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News ::
Protest = Terrorism? (english)
03 Apr 2003
Modified: 04:30:59 PM
New Oregon Law - Life For Protests That Block Traffic
On Monday, March 24, the Senate Judiciary Committee heard testimony on SB 742 which would create a very broadly defined crime of "terrorism" in Oregon with a punishment of life in prison. The bill would also open the door to widespread political surveillance as well as racial and ethnic profiling by requiring state and local police to ignore Oregon's "181" laws if investigating "terrorism"

More than 200 opponents of the bill showed up in Salem for the hearing and about 80 of those signed up to testify. No one signed up to testify in support of the bill, which was introduced by the Judiciary Committee Chair, Sen. John Minnis, R-Fairview. Sen. Minnis began the hearing by explaining that the original bill was drafted much more broadly than he had intended and, at his request, the Committee adopted narrowing amendments for the purposes of discussion.

Due to a lack of time, only nine people were permitted to testify. Susan Russell of the Oregon Criminal Defense Lawyers Association testified that even the amended bill was unconstitutionally overbroad. Oregon ACLU Executive Director, David Fidanque testified that both the original bill and the amendments invited the type of political spying abuses that were widespread during the civil rights movement and Vietnam War. Wednesday's Eugene Register-Guard included the editorial An Unnecessary Law, summing up the problems with the measure.

Senator Minnis has indicated that he will prepare another round of amendments and schedule the bill for another public hearing. As soon as that hearing is scheduled, we will post the date and time here.

TAKE ACTION NOW!

CALL OR WRITE MEMBERS OF THE SENATE JUDICIARY and let them know you OPPOSE SB 742. We've also included the Senate Democratic leadership so you can share your position with them. Here's the contact information:
Senator John Minnis, Chair (R)
District: 25
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1725
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE S-311, Salem Or 97301
Email Address: sen.johnminnis (at) state.or.us
Web page Address: http://www.leg.state.or.us/minnisj/Senator

Senator Ted Ferrioli (R)
District: 30
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1730
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE S-217, Salem Or 97301
Email Address: sen.tedferrioli (at) state.or.us
Web page Address: http://www.leg.state.or.us/ferrioli/Senator

Senator Charles Starr (R)
District: 13
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1713
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE S-312, Salem Or 97301
Email Address: sen.charlesstarr (at) state.or.us
Web page Address: http://www.leg.state.or.us/starrc/

Senator Ginny Burdick, Vice-Chair (D)
District: 18
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1718
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE S-317, Salem Or 97301
Email Address: sen.ginnyburdick (at) state.or.us
Web page Address: http://www.leg.state.or.us/burdick/

Senator Charlie Ringo (D)
District: 17
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1717
Capitol Address: 900 Court St NE S-314 Salem, OR 97301
Email Address: sen.charlieringo (at) state.or.us
Web page Address: http://www.leg.state.or.us/ringo/

Senator Vicki Walker (D)
District: 7
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1707
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE S-210, Salem Or 97301
Email Address: sen.vickiwalker (at) state.or.us
Web page Address: http://www.leg.state.or.us/walker/

Senate Leadership:

Senate President Peter Courtney (D)
District: 11
Capitol Phone: 503-986-1600
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE S-203, Salem Or 97301
Email Address: sen.petercourtney (at) state.or.us
Web page Address: http://www.leg.state.or.us/senate/senpres

Senator Kate Brown, Democrat Leader
District: 21 Capitol Phone: 503-986-1700
Capitol Address: 900 Court St. NE S-323, Salem Or 97301
Capitol Fax:503-986-1080
Email Address: sen.katebrown (at) state.or.us
Web page Address: http://www.leg.state.or.us/brown/
See also:
www.aclu-or.org
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God Bless America! (english)
03 Apr 2003
Good thing our boys are over in Iraq defending freedom and democracy here in the good ole USA... oh, wait... what freedom and democracy?