Sunday, September 7, 2008

Musings: That Fearful Feeling

The world was golden when Koko and I stepped out into it, and perfumed by the taro flowering beside my front porch. Wailaleale was buried under clouds in varying shades of black, and a sheet of rain — soon accompanied by a half rainbow — fell in the distance, on its lower slopes.

And then it all shifted and the clouds drifted and Waialeale reappeared, a hulking mass of blue on a green landscape. Just then I ran into my neighbor Andy, and we were walking along the road, laughing and chatting about higher education, when a cop drove by, slowly, checking us out, and immediately Andy was worried, because his dog Momi wasn’t on a leash.

I guess it’s just the nature of cops, but they have a way of evoking paranoia and fear, even when you’ve called them for help, and especially when you haven’t, and they just appear, or worse, when you’re called to them, which is what happened to me not too long ago.

I was interviewing Mark Marshall in the civil defense building, which is part of the Babylon complex that houses KPD, when he got a call on his cell phone from Deputy Chief Clayton Arinaga, who said he wanted me stop by for a little chat when we were through.

My mind raced, searching for reasons for my summons: Was my registration expired? Had I accidentally parked in Arinaga’s spot? I had a hard time concentrating on Mark, and after he showed me around the Civil Defense building, whose command room rivals NASA’s, he walked me over to the Patrol Services Bureau, where a lieutenant — first name Ollie, I didn’t catch the last — unlocked the door and let me in, then locked it behind us. [Correction: It was Capt. Ale Quibilan]

By this time it was after 5 p.m. and no one was around, except for Lt. Kaleo Perez and Arinaga, who were waiting for me in a room, and after Ollie [Corrrex: Ale} introduced us, he hung around, too.

So there I was, with the three top officers in the Patrol Services Bureau arrayed in a semi-circle around me, all armed, in their badges and uniforms, and Arinaga starts off by saying they wanted to talk to me about the Aug. 7 protest over the burials at Naue because they had a lot of photographs taken at the site with people they couldn’t identify, and I was there, wasn’t I? And then he added, before I could waffle, we were just reading your website where you wrote all about it.

I asked if I’d be incriminating myself if I answered and Arinaga said, no, we’re just having a little chat here, so I said, yes, I was there. Then they wanted to know how I’d heard about it, and were other reporters contacted, too, and did I know who had brought the “blackbears” that the protesters used to link themselves together and did I know all the people at the protest or the guys who came from other islands and was Palikapu Dedman a “personal acquaintance” of mine — whatever that means, because aren’t all acquaintances inherently personal? — and finally, did I cover all the protests on the island and was I planning to cover the court hearing on the motion for an injunction to stop construction of Joe Brescia’s house at Naue?

And all the while I'm wondering if they going to arrest me, and if so, did I have enough cash in my purse to post bail, and I was hungry and shaking cold from the AC and I needed to pee. After about 30 or 40 minutes, Ollie [Corex: Ale] walked me to the door, unlocked it and I was free.

Except I was so rattled and shaken by the experience, even though I’ve dealt with cops professionally for decades, that I could barely eat dinner and my sleep was restless and torn by bad dreams, including one nightmare in which Perez said, “Thanks for all the information that will help us build more vacation rentals on Kauai.”

Upon hearing my story the next day, a friend who is reasonable in all things, and well-connected in the system, vouched for Arinaga as a nice guy and suggested that I call him directly and ask what that little session was really all about.

So I did, telling Arinaga that in my nearly 30 years as a journalist, I’d never before been questioned by the police about a protest I’d covered.

Arinaga said they’d been looking at photos taken at the protest site and saw a Caucasian lady standing in the back and somebody said, oh, she’s over at Civil Defense right now, so they decided they’d make the most of my availability and ask me a few questions. And while that sounded a tad fishy, I suppose such a coincidence could occur.

I told Arinaga it seemed rather odd that the three top officers in Patrol Services were in on the interview, and he said they all just happened to be there so they figured they’d sit in, and then I asked whether he, as deputy chief, typically got involved in misdemeanor investigations.

He admitted he did not, but that this was a rather sensitive case and they wanted to get it wrapped up quickly. And apparently they’re moving toward that, as at least three persons — Andrew Cabebe, Hank Fergertrom and Jim Huff — were arrested Friday on trespassing charges stemming from the Aug. 7 protest.

Finally, I told Arinaga that being interviewed after hours by three high-ranking police officers was extremely intimidating, and was that their intention?

He laughed, and said no, it was just the way things had worked out, but that I probably would have found it even more intimidating if he’d had me arrested and brought in for questioning.

It was all very congenial, despite that last comment, which reminded me that cops have the power, and even though you might never get convicted, or even charged, they can still impose the ugly drama of an arrest on your life if they want to.

