Oklahoma Wildlife Commission Was Disingenuous with SE Oklahoma

March 8, 2012

The following was published in my hometown newspaper, The Hugo Daily News, on 07 March 2012.

These are my comments concerning a “recent” decision by the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation commission that I felt was very deceptive, to say the least.

 

     Yesterdays Hugo Daily News front page announcement, and the accompanying editorial, did a very good job describing the “recent” ODWC commission’s decision and “vote” to issue further mandates restricting 4-wheeler activity in the Honobia WMA. 

     Yes, the issue included many variables to be considered…not least of which is that much of Honobia WMA is private property managed by ODWC and private property rights, in my opinion, are to be protected at all costs.  With that being said, that doesn’t mean that the state has license to lie and deceive…which is what occurred in this instance.

    At a meeting for “Public Comment” in Antlers, relative to the Honobia WMA matter, well over 100 concerned citizens were told: “The restrictions are not set in concrete” yet a few minutes later it was revealed that an agreement had ALREADY BEEN SIGNED.  Hmmmm…here we are at a meeting, supposedly designed to gain public input, offering input on a contract which was already a done deal.  We were then told, by ODWC officials (the state), to get with our elected officials at the state level…that this would be “beneficial”.  Both Rep. Pruett and Sen. Ellis happened to be in attendance and it was finally agreed, with their input and with a vast majority of other atteendee consensus, that a two-year moratorium would be offered so that alternatives could be pursued.  The overwhelming majority of concerned citizens left that meeting feeling pretty good about the outcome.

     I can guarantee many of those good folks are asking themselves today: “Did I miss something? Did I not hear something correctly?”. The answer is: Nope, your memory is fine!  You were just deceived.  The “recent” decision was not recent at all.  The ODWC made their decision long ago when they inked the official state signature to the contract on your behalf.  The “vote” was mere political showmanship. 

     Our input didn’t matter…especially after-the-fact!  Are instances like this rare, you may ask?  Not at all!   Freedoms and natural rights and the voice of the public are being stolen everday by that one thing that is by its very nature “force”.

“Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force…” — George Washington

Respectfully;

Howard Houchen

 

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ACTION ALERT from OK-SAFE INC. — NO to Obamacare in Oklahoma

February 27, 2012

 

Joint Press Release –
Monday, February 27, 2012 

  Grassroots Groups Reject Final Report Establishing Exchanges

 Subject: Final Report of the Joint Committee on Federal Health Care Law and Resulting Legislation

 The Patient Protection and Affordable Care (PPACA) passed on March 23, 2010, and is generally known as “ObamaCare”.

 Oklahomans overwhelmingly objected to the implementation of “ObamaCare” in its’ entirety, including the development of exchanges.

 The citizens of Oklahoma believed the lawsuit filed by A.G. Scott Pruitt against “ObamaCare” was a real reflection of the intent of Oklahoma’s leadership and that Oklahoma would not adopt this governmental overreach. The majority of the recently elected Republican officials campaigned on a platform against “ObamaCare.”

 Yet, on Wednesday, February 22, 2012 the Joint Legislative Committee on Federal Health Care Law issued its’ Final Report, recommending the establishment of a state-based insurance exchange and the creation of a public-beneficiary trust as administrator.

 Both of these recommendations continue to align the state of Oklahoma with the provisions of “ObamaCare” and are contrary to campaign promises, and recent public statements.  

 Mentioned 278 times in the PPACA law, the exchanges are the defining component in planning and implementing the law-without the exchanges there is no “ObamaCare”.

 Committee chair Rep. Glenn Mulready himself has admitted that, “There is no doubt that a state-based exchange falls under the umbrella of federal law.”

 The Cato Institute and the Heartland Institute, in addition to numerous grassroots organizations, have told this legislature that the strongest position for a state to take, if they really oppose “ObamaCare,” is to not establish a state-based exchange, or yet another trust.

 The grassroots organizations of Oklahoma reject the Final Report and the establishment of either a state-based exchange or another trust. Trusts, unknown to most Oklahomans, can solicit and receive federal grants, and operate without legislative oversight. The trust mechanism is providing political cover for those who wish to look like they’re opposing ObamaCare while actually establishing the means still implement it.

