Mayor Apologizes for Pepper Spraying of Peaceful Protesters

Comments

1
Whoever posted that link last night to write the mayor has done thier fellow citizens some great service. I clicked and wrote a long carefully worded statement of my own expressing my dissapointment ond concern over what apears to be a paramilitary police force operating with impunity on this Mayo'sr watch.
2
you know mayor mcginn, it might have been a good idea to get out in front of these issues w/ the police, rather than waiting for an incident.
3
Soooo...the police who used pepper spray weren't following procedure, and if a commander had been there he or she would have instructed the police to NOT use pepper spray? Is that what he's saying? And we're supposed to believe him?
4
I'm reminded of a James Brown song.

http://youtu.be/ZJH7X5LYm2g
5
In forthcoming encounters, both police and protestors will be advised to stay on their bicycles at all times.
6
Reasons for apologizing - it went viral in MSM in NY, DC, and around the world.

Actions speak louder than words, like 18 city conference calls and DEA raids under the auspices of "counter-terrorism" while Banksters roam free.

And the Banksters even get a state subsidy - which they refuse to cut.
7
"I share the message and values of the Occupy Seattle movement, and want to work with them and others to meet our goals of protecting free speech rights, protecting public safety of protesters and the public, and protecting other legitimate public and private uses of property."

Just not in that order.
8
Source: Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission
Campaign contributions data:

2010 Election Cycle
Michael McGinn (Office Funds) - Monetary Contributions
Dorli Rainey
Seattle, WA None
Retired $250.00
1/7/2010

2009 Election Cycle
Mike McGinn (Mayor) - Monetary Contributions

DORLI RAINEY
Seattle, WA
$100.00
6/18/2009

DORLI RAINEY
Seattle, WA
RETIRED $100.00
7/16/2009

DORLI RAINEY
Seattle, WA
RETIRED $50.00
9/25/2009

DORLI RAINEY
Seattle, WA
RETIRED $100.00
7/31/2009

DORLI RAINEY
Seattle, WA
RETIRED $350.00
9/3/2009
9
Does "work with us" mean "please shut up, go away, and stop embarrassing me"? Because that's what it sounds like.
10
Fuck McGinn and the SPD. They should all rot in hell.
11
Mayor, your prior inaction says more than this note will ever say. You're allowing peaceful protesters to be intimidated and violently removed from their legal gathering. You needed to be a leader, not a whimpering apologist. You have disappointed your citizens with this action.
12
How about just staying out of the fucking street? You can make your point without annoying people just going about their day.
13
The best video I've seen of the pepper spray is here. http://bit.ly/ucOvD0 via @AnseI.

In it you can see the extent of the spraying. It was used to create a cloud of spray to attack not any individual but the whole group. It was used like tear gas as a crowd control measure. It is not true that is was not their preferred outcome. Watching the video you will see them continue to spray people as they shout to curse at the police for pepper spraying them when they are up on the sidewalk.
14
The best video I've seen of the pepper spray is here. http://bit.ly/ucOvD0 via @AnseI.

In it you can see the extent of the spraying. It was used to create a cloud of spray to attack not any individual but the whole group. It was used like tear gas as a crowd control measure. It is not true that is was not their preferred outcome. Watching the video you will see them continue to spray people as they shout to curse at the police for pepper spraying them when they are up on the sidewalk.
15
The best video I've seen of the pepper spray is here. http://bit.ly/ucOvD0 via @AnseI.

In it you can see the extent of the spraying. It was used to create a cloud of spray to attack not any individual but the whole group. It was used like tear gas as a crowd control measure. It is not true that is was not their preferred outcome. Watching the video you will see them continue to spray people as they shout to curse at the police for pepper spraying them when they are up on the sidewalk.
16
@12 They were sprayed while on the sidewalk, after they'd been cleared from the street.

FUck SPD, fuck McGinn, I now have zero faith in either of them.
17
I usually give the cops a bit of leeway as it's a pretty shit job and we do need someone to do the policing, but this is getting ridiculous...Diaz should be fired today and the rest of the SPD needs some serious house cleaning.
How did we wind up with a police force that is so diametrically opposed to the city it is supposed to serve and protect?
18
@16 I do agree on fuck McGinn and partly on fuck SPD.
19
"If the infrastructure of a police state is created, it's only a matter of time before those aggressive powers are used."
--Heather "Digby" Parton

Militarizing the Police: How the Drug Wa…

20
When McGinn spoke to Dorli Rainey he should have informed her of her right to file a complaint against the SPD, and, since he knows her personally, he should have offered to personally pay for her lawyer. Or at least give her the $950 in campaign contributions she gave to him.