And as the journalists arrested while covering the RNC protests in St. Paul discovered, it doesn’t matter if you’ve got press credentials and are simply doing your job.

Is it deliberate intimidation? I tend to think so, especially when it's directed at journalists who aren't part of the mainstream media. Does it work? Probably, with some people. But with others, like me, once you survive a frightening experience, you also lose some of your fear. And that's where the real power lies.

86 comments:

Anonymous said...

Absolutely outrageous! That little "chat" was totally an intimidation -- Arinaga's claims to the contrary wouldn't convince a third-grader.

The next "chat" should be Joan asking the Chief to explain how this little stunt won't give a big black eye to his attempts to heal his department's image.

Anonymous said...

Talk about role reversal. Don't the journalists normally ask the cops about the investigation?

letatsunitemerde said...

Thanks Joan for your honest work and diligence.
I would interpret that impromptu (as far as you are concerned, but planned by them) somewhat involuntary meeting as intimidation and harrassment with an underlying threat.

They were trying to get you to reveal names and information collected through the course of your reporting. Trying to sideline the confidential nature of your work because, as people trust you, whereas they donʻt trust the police anymore (their own fault) you would be privy to more information than they.

OK, thatʻs one part; the 2nd part is the unauthorized sequestering which is disturbing and as a female, probably was out of line on their part and a reprimand is in order. They could have conducted this questioning in an open area. There you are, in a locked roomed with 3 cops and no female officer...itʻs a detention that you got coerced into. Involuntary.

QUESTION: Does Chief Perry know about this ʻinterrogation tacticʻ? If not, I think he should be made aware of it as soon as possible because, in the future, it could be done to anyone anywhere and no matter what a person says occurred to the contrary will be dismissed due to 3 officers being present as witnesses.
I think it was unprocedural and there are very good reasons for following procedures.

letatsunitemerde said...

One more thing. I see that you titled this segment of your site, "..That Fearful Feeling"

By your own admission of feelings of fear and endangerment evoked, something is very wrong with this line of questioning. And the fact that you, are as far from a person having to fear police as I can imagine, it was terribly wrong. Thatʻs what you call HARRASSMENT.

Doug said...

Wow.

Too late now, but I you may want to have a look at this and this from YouTube...

Anonymous said...

She wasn't under arrest so could have demanded to be let out at any time. If they wanted to keep her they would have to charge her with something.

According to the report, she wasn't asked for anything contraversial, so who cares?

I kinda like the intimidation factor.

letatsunitemerde said...

Anonymous said..."She wasn't under arrest so could have demanded to be let out at any time. If they wanted to keep her they would have to charge her with something.

According to the report, she wasn't asked for anything contraversial, so who cares?"


Anonymous, you are wrong.

And I wonʻt go into details because you and others may be on a ʻdefenseʻ fishing expedition.

Anonymous said...

"And I wonʻt go into details because you and others may be on a ʻdefenseʻ fishing expedition."

Nah, that's just Gadfly. And anyway, under the facts Joan has laid out, the cops haven't done anything actionable for which they would need any legal defense.

letatsunitemerde said...

They sure did.

Anonymous said...

Okay, I'll bite. What did they do that was actionable? Are you claiming they broke the law?

Anonymous said...

> Okay, I'll bite. What did they do that was actionable? Are you claiming they broke the law? <

Oh, please. A Deputy Police Chief invites a left-leaning lady writer in for an after-hours "chat" without disclosing the subject? She finds herself in a locked room surrounded by three armed officers, who question her about the identity of other protesters at a demonstration she attended?

Are you serious that the issue here is whether or not any laws were broken? What is it about "intimidation" that you don't understand?

Joan said...

I need to clarify that the actual room where I was being questioned wasn't locked, but the suite/section of the building where we were was. Still, I couldn't go anywhere w/o them unlocking the door to let me out.

Anonymous said...

Intimidation is not illegal. After=hours meetings are not illegal. Being in a locked room with 3 officers is not illegal.

She could have asked to leave and they would have had to let her go at that time, otherwise, they would then be breaking a law.

They did not read her her rights so she wasn't under arrest.

They didn't go through her handbag nor pat her down (unlawful search and seasure) so no laws broken there.

No laws were broken at all. You may not like the manner in which they made their inquiries, but there's nothing actionable here.

Even if they arrested her and brougnt her in for questioning and then let her go without booking her for any named crime, that would have been lawful as well since she was at the event and was in a position to provide info.

You're going to have to get used to the difference between damaging your delicate sensibilities and breaking the law.

Anonymous said...

> You're going to have to get used to the difference between damaging your delicate sensibilities and breaking the law. <

You're going to have to go back to school and learn the lessons on citizenship, civility and misuse of authority that they taught the year you were asleep.

Anonymous said...

"citizenship, civility and misuse of authority"

Is there a law in there somewhere that you feel was broken or are you just unhappy with how they acted?

