To: New Haven Register, Editor
From: James G. Mason
Deep River, CT, 06417
Letter to the Editor.
A truly free nation practicing democracy that has written law on parchment, essentially protecting public political speech with our lives, is in jeopardy of no longer existing.
Occupy Movement participants: You may not realize it, but through all of those newspaper and television images you are broadcasting hope to millions of your fellow citizens who also want a country that prioritizes the economic health of the 99% above the 1%. We watch and we think "maybe, finally, at last, they're doing something about Wall Street's control over our lives." These unseen supportive millions don't have the courage or the time in their lives to do their visible part for the Occupy Movement. But they will your victory from their couches and they wait for each new large demonstration, each showdown with the police, each launching of tear gas at Americans who are being very American. It is these events, we all know, that Americans will remember as precluding change.
When I see the New Haven Green used by young people in the Occupy Movement, I see angry colonists trying to peacefully "petition their government a redress of grievances," as was visualized and written in 1787 in our constitution's priority of the First Amendment. I see state and local governments acting like corrupt institutions by being bad Americans and anti-constitutionalists by chasing citizens off the public square when little harm is being done to anyone and political speech is in process.
When I see the police in their riot gear line-up in gauntlet fashion across from Occupiers, I am seeing betrayers of the Constitution to the United States of America. I see people in uniform acting exactly as Madison and Jefferson must have hoped they never would, with weapons pointed at the masses, at us, at citizens, while they conduct their First Amendment busting operations under the policy of their employers, under oath of employment, threat of firing if they don't comply. Working within law enforcement department policy alongside your peers to destroy a public gathering of peaceful political protestors on a public square is tantamount to treason and not worth an evening of tear gas launching and head cracking of unemployed young men and women to violate the very tenant of your country. If you are law enforcement and you have taken part in dispatching the Occupy Movement participants, then perhaps the United States is no longer your country, after having been violent with otherwise peaceful political protestors? After all you have violated it's first premise designed to protect a free society. New Haven police officers: unfortunately once a traitor to a nation you can't reverse that, and additionally it's a guilty feeling you'll have the rest of your life.