I was waiting for the bus home from downtown tonight when some anarchists made a pitch for public attention. As I watched, some people hung a banner from a parking structure across the street. The banner said something like “Grand Juries are Witch Trials” with the circled “A” symbol. Someone tossed a smoke bomb on the street by the curb that noiselessly emitted some blue smoke. A bunch of leaflets fluttered through the air.
That’s about it. They garnered some attention from those of us who were waiting for a bus. We were a captive audience. Within a few minutes the sign had been taken down and the leaflets were scattered all over. Some cops appeared, took some pictures of the burned out smoke device and left.
A young guy standing next to me took photos of the brief event and then rode away on a bike. I think he was an anarchist. Do anarchists have jobs and buy cameras?
I picked up a leaflet and the anarchists are complaining about FBI raids on the homes of anarchists in Portland, Seattle, and Olympia. Several people were ordered to appear at a grand jury. Grand juries occur in private, with 16 to 23 jurors and no defense lawyers. No judge. A prosecutor.
The leaflet didn’t mention that a grand jury cannot determine guilt or innocence, but only whether there is enough evidence for charges to be filed. According to Wikipedia, however, the U.S. is the only nation that uses grand juries. Most have moved on to some other sort of evidentiary hearing. Seems like they ought to be public. Seems like there ought to be a right to have a representative.
I personally don’t have enough information to make a call on whether anarchists are being unfairly harassed. I admit that I currently have a bias against anarchists because (1) as far as I can tell they have no coherent plan for improving the community and (2) the idiots who broke a bunch of windows downtown on May 1 were allegedly anarchists.
Summary: I’m suspicious of both grand juries and anarchists. Destroy. Destroy.