Their use of authority, I'm sorry to inform you, was well within the bounds of legality. They could have gone much further before encountering those bounds.

Run this by an ACLU lawyer and see if he/she can keep a straignt face.

"That cop was downright uncivil to me and didn't act like a good citizen! I want his badge!"

hehehehe

letatsunitemerde said...

"You're going to have to go back to school and learn the lessons on citizenship, civility and misuse of authority that they taught the year you were asleep."

Thatʻs good.

I donʻt want to say anymore so they can cook their books and prepare for what could be, but it was wrong. And consider the fact that this is par for the course, already on record as the norm for the police to ʻfondleʻ and otherwise violate women...unless the new chief is able to clean it up.
So there you have it, thatʻs the rep. and thereʻs still active duty officers that think the behavior is acceptable.

Anonymous said...

Although this isn't LA or NY, it isn't Maybery either and the chief of police isn't Andy Grifith.

Intimidation is a tool of law enforcement. Just seeing all those weapons hanging from their Sam Brown "utility belts" is designed to serve as a form of intimidation.

The police is a quasi-military force for the purpose of keeping the peace and enforcing the law regardless of the relative injustice it may embody.

Intimidation is just another tool to that end. It can be shown in numbers, weaponry, tactics, etc.

All legal.

Sometimes they don't want you to feel comfortable. They want to let you know who's really in charge.

Don't ever think that they are not in charge. Then your actions just might lead to real harm.

Anonymous said...

"Are you serious that the issue here is whether or not any laws were broken?"

'merde said the cops did something actionable. That makes the issue whether or not any laws were broken, by definition. Keep up with the arguments.

"What is it about "intimidation" that you don't understand?"

Bumper sticker slogans don't add up to constitutional rights. Or violations of the law.

Besides, you're a third person with an apparent attitude getting all bent out of joint over some hearsay you read on the internet. You've already described the incident as more intimidating than Joan did. By the time protesters are gathered on Rice street with signs demonstrating the police it'll be blown up to the point where the cops were tazering her.

Anonymous said...

> Their use of authority, I'm sorry to inform you, was well within the bounds of legality. They could have gone much further before encountering those bounds.

Run this by an ACLU lawyer and see if he/she can keep a straignt face. <


It's pitiful, the people who have no sense of the difference between civility and legality. Who think that "not illegal" is the same as permissible -- and who thus leave the fabric of society to be woven by lawyers.

Anonymous said...

"It's pitiful, the people who have no sense of the difference between civility and legality."

You're completely missing the point. It was letatsunitemerde who said it was illegal. We're pointing out that letatunitemerde is wrong. If you want to argue that it wasn't illegal but they shouldn't have done it anyway then have at it. Like us, you're disagreeing with letatsunitemerde. Whether they should or should not have done it that way, that's a different argument.

Anonymous said...

I do know the difference between civility and legality. I, unlike other posters, don't confuse them.

Your phrasing of the fabric of society woven by lawyers was very good.

I think if it as a basket with a lining, like those used for dinner rolls. The basket is indeed woven by legislators and litigators. It is what holds societies together. The cloth that usually separates the rolls from the basket is civility. Sometimes thick, sometines thin, sometimes absent.

But the legal basket is what holds it all together.

Joan said...

You've already described the incident as more intimidating than Joan did.

No one has described it as more intimidating than I did. It was extremely intimidating, and I am not a person who is easily intimidated.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure it was, Joan. It was meant to be. Although uncivil in the sense that you weren't invited into a nice unlocked conference room and given a cup of coffee for a low key one on one chat with a cop not wearing his utility belt, do you think any of your legal rights were violated? If unsure, is the issue troubling enough for you to seek a free initial legal opinion?

Joan said...

I called an attorney friend on the way home from the police station, and while I believe they acted improperly -- especially calling Mark Marshall to have him deliver their message while I was in the midst of interviewing him -- no, I don't think my legal rights were violated.

letatsunitemerde said...

Letʻs put it this way: Joan has credibility. Does anyone in blah blah land dispute that?
OK. Now that thatʻs established, the fact that she was so intimidated indicates something was done improperly...out of the ʻnormʻ so to say. Otherwise her fear antennae wouldnʻt have been on alert.

2nd, the fact that this discussion is evoking so much ʻdeep thinkingʻ and has gone so far, also indicates there is question to impropriety.

Did anyone know where Joan was when she was ʻguestedʻ at the station?
Point is there are ways to question someone and there are ways not to, especially a woman. And donʻt ANYONE ever forget the fact that this matter is regarding a female and 3 male officers.

Ed Coll said...

Anyone ever get an email like this for writing a letter to the editor of TGI? Perhaps it is just my overly senstitve nature but I felt a chill!

