Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Mullin's 'Security' Concerns: Red Cards

  Last week, several Oklahoma town halls were held. But a Tahlequah event was cancelled just moments prior to Congressman Mullin's arrival.
  Mullin issued some cryptic language in his press statements about event security, in an attempt to explain his justification for leaving the 2nd District constituents 'stood up' at the Sequoyah High School Auditorium.
  Many Oklahoma voters assumed that the event venue did not properly 'sweep' the building, or that people with dangerous weapons were allowed in the building.
  Some local journalists pressed the issue and finally discovered that the problem was about big protest signs on sticks and standards, or other potentially make-shift weapons.
  The Federal Marshall's Service provided event security for the town hall meeting in the historic Indian School. their duty is to the public safety, not the congressman's political image. as such, these federal law enforcement officers decided they had a duty to protect First Amendment expressions which do not pose a public safety concern.  They saw the small red or green cards as nothing to be concerned with.

  But to a beleaguered politician who is obsessed with image and likability, the red cards are an assault on his elect-ability. 
​  Tahlequah Daily Press reported on their Facebook page, and the Cherokee Nation confirmed, that the sticking point for Mullin was that the venue wouldn’t ban the red and green sheets of paper that people hold up at town halls to represent their positions. The Cherokee Nation disputes Mullin’s claim that there were security concerns, however.
“The Cherokee Nation Marshals Service provided adequate security to Congressman Mullin’s town hall,” Cherokee Nation spokeswoman told Raw Story over the phone. “Our marshals coordinated in advance with Congressman Mullin’s office and security detail.”  The spokeswoman couldn’t comment on how green and red paper became a safety concern.
In a Pryor area meeting, Mullin directs the cops to remove a detractor. When he sees that it will create a political embarrassment for him, he then orders the cops to stand down. This is a clear abuse of police powers for suppression of political dissidents.
   SoonerPolitics commends the work of peace officers and other security officials who respect constitutional limits on their powers. Using law enforcement as political thugs is a very bad thing, and the Cherokee Nation worked with Federal agents in a manner which promoted safe and constructive petitioning and redress rights, as well as advocacy for political reforms.
​  Mullin shows a dangerous propensity to abuse police powers for political manipulation. It is precisely this type of small episode which can reveal for us a very serious concern which we rarely get opportunity to observe. Namely;
"What would a seemingly decent man do if we vested him with great power?".
 Is it tacky to keep your little piece of paper held in the air? Yeah, it is. But it's not shouting or physically intimidating... Well, except maybe to a politician who has a hard time dealing with healthy dissent.
  We commend Jim Bridenstine for maintaining a jovial good will at his massive Tulsa event. He relished and celebrated the healthy convergence of political philosophy when 400 liberals got loud at his 2000-participant event.

from Sooner - Editorial

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