 SB 1629 by Senator Brian Bingman is to be heard on Monday, Feb. 27, 2012. This bill establishes a Health Insurance Private Marketplace Network Trust.

 We oppose the proposed committee substitute language for SB 1629, which appears to be re-work of last year’s controversial HB 2130 “HUB” bill, which passed the House but was not heard in the Senate.  

 SB 1629 follows the costly path of inserting a middleman into the traditional business model, which will ultimately cost us more in the long run. See The Model is the Message diagram here

 Jointly Issued by:OK-SAFE, Inc., Tulsa912 Project, ROPE, and other grassroots groups.

Contact: Amanda Teegarden, Executive Director, OK-SAFE,  918-633-2020; or Ronda Vuillemont-Smith, Pres., Tulsa912 Project 918-853-7986

 OK-SAFE, Inc. is a 501(c4) non-profit Oklahoma Corporation. Contributions are not tax deductable.

   

 
Sincerely,

AxXiom for Liberty Live_2-24-12

February 24, 2012

     AxXiom for Liberty Live, Kaye and I welcome a full line-up of guests this afternoon to help us in making sense of the insensible!  First up is Lukus Collins, Director of Operations for Ron Paul OK, to tell about tomorrows visit to Oklahoma City by the Congressman from Texas…Dr. Ron Paul!  Visit www.ronpaulok.com for more information about Ron Paul OK.

Next we will welcome Darren Gantz, Republican candidate for Oklahoma State House of Representatives for District 68.  Darren will tell us what motivated him to seek this seat and take on a Republican incumbent.  Visit www.darrengantz.com for info about Darren and his campaign.

Kaye and I then bring on the founder and executive director of Oklahomans for Liberty, David Tackett.  David has been been fighting for Constitutional Conservative values in the Oklahoma Legislature by tacling issues such as open-carry, Obamacare, and corporate welfare….just to name a few and we’re going to talk about some these issues tonight.  Visit www.libertyok.com for more information on Oklahomans for Liberty.

Our final guest tonight on AxXiom for Liberty is Theodore King.  Theodore is the author of the book: “The War on Smokers and the Rise of the Nanny State”  http://www.amazon.com/War-Smokers-Rise-Nanny-State/dp/1440123047He is also a writer for an Oklahoma paper, the Pryor Daily Times , while doing his part to restore journalistic integrity — http://dailycaller.com/2011/10/26/why-i-love-herman-cains-new-smoking-ad/.  We will talk with Theodore about legislation that further promotes the rise of the “Nanny State” with specific detail paid to the war on smokers.

Tune in LIVE, tonight 2-24-12, from 6:00 to 8:00pm CST on 102.3FM in OKC or ListenLive on the web at www.logosradionetwork.com OR you can listen on your phone by dialing: 512-485-9010 .  The question and comment line during the show is: 512-646-1984.  See Ya There!

The Team Chaplain Must Be Fingerprinted — HB3076

February 14, 2012

WOW!  My apologies to all but I let a DOOZIE slip by!  There are “bad bills”, “really bad bills”, “well intended bills with bad or misguided language”, and then there are ‘DOOZIE’S”.  These are the ones that sound very benign, benevolent even, yet the unforeseen (unspoken) consequences can be devastating.  HB3076 is a DOOZIE!

HB3076, authored  by Rep. Joe Dorman, passed the Oklahoma Appropriations Subcommittee on Public Safety on 12 Feb., 2012 on a unanimous 9 – 0 vote.  HB3076 begins with:  

An Act relating to schools; amending 70 O.S. 2011, Section 5-142, which relates to criminal history record checks; defining term; requiring board of education to request national criminal history check for any prospective volunteer; requiring school district to pay search fee; prohibiting future checks after prospective volunteer passes a check unless break in service occurs; and providing an effective date.” 

Not too bad on the surface until you read, and then REALLY think about, the language.  HB3076 is an amendatory bill that adds “Prospective Volunteer” to the list of individuals that a school board SHALL (meaning: MUST) request, from the Oklahoma State Board of Education (utilizing the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation — OSBI) a “National Criminal History Check”.  According to HB3076 a  “Prospective volunteer includes a parent, guardian, or any individual who intends to volunteer in a capacity that gives him or her direct contact with students.”

