Sunday, July 10, 2016

What about my right to go on an expressway without people blocking my way?


We hear that President Obama is coming to Dallas, and that’s OK with me.
I would like to ask him a simple question: Mr. President, what about my rights to go on an expressway?  Why do I have to suffer because some groups want to make a point?
We saw on TV, and read later, that a Black Lives Matter crowd was blocking I-75 and the northbound side of I-85 in Atlanta.  Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed discouraged protesters but it had little impact, as far as I know.
As I understand it, we live in a country, and one of the few in the world, where peaceful protest is tolerated and the protesters protected.  However, we also live under the rule of law, and few elected officials seem willing to remind protesters of that.  Mayors and governors are showing the kind of cowardice that encourages, rather than discourages, this kind of illegal behavior.
Over in Oakland, we saw more than a respectful protest:
About 2,000 angry protestors marched through downtown Oakland, blocking traffic on Interstate 880 and pouring red paint on the front door of an Oakland police station in solidarity with two black men fatally shot by police officers this week in Louisiana and Minnesota.
Cars were backed up for hundreds of yards in both directions on the elevated downtown freeway after hundreds of protestors swarmed up the on-ramps around 8:45 p.m. and began dancing, playing music and spray-painting slogans on the pavement. 
Other protesters climbed to the top of a semitrailer that was stalled in the huge traffic jam.
“Burn it to the ground,” one protester wrote in black spray paint in the middle of the freeway.
Sorry, but that’s not civilized behavior, no matter how angry these protesters may be about this or that.  This is anarchy and chaos of the worst kind.  
At some point, President Obama must address this lack of respect for the law and the rights of others.   
He can start by reading how then-governor Reagan dealt with unruly protesters in California’s universities in the 1960s.  Next, he can speak from the Oval Office and call on Black Lives Matter to expand their objectives, from reckless attacks on the police to a concern for all lives.  He can also add that he is 100% behind local leaders who enforce the law against those who don’t respect it.
Again, I have a right to get on a highway and travel freely.  I don’t feel that my rights are being protected by a government that seems afraid of defending the rule of law.
Mr. President, it’s time to lead, not pander!
P.S. You can listen to my show (Canto Talk) and follow me on Twitter.

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