Always a pleasure to meet someone interested in learning "what our
rights" are. There are folks who like to charactorize me as one of
those "legal types," but truly my interests are truth, justice, freedom
Consequently, for quite awhile now, been trying to get some of the love
and light types to take the issue of the heavy handed police state
seriously. For example, on November 13, 1993, Waco: The Policy was
widely disseminated though light and love networks, hoping to arouse
It is encouraging to see folks are beginning to discuss this issue with
more concern. Thanks for thinking.
In my opinion, an important thing to know about rights is, you can't
count on the courts to protect them.
WACO: THE POLICY
The Forest Service is proposing regulations that would change freedom
of assembly and expression into a crime, punishable by fine and/or
For twenty-one years the Rainbow Family of Living Light has gathered,
in numbers from 14,000 to 30,000, in a Ntional Forest for the expressed
purpose of "praying for peace on earth and the healing of the planet."
Every year the Forest Service does a report on the Gathering. Every
report relates that the Gathering caused no problems, and that the land
was left as good, if not better, than it was in the beginning. The
proposed regulations would render this harmless religious observence a
Some folks think the problem is just a few wild bureaucrats who've run
amok. Others think the problem is that government thrives on power,
power corrupts, the more power government obtains, the more it wants,
and that this regulation is the "logical" extension of the government's
continuing drive for power. What hasn't the government already
regulated? What valid interest can the government possibly have to
regulate freedom of thought and assembly?
If government is the problem, then the only solution might be to change
What about the Koresh massacre? For fifty one days the FBI arrested
any media person who came within two miles. Each morning Special FBI
Agent Bob Ricks held a press conference to assure the world that David
Koresh was irrational. The FBI blasted the Koresh people with amazing
stereo equipment and flooded them with blazing lights. Then, fearing
the bright lights and loud music might cause psychological damage to
"the children," the FBI rammed main battle tanks into the Koresh
compound "poking holes" and spraying "non-flammable" teargas inside.
"The next logical step." Agent Ricks said.
Coincidently -- Agent Ricks, Attorney General Reno, and President
Clinton tell us -- the Koresh people chose that moment to commit
suicide by setting their house on fire.
Imagine, the "Rainbow Gathering" becomes a "crime," but, the People
gather anyway. Given an outlaw Gathering, what's poor Uncle Sam
supposed to do? Most economical solution might be to just surround the
Gathering with a chainlink fence. These CFR regulations, called
"citation offenses," provide that when an agent accuses a person of a
violation, the accused may post a $50 bond. Anybody who wanted to get
past the Rainbow fence could just put up 50 bucks and make it back to
To facilitate "due process" the Feds could just bring a gigantic T.V.
screen down to the Main Circle, set up two-way video and audio
equipment, and offer to hold court -- like those closed circuit courts
they've already got going in Florida and some other places.
Anybody who wanted could go to the video court and plead the First
Amendment, or try to cut a deal with the magistrate for an intermediate
sentence, trade time served for community service, or something. On
the other extreme, anybody who wanted to hang out for six months could
just hang tight, The federales could send in supplies. After six
months, sooner if they want, they could take down the fence and
everybody could go their way. Of course, at smaller gatherings, a
hundred or so folks, the feds might think it was more economical just
to round everybody up and farm them out to surrounding county jails.
After Waco, one of the first things U.S. Attorney Reno suggested was
looking at new laws and regulations to control "cults."
Waco was a "proactive" enforcement approach. So is this rule. Thought
needs to be focused on a broad unified opposition to proactive
If government is the problem, perhaps the only solution is to change