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Occupy Richmond Evicted by City. Now What?

News reports say that around 1:00 AM this morning (Halloween!) the city decided to evict the Occupy Richmond group from Kanawha Plaza. Several – the number given is between 12 and 15 – refused to leave and were arrested. The majority obeyed the command to leave.

City Police along with State Police conducted the raid. Bulldozers moved in to clear the debris and reportedly, a fence is being erected.

What got Mayor Jones in trouble was, first and foremost, a failure to do his job and enforce the law. As I reported on Friday, the group involved with Occupy Richmond was attempting to obtain a permit. However, according to individuals participating in the event, the tents were erected after the police gave their permission.

One week before the start of the occupation, the point of contact became Captain Smith of the Special Events Unit of the Richmond Police Department. He was willing to issue special permits (ones specific to this event). He stated he was willing to allow the camping and other activities listed in the above article. He was the one that ordered the port-a-potties (as the movement was only planning on sawdust buckets with a pull curtain system until port-a-potty money materialized through participant donations) and trash removal (though the movement already had a sanitation committee, willing to bring in their own cans and making trips to proper dumping locations).

Now it appears that there is a complete breakdown of command and control at the City of Richmond. Mixed signals from the mayor, permission to camp from police and a general disregard for the law at City Hall forced an ugly scene in the middle of the night. Obviously, there were no witnesses outside of the police and the Occupiers, but there have been no reports of violence like we have seen at other Occupy sites.

Good for those who left when told to leave. And for those who refused a police order to vacate, it is difficult to understand exactly what you hope to prove by having a police record. You just made it that much harder to get a job and in one stupid act of defiance lowered your chances to close any gap in earnings with the people you rally against.

Now the Occupy Richmond group has two options. Go home satisfied that you made a statement, or escalate. The latter option will lead to violence and more arrests.

Some with the movement believe that this will bring in more people and help the movement grow. I agree. But the ones that come in at this point are the Progressives, the Unions, the SEIU and ACORN remnants. These are the ones that have taken over other movements and have led to violence. Now is the time that the radical elements seize control. They need a lot of useful idiots. And you now have to decide if you will join the violence or get back to work or school or whatever you were doing before you went camping.

The Mayor finally did his job last night. The rules must be enforced uniformly. Richmond’s Progressive Mayor was slow to act because he was hoping that the Progressives could benefit politically from Occupy Richmond. This blog was not a lone voice calling for Young’s resignation. (And we still do!)

What most will see as the outcome of the Occupy Richmond movement is a Mayor willing to ignore his duties for political gain, and when the heat got too hot, he did what any Progressive will do. Cave in.

And for the general public, reports that a fence is being erected to keep everyone out is the only thing that the Occupy movement accomplished.

More government control and a loss of the freedom to enjoy a public park paid for with tax dollars.

Protests and demonstrations are protected free speech. And should be. But there are laws that are in place which everyone must follow. The TEA Party understands that. Your right to free speech should not cost others their treasure. When a permit is applied for and granted, the purpose is to make sure the group desiring to use a public space makes adequate and reasonable preparations for the event.

Camping is not allowed. What the mayor finally did should have been done on the first night. He allowed politics to interfere with his judgement.

He should not make exceptions for the TEA Party, nor should he for those with whom he is politically aligned.

About Tom White

Tom is a US Navy Veteran, owns an Insurance Agency and is currently an IT Manager for a Virginia Distributor. He has been published in American Thinker, currently writes for the Richmond Examiner as well as Virginia Right! Blog. Tom lives in Hanover County, Va and is involved in politics at every level and is a Recovering Republican who has finally had enough of the War on Conservatives in progress with the Leadership of the GOP on a National Level.

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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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