Any of you folks ever ‘”volunteered” for a school event where you had “direct contact with students”?  I’d be willing to bet most of you have.  As a matter of fact, I know of many school districts where family, friend, and community “volunteers” make up the bulk of support for school events and the “volunteers” have “direct contact with students” at some point during the school event. 

Okay…get ready to be fingerprinted.  Why?  Because that is one very important feature of a “National Criminal History Check”.  To “volunteer” you get to allow OSBI to come and fingerprint you and collect other personal information…YEEEHAAAWWWW, you’re on your way to being a “volunteer”!!!!  Oh…did I mention that there is money involved as well?  Yes!  The school district or “a support organization associated with the school district gets to pay for the “National Criminal History Check” not to exceed US$50.00!!!  (OMG! I can hardly wait…I’m amost a “volunteer”!)

In my little ole hometown of Hugo, Oklahoma U.S. of A., I’d willing to estimate that some 250 (very conservative estimate) would fall into the legal definition of “volunteer” under HB3076.  Now, I’m not saying that 250 good folks would go through this INSANE proposal…but lets say 100 of us diehard “volunteer” (in little ole Hugo) decided that our “volunteerness” was worth anything for our kids and our town.  That is just a mere US$5,000.00 (as long as we don’t take a year off from “volunteering”). 

The HHS Football Buffaloes Team Chaplain would get to be fingerprinted!  All those great gals that help with the cheerleaders will get to be fingerprinted!  The “volunteer” folks that work the concession stands get to be fingerprinted!  Those parents that “volunteer” to ride on those real comfortable big-yellow school buses get to be fingerprinted!  The Mom’s, Dad’s, Aunt’s, and Grandparent’s that “volunteer” their time and resources to upgrade and/or clean facilities…YEP, they get to be fingerprinted!

Here’s a link to HB3076 — just click around and look at who voted FOR it in committee and then call you Oklahoma State Representative: http://www.oklegislature.gov/BillInfo.aspx?Bill=HB3076#

I’m done…Kill This Bill!!!

More Oklahoma “Obamacare” Shennanigans? HB2490

February 8, 2012

 

Oh Goody!!! (NOT!) Ever hear of “rap back”? Well, guess what? That is a really neat way for state (but mainly Fed) gov’t to collect and hoard the biometric info of innocent citizens. Its SO important that PPACA (Obamacare) mandates the collection of biometric info as well as “mandating” states set-up their own “rap-back” program: Oklahoma??? You betcha! And here it is, in committee today! http://www.oklegislature.gov/BillInfo.aspx?Bill=HB2490

  • FROM HB2490: “When deemed appropriate, the Bureau is authorized to provide rap back information consisting of subsequent changes or updates to a criminal history record to the person or entity that has previously requested the particular criminal history record.”

From The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services: https://www.cms.gov/SurveyCertificationGenInfo/Downloads/backgroundcheckqanda.pdf

From the above link:    “Each participating State is required to develop and test a rap-back system by which State law enforcement departments immediately inform the State of any criminal convictions against the employee that occur following the pre-employment background check.”

ANY QUESTIONS???  KILL THIS BILL!!!

AxXiom for Liberty LIVE – 16 Dec. 2011

December 16, 2011

Tonight on AxXiom for Liberty from 6:00 – 8:00pm CST, Kaye and I have GREAT information filled show lined up with some great guests. 

We’ll discuss NTSB’s (not to mention the Fed push via Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood) edict to the state for a BAN on elctronic device use in privately owned vehicles and what at least one Oklahoma state Representative had to say on the subject.

Smart Meter “Opt-Out” Vicky Davis was FORCED (and you will not believe how) to accept having her analog meter removed and replaced by a new SmartMeter.

The Oklahoma Turnpike Authority seems to be shifting gears on data collection and it seems as if “wasting your money” is a part of this shift.

Some school children just aren’t allowed to have an opinion, in at least one school in Oklahoma, without facing some pretty demeaning consequences.

Kaye and I welcome Oklahoma House District 1 Republican hopeful, Joe Silk to the show to give us some insight and thoughts on running not only as a conservative but as a conservative with an “R” by his name, in a VERY heavily Democrat registered district. 

