In what many activists have been hoping to see for quite a while, it appears that some in the Occupy movement and the Tea Party have finally found a bit of common ground.
As Occupy Medford accurately summed up in their press release, published by OpEdNews, on February 12, 2012,
The indefinite detention clauses (sections 1021 and 1022) within this year’s National Defense Authorization Act (signed into law 31 December 2011) are a direct attack upon the civil rights of all Americans, and represent another step taken toward eroding the freedoms which lay at the foundation of our society.
The detention sections of the NDAA begin by “affirm[ing]” that the authority of the President under the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF), a joint resolution passed in the immediate aftermath of the September 11th 2001 attacks, includes the power to detain, via the Armed Forces, any person “who was part of or substantially supported al-Qaeda, the Taliban, or associated forces that are engaged in hostilities against the United States or its coalition partners,” and anyone who commits a “belligerent act” against the U.S. or its coalition allies in aid of such enemy forces, under the law of war, “without trial, until the end of the hostilities…”. The text also authorizes trial by military tribunal, or “transfer to the custody or control of the person’s country of origin,” or transfer to “any other foreign country, or any other foreign entity.”
After signing the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 into law, President Obama issued a statement on it that addressed “certain provisions that regulate the detention, interrogation, and prosecution of terrorism suspects.” In the statement Obama maintained that “the legislation does nothing more than confirm authorities that the Federal courts have recognized as lawful under the 2001 AUMF. I want to clarify that my Administration will not authorize the indefinite military detention without trial of American citizens.” The only provision from which U.S. citizens are exempted here is the “requirement” of military detention. For foreign nationals accused of being members of Al Qaeda, military detention is mandatory; for U.S. citizens, it is optional. This section does not exempt U.S citizens from the presidential power of detention [by the military OR civilian agencies such as the CIA/DHS/FBI etc.]: only from the requirement of military detention.
Due to its blatantly fascist and unconstitutional makeup, the NDAA has faced opposition from both the left and the right; Tea Partiers and Occupiers.
As a result, organizations in Southern Oregon – Occupy Medford, Occupy Southern Oregon, and WakeUp America Southern Oregon – put their differences aside, banded together, and held a joint demonstration on February 14, at Vogel Plaza in Medford, Oregon in order protest the NDAA and its destruction of the Constitution and basic human rights.
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In regards to the joint protest, Joseph Snook of WakeUp America Southern Oregon stated,
A group full of conservatives, Libertarians, and Tea-party members by the name of Wake Up America Southern Oregon is proud to unite with the Southern Oregon Occupy Movement to take a Bold Stand against the National Defense Authorization Act known as the NDAA. Further, it is time that ‘We the People’, all of us unite!
Likewise, a statement from the Emery Way Occupy read,
Occupy Ashland is standing with libertarians, progressives, conservatives and the Tea-Party alike to speak out against the attack against our civil rights which is the National Defense Authorization Act. In times such as these, when the injustices of a system and a government become too large to ignore, it is vital that we stand together not as members of a political party but as fellow citizens and human beings to defend our precious freedoms.
Reports have suggested that the protest rally was a successful one, bringing together Occupiers, Tea Partiers, Republicans, Democrats, Liberals, Conservatives, and Libertarians all under one banner to express their opposition to the NDAA and the ongoing destruction of civil liberties taking place in the United States.
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Brandon Turbeville is an author out of Mullins, South Carolina. He has a Bachelor’s Degree from Francis Marion University and is the author of three books, Codex Alimentarius — The End of Health Freedom, 7 Real Conspiracies, and Five Sense Solutions. Turbeville has published over one hundred articles dealing with a wide variety of subjects including health, economics, government corruption, and civil liberties. Brandon Turbeville is available for podcast, radio, and TV interviews. Please contact us at activistpost (at) gmail.com.