Sixty-Five Days and Counting...

Comments

1
While those amendments are sources of certain rights, those rights do not include the right to remain silent before a grand jury. There is no such right.

This is in no way meant to detract from the courageous stand taken by these grand jury protesters. Just don't want anyone out there to get the idea that this is a valid strategy that can or should get you out of jail.
2
If we're lucky, he'll never break, and he'll never see the light of day again.
3
P: Do you intend to answer “ I am exercising my state and federal constitutional rights including the 1st, 4th and 5th amendments.” to all questions?

M: I am exercising my state and federal constitutional rights including the 1st, 4th and 5th amendments.


What a fucking child.
4
I think its pretty brave not to answer. Silence is a right in a way too. I hope he makes it through this and they either let him go or find something they can actually charge him with using normal channels instead of a politruk affair as this
5
@3 Yup.
6
The fact that a number of people who seem to be following the posts regarding the continued political repression targeting anarchists and fail to grasp the underlying meaning of why this is so important is frightening. The fact is that whether or not you agree with Anarchism this is a terrible situation that affects every citizen of the united states. This sets a precedent that simply reading about or believing in something can bring you in front of a grand jury and have you imprisoned for the duration of that jury which is the absoulute antithesis of "liberty and justice for all". Should you be questioned and imprisoned for enjoying chocolate ice cream over vanilla? Than why can you be imprisoned for subscribing to a political ideology simply because it's different from the prevailing attitude held by the majority and specifically by the people who hold power?
7
@4 Or he could just testify. They are not interested in charging him as aside form refusing to testify it does not appear that he has committed a crime and they have given him immunity regardless. They are however interested in arresting the fuckers that trashed downtown and rightly so. He has information about that and therefor is being required to provide testimony.

You might have more sympathies with these folks than with other criminals, but without the ability to compel testimony we could not have a functioning justice system.
8
@4 People being jailed for refusing to give testimony is the norm in the American legal system. There are certain circumstances under which a person has the right to remain silent, but for the most part you can either talk or be locked up.
9
6, He's not being imprisoned for his beliefs. He being imprisoned because he's refusing to testify. None of the Constitutional amendments cited allow for refusal of type of testimony being requested. The "no snitching" culture may be hip, but hip won't keep you out of jail if you try it with a grand jury.
10
Seriously, I've been converted. Liberal fascists DO exists. Thanks, you guys are right on track to enable fascism.
11
The grand jury isn't simply targetting the folks who fought back on Mayday - they're also clearly fishing for general information about radicals (specifically anarchists). Swat teams are raiding people's homes for "black clothing and anarchist literature," and because of this, the grand jury resistors aren't simply taking an incredibly brave stand for those who fought on Mayday, but for all of us who may have ever read a "dangerous" book or owned "radical" literature.
12
@1, One's right to avoid self-incrimination under the 5th amendment can be invoked during GJ questioning. However, it cannot be invoked to avoid incriminating another.

The 1st and 4th amendment are not being used in the correct context though.
13
hopefull they trash capitol hill next. those uptight assholes deserve some shattered glass to wake them up. the rest of us are jobless or struggling because of this recession and people get upset about some broken windows at some chain stores downtown??
14
@13 - How are those two things related?
15
Liberal fascism, it just occurred to me, is the idea that its okay to fight for the constitutional right of Nazis to exercise free speech and also to freak out and actively condemn people who smash corporate windows. Something doesn't add up there.
16
@15,

When Nazis start smashing shit up, I'll be the first in line to demand that they be arrested and prosecuted.
17
Great, good for you, proud of you. But Nazis like to attack immigrants, want to kill a lot of people, and would probably smash a synagogue. Anarchists like to smash bank windows and Niketown windows and I'm sure you're gonna say they are the same as the Nazis. That's my point.
18
@17,

No, I don't think anarchists are the same as Nazis. I challenge you to find anyone who thinks that.

Anarchists have the same right to free speech as anyone else. If you demonstrate peacefully, you'll have broken no laws. And, if you're arrested anyway, any number of people here and civil liberties groups such as the ACLU will vociferously fight for your right to speak out.

When Nazis demonstrate and are not arrested, such as in Skokie, Illinois, which is what I presume you're referring to, it's when they follow the law and neither hurt individuals nor destroy property.

The ultimate irony here is that hate groups have learned over the years to abide by the law to the letter during their demonstrations so the feds have no reason or justification to raid and shut down their operations and hold their members for grand jury investigations. It seems like anarchists could learn a thing or two from them.
19
@11 Perhaps because the people who engaged in the criminal activity at issue here did so wearing black clothing? And it wasn't literature, but materials, like journals or other things that might be evidence.

No one gives that much of a shit about a bunch of dumb kids playing revolutionaries to concoct this. But smashing up downtown and scaring a bunch of people is a serious crime and the people who did that should be arrested and charged.

20
@18 - Whoa, I think you just landed the first ever reverse-Godwin. I believe that means the comments MUST continue.
21
See? Anarchists and hate groups are equated in your mind. Liberal fascism FTW. Also, who got scared downtown?
22
Fnarf @2, the only light going out is the weak flame of your relevance.
23
@21 I'm not sure if the anarchists are a hate group, but they're a bunch of nitwits who need a good pepper spraying followed by a trip to the pokey.
24
@23 See, now you sound like a nazi
25
There is nothing remotely "nazi" about answering the questions of a grand jury.
26
@24 I'm a political moderate. Last week I voted for Obama. If I had to choose between the Black Blockers and some American version of the Golden Dawn, I'd choose the Golden Dawn. However, that is not a choice I would ever want to make.
27
I cant believe this is more true than I thought it would be.

Anyone else reading this? A liberal would choose nazis over anarchists.

Hello?
28
they're also clearly fishing for general information about radicals

Good!
29
First they came for the papers and the people who own them that the government labeled as anarchists but I didn't label myself a paper or an anarchist so I didn't speak up. If you think what's at stake in these proceedings is actually finding out who attacked a federal court house that's not what this investigation is about. Look at the questions. They're fishing. They see an opportunity to get people behind the stand they've been trying to get at for years and they think they have a solid case. I wouldn't hesitate to tell a grand jury I know my rights and go to jail for them. These people are national heroes for doing what they do. This should end here. The feds have nothing else. These people do their time and we all move on with our lives. They will never catch the big fish but that's the game they're playing, and they're willing to take down the small fish at the risk of losing the big fish. To cause intimidation and chaos. They'd be cute if it weren't for the total disregard of human rights.
30
A witness can refuse to answer questions posed by a grand jury only if the witness can claim a valid privilege as the basis for doing so. The Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination is a constitutional privilege and, as such, can be invoked by a grand jury witness, as long as the requirements for invoking it (i.e., that answering the question would "incriminate" the person, in that the answer would provide the government with evidence it can use to prosecute that person for crimes). The government can deprive someone of their ability to take the 5th if the government gives the person immunity. The premise is that the 5th amendment privilege protects you from having to say things that can be used to convict you of a crime; if the government promises not to use what you say or anything derived from what you say against you (e.g., gives you immunity), then you can be forced to answer because forcing you to do so does not violate what the intent of the 5th amendment .