We’ll also have Jon Scolamiero join us.  Jon is the Outreach Captain for the Oklahoma Tenth Amendment Center and we’ll be discussing everything from the goals and actions of The Tenth Amendment center, both in Oklahoma and nationwide, to states rights and individual Liberty.

OH…one more note:  Not promising anything, but…we do expect a call from Liberty activist, TV and Radio host, and former Congressional candidate, Adam Kokesh during the show to talk about tomorrows Libertea Rally at the Oklahoma State Capitol.

Tune in or ListenLive every Friday from 6:00 – 8:00pm CST:  In the OKC are we’re on 102.3FM.  On-line – visit www.logosradionetwork.com, www.ruleoflawradio.com, or www.axxiomforliberty.com.  You can also listen via your phone by dialing: 512-485-9010.

AxXiom for Liberty_09-23-11: Gary Graham and Amanda Teegarden

September 22, 2011

AxXiom for Liberty — 09-23-11 –Gary Graham and Amanda Teegarden

    

This Friday, 23 September 2011, Kaye and I ask:  “How Free Do you want To Be?” and welcome a couple of very special guests.  First up will be Conservative  Hollywood actor, writer, producer, director, etc, etc…Gary Graham!  Then we have the pleasure of bringing back OK-SAFE’s Amanda Teegarden.  Tune-in or ListenLive this Friday from 6:00 – 8:00pm CST www.ruleoflawradio.com.

Many of us in Hollywood feel that since they pay us so well to do something so relatively easy, that we owe it to ourselves, and to the world, to ‘give back’.  Many of us, with that artificial sense of self-importance that comes with being in the movies or on television, feel we are poised and even obligated to ‘weigh in’ on important issues of national or geo-political nature.  When really, most Americans would just prefer we ‘shut up and sing’ (or dance or act or whatever it is we do).  Yet we blather on and many of us expose our idiocy (not naming names) — and some of us perhaps even intellectually raise the debate (again, no names… ahem).  And forgive me if I reduce the seemingly mind-boggling chasm between our disparate philosophies to this simple point:   The Left wants the government to exercise and disseminate compassion towards our fellow man…and the Right wants the individual to do it.” — Gary Graham 

Gary Graham.  Gary is a member of a group that was once thought to be near extinction — Hollywood conservatives.  We are going to talk with Gary about what is so “controversial” (see below) about his opinions, just how “liberal” is Hollywood, his thoughts on the current state of political affairs, his latest movie project – “Dust of War” – and that thing that has special place in his heart…The Gary Graham Garage Band!

Gary Graham was born in Long Beach, California and grew up in and around Orange County. The son of a medical doctor, he too aspired to a career in medicine. However, despite showing prowess in the medical sciences, Gary left pre-med to study theater arts at the University of California, Irvine, in the early seventies.

His first feature film role was opposite George C. Scott in “Hardcore.” Since that time Gary has appeared in numerous feature films such as “Robot Jox,” “The Last Warrior,” “Man Trouble,” and “Hollywood Knights,” many TV movies and series. From 1990 to 1996, he starred as Matt Sikes in FOX TV’s “Alien Nation.” More recently he was seen in recurring roles as Capt. Ingles on “J.A.G.” and as Ambassador Soval in “Star Trek: Enterprise.” He’s played more than 30 TV roles, and has also been in more than 30 movies. 

Gary’s also very active and vocal politically, and writes a regular column on [Big Hollywood], voicing his ever controversial opinions as well as appearing at several political rallies, where he really can get the crowd going.

Still active in the film business, Gary now is a producer for the new reality TV show, “The Ultimate Shooter,” and is working with Jace Hall and HD FILMS at Warner Brothers writing and producing the new internet web-series, “What If..?” He also stars in the popular web-series “Dead End City,” on Strike.TV.

He lives in a small town outside of Los Angeles where he enjoys spending time with his family, working weekends as a volunteer Ski Patroller, golfing, and flying.

Oh…let’s not forget the MUSIC!  The G3 Band – The Gary Graham Garage Band.