Link for the Office of Professional Accountability:
http://www.seattle.gov/police/OPA/defaul…
21
It does seem that Diaz has knawed his way off the leash
22
It's a gruesome picture, I'm really not that bad looking
-- The Unsinkable Dorli Rainey, in AP interview today.
23
Pepper spraying a pregnant woman, and elderly woman, and a priest with the brave cops in full riot gear against these dangerous people. Good grief! We need a mayorectomy!
24
@20: So is $950 what it costs to actually have the mayor take your legitimate complaint of police misconduct seriously. Seems pretty reasonable.
25
Pepper spraying a pregnant woman, and elderly woman, and a priest, with the brave cops in full riot gear against these dangerous people. Good grief! We need a mayorectomy!
26
Welcome to the Paul Schell club, Mayor!
27
If pepper spraying haphazardly into a crowd of peaceful protesters wasn't their preferred outcome, then why did they do it with smiles on their faces?

If the mayor wants to work with Occupy, he needs to call off the dogs. Seriously.
28
@12: Look up "civil disobedience."
29
McGinn could order them tonight to stop pepper spraying. Will he?
30
@28 Civil Disobedience is generally targeted at the injustice being fought e.g. sit ins, or at least an unfriendly jurisdiction like the south, not just people trying to get home.

You want to occupy houses that are or have been foreclosed or block some bond traders that would at least be on point.
31
Seattle was originally singled out for its non participation in the raid; however, this is much worse...since the people being sprayed, as seen in the video were committing no crime or threatening action at all!
33
The best way to avoid being pepper sprayed is to avoid being in a situation where you might get pepper sprayed. I was at home all night last night and I did not get pepper sprayed.
34
#33

And the people who were pepper sprayed were standing on a sidewalk.

How soon before you get pepper sprayed in your living room?

I'm a fan of not tugging on Supermans cape or spitting in the wind...but that is not what is happening here!
35
Look at it this way, as infuriating as that was, the cops seem to be making slim progress as they did not shoot anyone within 4 seconds of getting out of their pig car.
36

I really wish they'd stay out of the intersections.

You know, if the Seattle Commons had been approved, can you imagine what a cool place that would've been for peaceful assembly?
But no.............
37
@33 - Well, congratulations. Just stay in your comfy little bed, precious flower.
38
I've never really hated the McGinn, until now I've always just thought my cat had a better developed intellect. After these most recent events I can genuinely say I revile him not because he is ineffective, or because his policy vision is myopic but because he's an impotent leader in addition to all of these other things. Thank goddess he'll be gone after this term.
39
I'm waiting for the Justice Department to pepper spray some of the criminals on Wall Street.
40
Made the Times' blog: http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/11…

McGinn has had some trouble keeping the SPD and Diaz reigned in since this whole Occupy movement hit Seattle's streets. This is best exemplified by his three points of: 1) calling for a reviewing of the "deployment of pepper spray"; 2) ensuring commanders are "on the ground"; and 3) making sure there are "appropriate levels of police resources at protest events"

First off, pepper spray has been deployed repeatedly on protestors since Nov. 2. Secondly, I truly do believe the problem here isn't the lack of chain-of-command. Lastly, the SPD has been out in force for Occupy since (nearly) day one.

The time for reviewing use of pepper spray should have happened a while back. You okay pepper spray and people are going to get sprayed, people are going to get pissed, and eventually something stupid is going to happen, national/international media is going to pick it up, and your going to make your city look like shit [insert a Perry "oops" here].

The fact that McGinn might be suggesting that a show of force last night, and the nights before, isn't a tactical move by the SPD from the top down, but rather a few loose trigger fingers by beat cops, is simply ... well, pathetic.

If anything, there are too many SPD earning overtime here playing with protestors. Suggesting that what we need is more SPD "resources" at "protest events" is basically telling me that McGinn is a fucking moron. And I was a moron for voting for him.