--- begin email ---

Original Message
Subject: Furthering the deception
Date: Sun, 18 Jun 2006 00:26:22 -1000
From: R. Asher asher@hawaii.rr.com>
To:

Be very careful. For what you are conveying could be interpreted
as furthering the fraud. One may pursue conspiracy charges. For what
you have offered is not accurate and just perpetuates the deception.

You know that the "2" page version on the web-site reflects the
second page to be of a different seized font then that of the first.
This I suspect or suggest to you was done so that the third page
signature could be fitted on the second page, less of course all
verbiage contained on page three (of original letter).

Be careful my friend.

Do not risk your integrity and reputation promoting a fraud.

--- end email ---

The Kauai Board of Ethics assumed R. Asher is Lt. Roy Asher of KPD and concluded no violation of the ethics laws occurred.

After a Attorney General raid on former Police Chief Lum's house and a six month "investigation" it turned out to be a sheet feed error as I worte in my TGI letter.

The take home message to me is the Police can pretty much do anything they want, to anyone they want, anytime the want. Lets be careful out there!

Anonymous said...

..."'not illegal' is the same as permissible"...

Isn't all civil disobedience - a hallmark of rightous action for most here who read these lib blogs - defined by this grey area between permissible and "not illegal"?

It cuts both ways. If the protesters can do it, lots of intimidation there, so can the cops.

Katy Rose said...

Well, whether or not what the police did was "legal" I object to the idea that our security as a community depends upon authoritarianism and intimidation.

I believe that we achieve security through fairness and greater equality, among other things.

I object to the way the police attempted to coerce information out of a journalist for prosecutorial purposes.

If journalists do not feel safe reporting on important social issues and resistance movements, we all suffer an injury. Our ability to make informed choices and understand our world is greatly assisted by a free and open press.

What the police did in this case, as with the arrests of jounalists in the Twin Cities last week, was to send a threatening message to all journalists about covering protests.

Joan, thank you for persisting despite being frightened.

Anonymous said...

Next time just say no.

KonaK said...

The police asked you questions? In the police station? My God, we're this close to a fascist reign of terror! Just look at poor Katy, bravely telling herself, as a sort of mantra, that "fear makes the wolf look bigger." Our fundamental right to make a political statement by tossing a trash can through a store window is in jeopardy!!!!

Katy Rose said...

I'm the last person to throw a term like "fascist" around, since it's so often used as a synonym for "anything that's bad." But I think Konak ignores the implications of increased police supression of dissent, a visible by-product of the "war on terror."

I suppose that people who walk the line and generally agree with the status quo are content enough not to be skeptical of police activities.

Remember that old saying "Question authority"? Well, I tend to question the existence of authority, period.

Somebody above commented that cops are supposed to be intimidating - as if that's a good thing. Does anybody else see how nuts that is? It's based completely on the idea that if we weren't afraid of authority and punishment, we'd all kill eachother and throw trash cans through windows. What a woeful outlook.

As I see it, coercive social arrangements based on domination are inherently violent and the very thing that creates unrest and injustice.

I don't care if what the cops did was "legal" - I think it was slimy and reprehensible.

Anonymous said...

I was unaware that Joan or the reporters arrested at the RNC were questioned, detained, or arrested for "tossing a trash can through a store window."

Anonymous said...

I can accept that Katy completely missed the brilliant point made by Anon 6:57 because she was writing her own post at that time; but, there was another opportunity to address the acusation of a double standard and that opportunity was completely sidestepped. If you celebrate uncivil disobedience, then don't react with mock indignation if the opposition acts with (legal; but,) less than angelic idealism. If you celebrate new technology to lock arms and tresspass, then don't expect those whose job it is to stop you not to do everything they legally can to do that job. There are plenty of people who consider the illegal and uncivil actions at the harbor, along with the incivility at the War Memorial, last year to be "slimy and reprehensible." Those of us who do consider you to be the pot calling the kettle black. To switch metaphors: You built the playing field. The other team has now had plenty of practice. How does it feel to be hoist by your own petard?

Larry said...

Quite possibly the interview was recorded. It's not unusual. The recording can be the basis for future questioning. "On Friday you told us....".

Hawaii does have a shield law, if it ever comes to that. Meanwhile, I wonder if all of us could benefit from Joan's example and the recommendations of the YouTube videos advising not to say anything to the police.

Joan said...

Yes, Larry, watching those You tube videos cited on Doug's comment really opened my eyes. I had no idea cops considered lying and deception acceptable means for getting people to talk. Those are not tools I use as an interviewer or investigator. It's definitely best to say no when cops ask you to talk, although that's harder to do than people might think when it actually happens.

Anonymous said...

You had no idea cops used lying and deception???

Don't you watch cop/lawyer shows??

Heard of sting operations or undercover operations??

Cops pretending to be kids on interenet chat sites?