Next up, our very own Oklahoma Star, Amanda Teegarden, the Executive Director of  OK-SAFE

 

Last week the first committee hearing on the Federal Health Care Reform Law was held at the Oklahoma state capitol.  This was an all-day meeting and figuring out what it all means is very difficult for most but what happens during these meetings is extremely important.

The stated purpose of the hearings according to OK. State Sen. Stansilawski;

“Oklahoma patients, taxpayers, businesses, health practitioners, insurers and others all have wide-ranging questions and concerns about this largely unwanted new federal law. The law will affect all Oklahomans, some in significant ways, so this committee will seek to address all relevant questions and concerns for the benefit of all Oklahomans.”

Oklahoma Health Insurance Exchange or Faustian Bargain?

 Lucky for us the ever diligent Amanda Teegarden was there and this Friday she will be with us to decipher what it all means.  While we are at it, we have asked Amanda to apply her government-speak translation skills to an upcoming event to be held in Norman, OK. in October.

What is the “New Economy”?  Why is our Governor now being referred to as “Oklahoma’s CEO”?  What exactly is Foreign Direct Investment?

Join us Friday September 23, 2011 on AxXiom for Liberty 6-8 PM CST on Rule of Law Radio Network!

Oklahoma Criminal Defense Weekly_Biometrics, the Global DMV and Kaye Beach

August 17, 2011

www.ocdw.com                               08.15.11                      James L. Hankins, Publisher

REPRINTED WITH PERMISSION FROM OCDW

FEATURE ARTICLE .

 Biometrics, the Global DMV, and the Oklahoma City Fusion Center:

And no, Homeland Security does not need a warrant

Kaye Beach, a young wife and mother, made the decision this year to not renew her Oklahoma driver’s license.  The digital photos on driver’s licenses are now cutting edge biometrics easily read by facial recognition software. Once an image has been captured by CCTV cameras, handheld scanners, or other devices, it can be linked to a comprehensive database of your personal information, no warrant required. 

 Ms. Beach was recently cited for driving without a license, so she raised the retainer needed for excellent counsel who obtained a dismissal of the charge in a Norman, OK, courtroom.  No longer has a defendant, Ms. Beach now become a plaintiff: she is suing the State of Oklahoma for the right to opt for a driver’s license that does not contain biometric information.  A photo not of biometric quality, but still adequate for identification purposes, can easily be substituted for the digital, high resolution image.

 The presumption of innocence that is the foundation of any free society comes with a corollary right to privacy and anonymity. You may give up your right to privacy in a public place – anyone can photograph you – but all nine justices of the Supreme Court have acknowledged a citizen’s right to anonymity. As long as you are not behaving in a way that gives rise to a suspicion of criminality you are not required to state your name or show identification.

 A co-author of YOUR BODY IS YOUR ID toured the Fusion Center located in Oklahoma City, and asked the former OSBI director, DeWade Langley, who oversaw the fusion center, if the federal government needs to provide a warrant to obtain information about citizens directly from the Oklahoma Fusion Center or from any of the databases the fusion center has access to, ( law enforcement databases, motor vehicle databases, public-private partnerships, corrections databases, public health databases, corporate databases, data mining companies such as Acxiom, ChoicePoint, and LexisNexis, The International Justice and Public Safety Network, and many others)  Agent Langley replied a warrant is not necessary.   

 L-1 Identity Solutions, the largest provider of biometrics in the United States, is involved in the creation of state driver’s licenses and passports, and contracts with nearly every intelligence agency in the United States. Past and current members of the company’s Board of Directors include a former head of the CIA, a former director of the FBI, the former head administrator of the TSA, among other members of the intelligence community. The company, which has in the past provided Chinese nationals with facial recognition software that was used to track dissidents, is currently up for sale and the potential buyer is a French company, Safran.  The Safran group has 55,000 employees worldwide and has partnered with China for forty years.