Show some fucking leadership in a time of crisis and get a clue about Diaz, McGinn. Fighting fire with fire is a waste. Instead, invest in a SPD community liaison officer or two. Maybe they could even help you with "communication" while they're at it.
41
I was at work and didn't get pepper sprayed. Imagine that.
42
All during the Bush Administration I do not remember one incident of official force being used against peaceful protestors.

This is only happen during the Democrat Obama administration coordinated between mostly urban Democrat mayors!!

The Koch Bros dont do these things....Democrats do!
43
Civil disobedience is black people sitting at a whites only lunch counter, not people blocking the streets, preventing other 99 percenters from getting home. Blocking the streets and sidewalks is counterproductive to the cause, like if another black person forced a protester away from the lunch counter.

Pepper spray was heavy handed, but the tactics being used by the OWS are turning people off to your message.
44
Arm someone with a weapon and it is a certainty that they will find a need to use it. This is the problem with non-lethal weapons. That and the fact that if you tell someone that they have authority over someone else it is human nature for them to escalate violence until they succeed in asserting their dominance. It's primal.

Ban non-lethal weapons. Teach police to walk away most of the time, or better yet just don't even show up.
45
44, blocking a street is a matter for the police. It's not just stopping other innocent 99% from getting home. It's a public safety issue as well. Suppose a fire truck or ambulance needed to get through. Backing up traffic is dangerous.

As for pepper spray, it's very uncomfortable, (part of my military training included experiencing a tear gas chamber, much worse than a spice aerosol.) and was probably too much for what was going on in this case, but it's better than if they broke out their clubs. Being overly dramatic about it (you're hardly living the plight of say, Libyan rebels who had an army firing live rounds and bombs at them.) I'm for the protests, but it's stupid for the protesters to alienate others in the 99%.
46
@45
Once, back in the eighties, I was stuck in my car while an AIDS march that stretched for miles blocked my passage to work. It was a Saturday and I was headed to my job at a pharmaceutical company where I worked on HIV protease. So I get that we sometimes alienate people with minor inconveniences. But adults should be able to cope with minor inconveniences.

OWS isn't going to be effective unless it gets in people's way. The worst thing that could happen for them is if the cops and the media ignored them.

And I haven't heard of a single ambulance not getting where it's going because of OWS.
47
46, if your home is burning down, is it a minor inconvenience that the fire truck can't get through? You or someone you love having a medical emergency should just suck it up when protesters backed up traffic? Just because it didn't happen with that situation doesn't mean it won't in the future. I work in healthcare, people die everyday due to delay of care. For the most part, the protesters haven't been blocking the roads. Police need to prevent such dangerous acts.

The dangers aside, you thinking that the rest of the 99% should just bend to your will is one, narcissistic, and two counterproductive. You lose the support of the very people you claim to care about. You're basically saying, "Look at me!", rather than, "Listen to my message!" We average joe working folks will just stop listening. It just starts to look like attention whores having a tantrum.
48
@43, Putting your complaint in historical perspective: "Civil rights protesters should not inconvenience people by refusing to move to the back of the bus. It just delays our transportation and is counterproductive to the cause."
"As for police dogs biting protesters, it's very uncomfortable (but I have a dog at home so I don't see the big deal) and it's better than machine gunning down the entire crowd."
49
Fairly soon, I think we are probably going to have to start lobbying the governor to send in the national guard to clean up this mess. If McGinn refuses to use his power to act in the interest of the greater good of this city, and continues to kowtow to a pack of ultra left lunatics, then we need to go over his head.

Today I wrote every member of the city council and the mayor's office saying as much. It's time for this bullshit to end.
50
@48, the civil rights protesters were actually protesting how they were treated on buses, so it made sense to protest on buses. If Occupy were blocking access to a bank, or state tax offices, or IRS offices, something where it had something to do with their complaints, it would make sense. Just blocking the street to block the street doesn't convey a message, and it does turn people off.
51
@50 How do you propose OWS protest? It's not likethey can do a sit-in on an wire transfer, a Swiss bank account, or a bank in Vanuatu.
52
Rob, they were on the sidewalk. Not blocking the street.
53
@49 Good Gods Man! The National Guard? Have you no decency? This is clearly a job for the Air Force. Carpet bomb the lot of them I say!
54
@42: Does being that stupid cause physical pain?
55
The police officers who used pepper spray against peaceful protesters should be disciplined by being pepper sprayed themselves.