Senator Klobuchar Thanked and Challenged On Civil Rights

Occupy St. Paul had planned to deliver a protest letter to Senator Amy Klobuchar about her voting for NDAA (The National Defense Authorization Act). The plan was amended when they found out she was sponsoring a bill to remove some of the most egregious provisions of the act. They delivered a letter thanking he for her action on this new bill and asking for continued vigilance on civil rights.

The letter was delivered and the group went out side. A representative from the senator’s office came out and asked them to come to a meeting in the office conference room.

Erika Nelson, Deputy State Director met with the group and took copious notes for the senator. The group again thanked her for sponsoring a new bill that would remove some of the most objectionable provisions of NDAA, but expressed concerns that this might be a token effort destined to fail.

More civil rights limiting legislation in the works.

Individuals asked for help in stopping or at least slowing down, the increasing attacks against the Occupy movement and those exercising their right to protest government actions. Increased militarization of city police forces increases that concern.

An occupy member reported that a number of his friends were in sympathy with the actions but were afraid to participate because of fear of government reprisals.They asked for the Senator’s support.

They also proposed that she co-sponsor comprehensive legislation reaffirming civil liberties as granted by the Bill of Rights and to roll back the harmful positions of The Patriot Act. Scott Thompson, Occupy St. Paul, said, “If that legislation were proposed it would be met with intense and enthusiastic support from everyone in the Occupy groups as well as a lot of other Americans.

Another serious concern is the Enemy Belligerent Act sponsored by Senator Lieberman. The Enemy Belligerent Act grants “the president the power to order the arrest, interrogation, and imprisonment of anyone — including a U.S. citizen — indefinitely, on the sole suspicion that he or she is affiliated with terrorism, and on the president’s sole authority as commander in chief.” This means that the President could effectively revoke citizenship of anyone suspected of associating with terrorism related groups.

Bill Sorem

Bill Sorem is a longtime advertising professional who started with Campbell Mithun and ended up with his own agency. After a tour as a sailing fleet manager in the Virgin Islands he turned to database programming as an independent consultant. He has written sailing guides for the British Virgin Islands and Belize, and written for a number of blogs. In 2010, he volunteered as a citizen journalist with The UpTake and has stayed on as a video reporter.

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