 Essentially, what our government is doing by collecting and centralizing ever more information about each of us, is increasing what privacy expert Bruce Schneier refers to as the value of the prize for hackers and identity thieves. In July, 2010, the Washington Post published a disturbing series of articles indicating that the massive intelligence being gathered by the government, a large part of which is personal information on its citizens, is impossible to manage and therefore largely ineffective for national security purposes or to fight terrorism. There are, however, other purposes for which governments surveil their own citizens. In THE END OF AMERICA, Naomi Wolf lists ten steps always taken by the government in countries undergoing a fascist shift toward authoritarian rule. Fourth on the list is “surveil ordinary citizens”.  Subsequent to the events of 9/11, the other nine steps have also been put into place, or are in the process of being implemented, in America. 

 For further information refer to YOUR BODY IS YOUR ID, available at www.constitutionalalliance.org or visit the Axxiom For Liberty website created by Kaye Beach at www.axiomamuse.wordpress.com , or visit www.stoprealidcoalition.com . To view the EPIC (Electronic Privacy Information Center) Amicus Brief on Fusion Centers visit:  

 http://www.scribd.com/doc/21970412/EPIC-Amicus-Brief-on-Fusion-Centers

 The information in this article has been largely distilled from YOUR BODY IS YOUR ID by R.U. Free with permission from the authors.    Patty Hankins, pattyhankins@yahoo.com

The NEW White House Rural Council: A “Take-Down”

June 23, 2011

Point-by-Point “Take-Down” of  Executive Order establishing the White House Rural Council:

Below is the White House link to the Press Release “explaining” Executive Order #13575.  You may want to view it first.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2011/06/09/obama-administration-establishes-white-house-rural-council-strengthen-ru

 

1). JOBS — You gotta be kiddin’ me! Yea, right…this administration has a stellar track record with job creation…NOT!  By the way…Government does NOT create jobs. 

 2). Agriculture Market… Expansion: Get Gov’t out of the market!!! The MARKET functions best when central-planners leave it alone, thus the term FREE-MARKET…you know, that thing that once made America the envy of the world!

 3). Innovation — Thru subsidies???? Huh? What??? You gotta be kiddin’ me! Leave us alone, let the market function, get out of the way, repeal most regulations and we’ll innovate like you’ve never seen (which, by the way, these folks have no idea what REAL innovation is).

 4.) Networks: More REGIONALISM here. BTW, REGIONALISM only serves to break-down representative government. Via REGIONAL councils, rather than elected representatives who are able to be held accountable, more rules and regulations will be foisted upon We, the people and we are left without avenues of recourse and redress of grievances.

5). Health Care — Nothing needs to be said about this, we know whats implied here: Centrally-Planned and managed Health Care that will, once again, drive costs up even more that will be chased by more of OUR hard-earned $$$.

 6). Education — Increase Post-Secondary enrollment rates??? Huh? What? Are they going to MANDATE enrollment? Are they going to now pay for college with MORE tax $$$? Increased Graduation rates for rural students in college? Huh? What? Is gov’t going to supply cheat-sheets or tax-payer funded tutors?  Lower standards (again) maybe?

 7). Broadband — this is already well in the works and once again Gov’t is interfering with the market by taking more of OUR $$$ (taxes and “fees”).

 8). Infrastructure — coordinate investment? Huh??? What??? Are we sooooo “stoopid” that we can’t “COORDINATE”?

 9). Ecosystem Markets — Here’s the REAL reason for this council. “Expanding opportunities for conservation”, Uh huh…yea…right. Let me translate this: Increased PRIVATE land management by the FEDs. That means that YOUR (OUR) private land can be used as we see fit IF…IF…IF…we do so the way “they” say we are allowed to do so.

10).  The history of government desires, and resulting policies, to “do good”  reminds me of what Ronald Reagan told us years ago:  “The nine most terrifying words in the English language — I’m from the government and I’m here to help.”   WE REALLY DO NOT NEED OR WANT GOVERNMENT TO BE MORE INVOLVED, YOU’VE DONE ENOUGH ALREADY…Thank you, and goodbye, now!

Thoughts on Thomas Jefferson Memorial “Dance Party”: It’s about the Snake!

June 8, 2011

                      08 June, 2011

This past Saturday, 04 June 2011, my son and I happened to be in Washington D.C.  The timing coincided with the second installment of what is termed: “Dance Party at TJ’s”.  These public displays of dance are in protest of a Supreme Court ruling which upheld a United States Park Service regulation outlawing public-displays of this nature in certain areas of public property.  The Jefferson Memorial rotunda was at the center of this decision.  The first “Dance Party at TJ’s” resulted in multiple arrests and very heavy-handed tactics in carrying out those arrests by Park Service Police.

