Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is urging his City Council to enact strict new restrictions on many forms of protest on Wednesday, January 18. Local advocates say the Council is distracted by a fierce redistricting battle and that the new ordinance is likely to pass unnoticed, unless there’s a huge outcry.
According to the Chicago Tribune and the Wall Street Journal, the proposed ordinance imposes impossible-to-meet requirements, confusing restrictions and sky-high fines on protest organizers and participants, including:
A 2-hour time limit on all protests;
An increase in minimum fines from $50 to $1000 for violations of “parade regulations”;
A curfew in public spaces; and
A requirement to pre-register “attention-getting devices”, including signs and megaphones, at least 1 week before the event.
Pre-registering signs? Protest time-limits? Sounds like an Anti-Occupy bill to us.
Putting limits on protesting at a time like this only exemplifies the reason why Occupy Chicago exists in the first place!
Either allow them to protest and exercise their first amendment rights 24 hours a day, or assist them in establishing a better form of government and resolve their grievances!
Nonviolence is the answer to the crucial political and moral questions of our time; the need for mankind to overcome oppression and violence without resorting to oppression and violence. Mankind must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression, and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.