Of course they can use these tactics, as long as they don't initiate a criminal act!

I'm actually shocked that you had no idea. Maybe you ought to have a long talk with that lawyer friend, assuming his practice includes criminal law, to learn the scope of police legal authority and tactics.

And get a TV and watch more cop/lawyer shows.

Anonymous said...

Not only are lying and deception acceptable means for getting people to talk, they are totally sanctioned by the courts. That's why we were pointing out that when letatsunitemerde said the police did something actionalble he/shewas totally full of, well, merde.

Katy Rose said...

Well,anonymous 9:18, I did not miss that point at all.

I fully accept that when people object to the actions of the state (including the corporate elite), they must sometimes resist the state's laws in order to effectively challenge the status quo.

In the process, arrests are part of the deal, and the more effectively people resist, the more strenuously the state will push back. Everyone involved in social movements understands the costs and benefits of non-cooperation (civil disobedience.)

The question is really upon those,like you, who support the status quo to decide to what lengths they feel comfortable supporting the state in its supression of dissent. How much force is worth it to you to defeat social movements? What kinds of police and military tactics are acceptable to you? Fire hoses? German Shepherds? Torture? Unwarranted searches? Spying? Up to you,pal.

Are you content with the fact that the same things Martin Luther King Jr got arrested for in the 60's could now be charged under the Patriot Act as terrorism?

Meanwhile, we who are dissident will decide to what lengths we are willing to go to effect change.

This does not mean that I cede my human right to critique the actions of the state.

Sometimes arrests are part of our tactics and work to our advantage in terms of amplifying public awareness of issues. But don't expect me to stand silently by while the state apparatus is employed to silence dissenting voices.

Anonymous said...

"the state apparatus is employed to silence dissenting voices."

A romantic notion indeed, at least for leftists. But consider that maybe the police were just trying to find out who some law breakers were.

Ed Coll said...

For an expert on illegal detention and harassment's experiences you might want to check out Edward Lawson (AKA the California Walkman) at;
http://edwardlawson.com/
Lawson went all the way to the US supreme court and won against the state of California for their racist gestapo tactics.

Anonymous said...

"Meanwhile, we who are dissident will decide to what lengths we are willing to go to effect change."

Destruction of private property?
Bombing abortion clinics?
Kidnappings & killings?
Cyber crime?
Bank robberies, etc?

All those acts were done by dissidents pushing some radical cause or another.

It's up to you, pal. Where do you draw the line? Saying you wouldn't personally do it but would not condemn those others who do leaves your hands dirty.

Where do you draw the line, Katy, in doing or supporting by non-condemnation of the acts of others?

Name specific acts of representing "within the line" and "over the line" that represent your position...not high-sounding rhetoric about "the greater good" and "do what must be done", etc.

Considering what I believe most die-hard dissidents would say, I certainly support and would activly participate in wiretapping, suspension of certain ammentments to increase the force of law, etc.

I have no problem with Getmo, either.

Katy Rose said...

Unlike the United States government, I draw the line at dominating people through violent force.

I draw the line at injuring, killing and torturing people.

However, I don't rule out self-defense. If someone physically attacked me, my family or another person or group, I would engage in defense.

I don't consider property damage, when it does not harm living things, to be violence. This does not mean I would ever engage it in it myself, but I don't give it blanket condemnation.

Other leftists have different parameters. None of them have ever remotely approached the level of violence and coercion engaged by the state and corporations in "defense" of money, property and prestige.

Anonymous said...

I agree. What actions move a person from dissident to terrorist?

It sounds like committing or conspiring to commit most illegal acts in furtherance of a social/religious/political cause just could be defined as terrorism.

I certainly wouldn't want to go there. How'd you like to be put on a "no fly" list while living on Kauai, or in the state in general?

Then maybe you wouldn't mind the HSF...hehe

Anonymous said...

Condoning property damage for "the cause" puts you square in the sights of supporting terrorism, in my book, and most others, I belive.

Shame on you!

How many supporters/perpitrators of property damage for "the cause" unintentionally killed/harmed someone else?

Collaterial damage?

Shame on you!!

Anonymous said...

I'm anon 8:55. What I agreed with was anon 8:17.

Joan said...

You had no idea cops used lying and deception???

Yes, I did, but i thought it was more the MO of rogue cops, not SOP. But watching that cop on the video speak so cavalierly and openly about deliberately setting people up did kind of shock me.

What really bothered me was the way he kept saying, but I don't try to send innocent people to jail. Cops aren't the ones who decide who is innocent or guilty, but apparently they get into that mind set, which then allows them to rationalize all sorts of bad behavior.

It does raise a lot of troubling questions about why citizens should be expected to act ethically and honestly when the instruments of social control aren't held to the same standards.

Anonymous said...

