George Washington University, Washington D.C., February 15, 2011.
“Just minutes after Secretary Clinton began a speech lauding freedom of the internet, two security personnel forcefully removed an audience member wearing a Veterans For Peace t-shirt who had silently stood and turned his back to her. Ray McGovern, a 71-year old veteran, and former CIA analyst was violently grabbed and forcibly removed from the auditorium in direct view of Mrs. Clinton.
According to Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, attorney with the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund, ‘For this peaceful expression of dissent, he ended up bruised, bloodied, arrested, and jailed. Secretary Clinton never paused, continuing her speech lecturing other countries about the need to allow freedom of expression and dissent, while Mr. McGovern was hauled out in front of her."
Ray McGovern is one of my heroes. He is a brave man of conscience. It appears that his meek “protest” was one of the least offensive, non-disruptive ones imaginable. Had I been there I would have been tempted to throw a shoe at the lying hypocrite, Clinton.
His treatment again brings to mind a fact I was recently reminded of by Derrick Jensen:
“Civilization is based on a clearly defined and widely accepted yet often unarticulated hierarchy. Violence done by those higher on the hierarchy to those lower is nearly always invisible, that is, unnoticed. When it is noticed, it is fully rationalized. Violence done by those lower on the hierarchy to those higher is unthinkable, and when it does occur is regarded with shock, horror, and the fetishization of the victims.”
The amazing thing about the violence that was done to McGovern by the security agents was its invisibility. No one seemed to acknowledge the event—either Clinton or any other members of the assembled press and public present. Clinton did not miss a beat as a man was beaten to the ground, directly in her line of sight, in what was a clear case of violent overreaction on the part of security personnel.
The irony was that, shortly before McGovern stood up and turned his back on the Sec., she was condemning the overreaction of security forces in Iran and Egypt during the recent demonstrations. If a person of conscience merely stands in silent rebuke of a murdering Sec. State with the blood of hundreds staining her well-manicured nails, he will be beaten, arrested and actually charged with disorderly conduct.
In the kingdom of a lawless Amerika, the only form of conduct that is now morally possible by the few remaining with a functioning moral compass is the disorderly kind. I think we have finally reached the stage in this fiscally and morally bankrupt, brutal land where we need to begin moving the violence upstream.
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