Does chanting at politician's speech equal a felony?
In this case four Occupy San Diego protestors were arrested after interrupting the mayor of that city's speech. I am not really that opposed to their arrest. In a public assembly one doesn't have an absolute right to yell a protest. It's a balancing act between freedom of speech and the right of those who put up the assembly, to give it to the audience who wants to hear it. If a judge I would probably dismiss the charges or give the smallest penalty possible.
But, these individuals are going to be charged with a felony, for conspiracy, because they recited the same chant. This is like the case of Muslim protestors who were charged with a felony for conspiracy charge for interrupting a speech, that happened last year.
It concerns me greatly, as it should anyone, when the government charges peaceful protestors with felonies for a protest. Heck, even a misdemeanor might be overkill. Felonies are really big deals. In most states you lose your right to vote, even for a time. You lose your right to bear arms. These aren't things to be taken lightly. Why any jury would return a guilty conviction over these chants, I have no idea. But than again, the government can always find yes men among the citizens.
Oh by the way, hit this link and ask yourself should this Canadian hoping to cross the border into the U.S. have been arrested? Should our Border Protection act as mini-dictators? After all, they are our employees.