Well, there you go, Katy. A perfect reason for unwarranted wiretaps and suspending search and seasure laws. Eliminate all "technicalities" preventing the aprehension and conviction of anyone suspected of acting, conspiring or supporting terroristic acts against property.

If the radicals want a war, a few modifications to existing laws will certainly bring it to them.

Anonymous said...

So, sinking the HSF, bombing an abortion clinic, torching a cop car, etc etc is fine with you if done in support of "a cause". Not just for criminal intent, mind you, but for the "high moral road cause".

You'd support such actions, would you, even if not participating in any active role?

I'd be the first to support wiretapping your house!

Anonymous said...

Cops are allowed to set the stage for a criminal act, but not to pull the suspect through it or initiate it themselves.

Ex: the female cop posing as a hooker. She cannot perform any criminal act herself in furtherance of making an arrest, such as exposing herself. She cannot talk money. But she can be alluring and hooker-like as a baited trap to see who bites.

That's why many "johns" ask right off for the girl to expose herself at least somwehat, just to prove she isn't a cop.

Anonymous said...

Self defense is an appropriate use of defensive violence (not offensive).

BUT, self defense does not mean, in my opinion, resisting arrest or resisting any crowd control order.

If you raise your little sign in a convention and are escorted out, do not resist unless you are willing to face abuse with mace, tazer, clubs, etc. and not later whine about it.

Those things are not self defense since you put yourself in that situation, essentially caused the situation.

Katy Rose said...

"Other leftists have different parameters. None of them have ever remotely approached the level of violence and coercion engaged by the state and corporations in 'defense' of money, property and prestige."


I should clarify that I am referring to the grassroots left. There have been plenty of bad authoritarian actors on the left and the right around the world and I have no patience for their coercive and violent tactics.

Ultimately, I am anti-authoritarian, so I dislike pyramidal power structures and I believe that state power is inherently violent and coercive, since it relies on the threat and use of force to maintain "order."

Anonymous said...

"I should clarify that I am referring to the grassroots left."

"None of them have ever remotely approached the level of violence and coercion engaged by the state and corporations in 'defense' of money, property and prestige."

Oh puh-lease! The Symbionese Liberation Army committed bank robberies, two murders and other various acts of violence over the two year period of its activity.

The Black Panthers killed nine cops and wounded 56 others in multiple shoot outs. They sold drugs, killed informants and were basically indistinguishable from any other group of mobsters.

The Weather Underground explicitly said militancy should replace nonviolent forms of protest. The group almost certainly planted a bomb at the San Fran police station that killed one cop and wounded another. They exploded numerous other devices without human casualties except for members of the group killed when bombs they were preparing to plant at a an officers' dance at the Fort Dix Army base and the library at Columbia University prematurely detonated.

Samuel Melville bombed 8 office buildings in NYC in '69 as protest against the Vietnam War and U.S. imperialism. He helped lead the Attica Prison riots.

Oscar Lopez Rivera, an activist and community leader with a lot of good works on behalf of the poor to his credit went underground in 1975 and participated in the bombing of 28 sites in Chicago.

I don't expect Katy to believe that any of these groups and individuals were actually guilty of acts of violence, but many of the people involved have themselves admitted it. In fact, former Weatherman William Ayers recently embarrassed Obama, with whom he has some tangential ties, by insisting that to this day he thinks the group's bombings were the right thing to do.

Anonymous said...

When you have both sides claiming a moral imperative to do whatever they want; however they want to do it, you have a free for all. Those in the middle get to watch both sides point fingers at each other while shouting "Shame on you!" It's kind of like cuurent political events; or, the second grade.

letatsunitemerde said...

Not actionable?
The circumstances under which
police-citizen questioning becomes a seizure under the Fourth Amendment has significant implications.
The relevant inquiry is whether, under the totality of the circumstances,
“a reasonable person would feel free to decline the officer’s
requests or otherwise terminate the encounter.
The core question in determining whether police questioning becomes a seizure, is the voluntariness of the interaction.
The concept of voluntariness is an accommodation of the importance of the police activity with the
possibility of unfair or brutal police tactics.
The relevant standard,therefore, is whether the police conduct is so intimidating as to
overwhelm the will of a reasonable person and critically impair that person’s self-determination.

Thatʻs all I was trying to say.

Joan said...

Hmmm. Now that gives me some food for thought. Thank you, letatsunitemerde.

Anonymous said...

Would you care to site some statutes or case law to support that?

Without backup, it's just your feelings. Besides, Joan's lawyer friend indicated there were no laws broken.

The law is stacked in its own favor. That's the point.

letatsunitemerde said...

Anon. said: "Would you care to site some statutes or case law to support that?"



On this blog? Actually not.
Aloha.

Joan said...

Besides, Joan's lawyer friend indicated there were no laws broken.

I never said anything about what my lawyer friend indicated. I said "I don't think my legal rights were violated."