          This second “Dance Party at TJ’s” was a direct result of how the first was handled.  I will admit, as the “dancing” began it was a bit awkward.  Personally, I enjoy and believe in adhering to the intended reverence a memorial denotes.  Then, in a matter of but a few moments, a soothing calm erased the feeling awkwardness.  As I watched this disparate group — all ages, both sexes, many cultural and racial backgrounds, all across the political spectrum, varying social and economic backgrounds — performing, in what was admittedly a bit unseemly and raucous  dance moves (nothing lewd, mind you – just what would “normally” be deemed “inappropriate”…if that is possible give that this was an “abnormal” situation), I gazed toward the face of Jefferson.  

          At this moment in time the Jefferson Memorial was home to scores of U.S. Park Police, S.W.A.T., uniformed officers with what appeared to M-4 automatic weapons, uniformed officers in riot gear, mounted police (both horse and motorcycle) what I’ll call “plain-clothes dudes”.  All there to…??? 

          Just above the head of the Thomas Jefferson statue, inscribed around the bottom of the dome, I re-read the words of Jefferson: “I have sworn up0n the altar of god eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man”.  I looked back at the dancing crowd…gazed toward Jefferson…immediately thought of Voltaire’s influence on Jefferson and the Voltaire quote paraphrased by Jefferson: I may not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”   Another scan of the “dancing” group was all it took…the Spirit of Jefferson was all around.  He was smiling from the Heavens above.  This was what FREEDOM looked like!

          No arrests were made and “Victory” was the mood of the participants.  The main stream media wrote opinions both for and against the actions of the “dancers”.  Leonard Pitts Jr., in the Kansas City Star, wrote:  “So what’s most offensive about these arrests for crimes of Terpsichore is not the insult to free expression, but the insult to common sense, the implied assumption that unless some guy waving his arms around is thrown to the ground and handcuffed, the rest of us will indulge our secret desire to do the Macarena in the temple of Lincoln.  There is something heavy-handed and totalitarian in that assumption” http://www.kansascity.com/2011/06/07/2930499/commentary-when-dancing-is-a-federal.html

Petula Dvorak, in the Washington Post, wrote:  “I’ll admit I was skeptical, too, given that there are greater things at risk in America these days.  Wait. Wasn’t that the stuff that got said about the kite-ins in 1970? And yet, we’d all probably agree that those arrests look preposterous in hindsight.” http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/dancers-at-the-jefferson-memorial-are-following-in-the-footsteps-of-hippie-kite-fliers/2011/06/02/AGkp7bHH_story_1.html

And Eva Rodriquez, in the Washington Post, wrote:  “Before last weekend, I wouldn’t have thought to associate “liberal” dance protestors with “conservative” gun rights advocates. But they actually have a lot in common: a profoundly distorted – and patently wrong – understanding of their constitutional rights.” http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-partisan/post/what-gun-and-dance-enthusiasts-have-in-common/2011/06/06/AGXJRMKH_blog.html?fb_ref=NetworkNews

          In the end, it really doesn’t matter what was written or covered by todays press…what matters is adherence to the intent and purpose of OUR founding.  That intent, that purpose, was inscribed above the head of Jefferson and can be found in other words of Jefferson:  “I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty, than those attending too small a degree of it.” AND “After all, if freedom of speech means anything, it means a willingness to stand and let people say things with which we disagree, and which do weary us considerably”

What are the “Dance Parties at TJ’s” REALLY all about?  It’s about the rattle-snake as illustrated on the Gadsden Flag…”Don’t Tread On Me”.  It’s about the warning system Benjamin Franklin wrote of when describing the symbolism of the rattlesnake on the flag:  “She never begins an attack, nor, when once engaged, ever surrenders: She is therefore an emblem of magnanimity and true courage. … she never wounds ’till she has generously given notice, even to her enemy, and cautioned him against the danger of treading on her.”  Notice was the purpose…We, the people of these United States of America know what Freedom looks like and what we are experiencing today is NOT recognizable! NOTICE!