Aubrey Freedman and I, along with Nate from the Ron Paul/C4L-SF group attended the "town hall" event with congresswoman Jackie Speier today at the Methodist Church near SF State University on gun control and other topics. There were maybe 250 people or so present; the event went surprisingly calmly, and wasn't too much of a dog-and-pony show as such things go, with a good amount of time devoted to questions from the audience, both read by the congresswoman's staff from cards that people filled out, and during the last 45 minutes or so, directly via open mic.
I was the first person to speak, and asked Ms. Speier about the unconstitutional power being claimed by Obama (as with Bush before him) and now affirmed by Congress in passing the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to arbitrarily kill anyone in the world including U.S. citizens without due process. I told her I feared we were slipping into a police state, and also mentioned this scary news item -- http://lewrockwell.com/slavo/slavo137.html . Speier was polite in her response, and had said in other remarks that she does not favor detaining people without filing charges against them, but that was about the end of the good news on that front. In direct response to me, she cited Osama bin Laden and asked if he should have been brought back to the U.S. for trial, making a few other remarks in that vein suggesting that she does not get it. She said nothing about the targeting of U.S. civilians -- when I attempted a quick follow-up asking that question, the police officer who insisted on holding the microphone for me told me I'd already asked my question -- and nothing in response to my mention of the scary news about military leaders reportedly being removed from their posts who do not support firing on U.S. civilians.
Another audience member later asked a question in which he noted that Speier had voted for the NDAA; her excuse was that she was able to get some amendments attached to the bill that she wanted, something to do with saving money on a warship, I think getting benefits for a slighted category of elderly veterans or something like that, I forget. There were a number of good audience questions mentioning the NDAA, drone attacks, how firearms can save lives, etc.
Aubrey, who asked the final question, did elicit one very positive response from her. His query was about the Obama administration's targeting medical cannabis dispensaries in violation of his promise. In response she talked about the administration's policy, but when Aubrey asked "but how do YOU feel?" she said that she supports legalizing drugs.
There were some other pro-RKBA folks present besides the three of us, notably at least three or so from a San Mateo County(?) group called My Liberty that I had not heard of before, possibly Tea Party oriented. I think we were probably outnumbered by folks favoring civilian disarmament (aka gun control) measures, but they did not seem to be as passionate for their point of view. I made a large banner reading GUN CONTROL KILLS / SEE "INNOCENTS BETRAYED"*, which Nate and I held on the sidewalk outside the building as people were leaving. Most people seemed to ignore it as best they could, but we got a positive feedback from a few folks and verbally hostile reactions from two that I noticed, including a woman wearing a t-shirt for the Brady Campaign (formerly Handgun Control Inc.) who said we had blood on our hands, to which I responded she had blood on hers if she supports gun control.
Love & Liberty,
((( starchild )))
*A reference to this excellent documentary film -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7vNj2sb_00 . I tried to verbally tell people they could watch it free on YouTube as they walked by.