Anonymous said...

"I called an attorney friend on the way home from the police station, and while I believe they acted improperly -- especially calling Mark Marshall to have him deliver their message while I was in the midst of interviewing him -- no, I don't think my legal rights were violated."

No, you didn't say he/she said your rights were not violated, but the excepionally strong implication is there nonetheless. I think your opinion was formulated based on the discussion with that lawyer, therefore his insights were implicit in your statement.

Anonymous said...

The police believed that Joan was a witness who may be able to identify "suspects" in some photos taken at the "scene of the crime". Why was it wrong for the police to question a witness? Is it because she's a journalist?

Anonymous said...

unitemerde, are you seriously suggesting that Joan was illegally seized under the 4th Amendment? Can you name one case anywhere in the history of the US that would support such an assertion? You can't. Because there are none.

letatsunitemerde said...

"No, you didn't say he/she said your rights were not violated, but the excepionally strong implication is there nonetheless. I think your opinion was formulated based on the discussion with that lawyer, therefore his insights were implicit in your statement."

Who are you, anon? A cop? Or you got something to worry about? Maybe huh. Jeez already- get off it. Unless this is a pre-empted deposition?????

Itʻs the manner in which it was conducted and Iʻm pretty sure whatever continues via Joan and her situation, it will become attorney-client privilege.

The fish are in the ocean, you might want to continue your expedition there.

Katy Rose said...

Yes, it's because she's a journalist.

And in looking over the discussion here, it's obvious that there is at least one person commenting who is trying to draw the discussin away from the substance of Joan's arguments about principle and into a trivial debate about who said what was legal or illegal.

Trifling!

Anonymous said...

Being a journalist in this situation may (or may not) provide some protection from revealing sources of info for a blog entry. I'm unsure if bloggers are protected as yet. It would be different if she used those sources to write a newspaper article.

However, it appears from what Joan said that the police were inquiring after the identties of people she saw at "the scene of the crime"...not people she interviewed as sources for any article. Therefore, no journalistic protection, if available, would apply.

As you can tell, I'm more a letter of the law guy with a fair amount of legal education short of being a practicing lawyer. My leanings are heavily weighted against leftist radicals, peacable or not.

letatsunitemerde said...

Although itʻs not for me to decide but that last blog just demonstrated some of the sickness running through society...a feeder.
I donʻt think this blog is productive anymore because stuff is starting to crawl out from under rocks.

Oh by the way, this last crawler doesnʻt know what heʻs talking about: no wonder .."short of being a practicing lawyer.."

Andy Parx said...

I shouldn’t really comment- and this will be my only one- because it only encourages you trolls but you anonymous ignoramuses are too much. The incident is a gross violation of the new Hawaii shield law which des protect bloggers who do reporting from exactly this kind of police/prosecutorial activity. And it protects all material published and unpublished..

Journalists are not arms of the police. When asked even TGI told the police where to go with their requests, although Adam Harju will not “comment at this time” as I reported yesterday

Just the methodology of the interrogation breaks a long list of policies and regulations of all the PD’s I know of, not the least of which is failing to have a female officer present- something which is taught to all police recruits on day one.

I have requested an investigation and am awaiting comment from the chief or other department personnel. I wrote about it all extensively yesterday if anyone wants factual material not just conjecture from armchair a-holes

http://parxnewsdaily.blogspot.com/2008/09/intimidation-of-invective-incisors.html

Anonymous said...

Speaking of "conjecture from armchair a-holes," the shield law in no way prevents police from asking any journalist any question whatsoever. The shield law says journalist cannot be REQUIRED to disclose sources or unpublished info.

Anonymous said...

US Supreme Court case law, Terry v Ohio states "whenever a police officer accosts an individual and restrains his freedom to walk away, he has 'seized' that person.". Seizure through intimadation is a Fourth Amendment Rights violation under the US Constitution. How can the seizure be legal in Joan's case?

Anonymous said...

"How can the seizure be legal in Joan's case?"

Because there was no seizure. In a Terry search, the person is "seized" because they are not free to leave. Joan was was not detained. She was asked if she would come answer some questions. She consented. She was free to leave at any time. Now if she had asked to leave and was prevented, then there would have been a seizure.

Anonymous said...

Now if she had asked to leave and was prevented, then there would have been a seizure.

An argument will not be won by either side. Unless you are a judge and rules in this case, your opinion will be respected as well as all other learned person in this blog. If you are an attorney or an experience law enforcement officer, you should know better. If not, it shows.

Anonymous said...

U.S. Supreme Court case Yarborough v. Alvarado. Investigating officer asks 17 year old youth to come to station house and answer some questions about a murder. Officer questions youth for two hours in small office behind closed door with only the two of them present. Youth confesses to involvement in the crime. Supreme Court rules there was no seizure, youth was there voluntarily, and youth's statements were admissible in court despite his having not been mirandized.

