Our concerns are ANY requirements for PERMITS, INSURANCE or PERFORMANCE BONDS.

It is strongly suggested that NOW IS THE TIME for a flood of public comment. If it comes now the comment can be directed toward the new presidential administration.


ONE: Familiarize yourself with the enclosed materials and generate telephone calls. Lots and lots of them. Organize phone trees. Call your friends, explain the basics to them. Tell them to make calls. Tell them to tell their friends to make calls, and to call their friends to have them make calls to the numbers below. It is our hope that the sisters and brothers laboring in government don't understand what they are doing. Educate yourself, educate the administration; ASK (polite) QUESTIONS.


TWO: ALSO write letters to the folks listed below. Tell your friends to write letters. Tell them to tell their friends to write letters (To insure that your voice is heard also send a copy of your letter to Legaliaison at the above address). YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO DEMAND A PUBLIC HEARING. Note, At this time Legaliaison considers a Congressional hearing premature and inappropriate, we specifically suggest an administrative hearing.

White House
Carol Rasco
Domestic Policy Advisor
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20500

Secretary of Agriculture
ATT: Ron Blackley
14th & Independence SW 200-A
Washington, D.C. 20250

We suggest writing & and calling each of the above. Phone calls are important. Letters make a more lasting impression. If the technology is available, faxes also seem like a great idea. The more public opposition to RESTRICTING PEACEABLE ASSEMBLIES ON PUBLIC LANDS these good folks receive, the more seriously they will consider whether this is what they really want to do.

Theoretically, we will still have the opportunity to comment on whatever regulation the government might finally publish in the Federal Register. The point now is to convince the new administration not to publish anything in the Federal Register, because, practically speaking, if the new administration goes along with the old administration and publishes this rulemaking in the Federal Register, that will mean -- almost certainly -- the only recourse left is to defend the RIGHT OF PEACEABLE ASSEMBLY ON PUBLIC LANDS in court.

Some folks might have more confidence in the judicial system than others, and we hope the optimists are correct. Consider, however, that if forced to a legal defense against the elimination of free assembly under totalitarian regulations, the defenders will be opposing not only the new administration, which will be promulgating the regulation, but also the old administration, which initiated the regulation in the first place, while arguing before courts that hold uncompassionate opinions (see, e.g., Herrara v. Collins, decided by the Supreme Court, January 25, 1993). Tough odds.

Thus, we conclude, it is imperative to ACT NOW!!!

In service to the Spirit of Understanding

D.C. Scribe

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