Argument won. Case closed. G'nite drive safely.

Anonymous said...

Oregon v. Mathiason. US Supreme Court. Officer asks burglary suspect to come to station house and answer some questions. Officer and suspect met alone behind closed doors in an office. officer told defendant he wanted to talk to him about a burglary, and that his truthfulness would possibly be considered by the district attorney or judge. The officer further advised that the police believed defendant was involved in the burglary and falsely stated that defendant's fingerprints were found at the scene. The defendant sat for a few minutes and then said he had taken the property.

Supreme Court ruled defendant was not in custody but was instead there voluntarily.

Anonymous said...

As I said, no one wins an argument unless you are the judge in a final appeal. I guess you are not one of the learned ones on this blog. Case cannot be closed with your opinion or mine. We are only submitting comments with our views.

Anonymous said...

And, you really sound like one of the "Old Guard" at the police department. Are you sure you are not the one who sent Ed Coll that email which was posted earlier on this blog?

Anonymous said...

Ah, but any good lawyer will tell you that cases should not be opened with a prepondrence of case law working against you.

Unless you like flushing money down a toilet, that is.

Anonymous said...

This is what it must be like in law school after class with the students gathered in the bar arguing the finer points and learning what is and is not appropaiate interpretations of statutes.

A lawyer friend of mine says the 3 years of law school are broken up as: first year they scare you to death, second year they work you to death, third year they bore you to death.

Anonymous said...

If someone ran into a bank, gunned down a teller killing her, took several thousand dollars and ran from the bank, you COULD say no one wins the argument over whether the law was broken except for the judge in a final appeal, but most of us could look at the facts and arrive at a pretty good commonsensical conclusion.

And yes, I am the cop who send Ed Coll that email. (Just kidding).

Anonymous said...

The Law is for protection of the people.

Rules are rules and never mind the cost.

Wonder who those lawman were protecting

when they nailed the Savior to the cross.

- Kris Kristofferson

Anonymous said...

"If someone ran into a bank, gunned down a teller killing her, took several thousand dollars and ran from the bank, you COULD say no one wins the argument over whether the law was broken except for the judge in a final appeal, but most of us could look at the facts and arrive at a pretty good commonsensical conclusion THAT WHOEVER WROTE THIS PLACING A FEMALE IN THE ROLE OF DEAD TELLER (without cause) could be called a sexist or more alarmingly a misogynist. Why is the robber/killer on trial portrayed as "someone" and the teller as "her"?

Given the past behavior of some of KPD's finest I understand why Joan was fearful. Hopefully Anon is just kidding about being a cop.

Anonymous said...

"WHOEVER WROTE THIS PLACING A FEMALE IN THE ROLE OF DEAD TELLER (without cause) could be called a sexist or more alarmingly a misogynist."


Oh brother.

Anonymous said...

That's because the vast majority of bank tellers are female. In my decades of going to a great number of banks in all sortsof places, 9 out of 10 tellers are women.

But you gotta love the paranoid uper-politically-correct fringe.

Anonymous said...

I'm the one who wrote the thing about the female bank teller and, actually, I'm so whipped by the politically correct stick and my liberal arts education that any time a pronoun is called for I instinctively reach for the feminine pronoun. See where political correctness gets you.

Anonymous said...

Well I believe the vast majority of bank robbers and murders are male, but yet the asexual "someone" was chosen for that role. Such unthinking stereotypical usage of language repeated like a mantra socializes females to assume they can become only bank tellers and they may overlook a more economically enriching career as a bank robber or bank president.

Katy Rose said...

What I find so funny about the way conservatives co-opted the term "politically correct" is that up until the early nineties it was a term we used on the left to make fun of ourselves when we took ourselves too seriously. Then the conservatives discovered the term and started tossing it around incessantly like a bunch of crazed hyenas around a carcass.

Now it's being used to discredit any kind of simple, inclusive common courtesy. I guess conservatives just prefer obnoxious, rude and undignified social behavior.

Anonymous said...

I instinctively reach for the feminine pronoun. See where political correctness gets you.

Your sexest excuse is far from believable.

Katy Rose said...

Anon sept 9 12:54:

Apart from some of the questionable claims about cop-killing, I don't dispute that some radical left groups have engaged in armed resistance in the US. I've read history. However, as I stated, NONE of that has remotely approached the level of violence engaged by the state. This doesn't mean it's right or wrong, just a matter of keeping things in perspective.

It's actually quite interesting to listen to the words of some of those 60's and 70's radicals reflecting back on that era. If one is not attached to a reactionary view, one can hear some very nuanced observations from those who were directly involved in formations which adopted armed struggle as a tactic.

I recommend the videos on freedomarchives.org for anyone interested in learning more.