Time to Give Heave Ho to Occupy DC

By Washington Examiner, Washington Examiner - November 16, 2011

In a span of less than five days, Occupy Wall Street protesters have been evicted from their rapidly degenerating tent encampments in five cities across the country, including the original in New York's Zuccotti Park, plus Denver, Salt Lake City, Portland and Oakland. In every one of these cities, originally sympathetic Democratic mayors (or Democrat-turned-independent in the case of New York's Michael Bloomberg) concluded that the camps had become dangerous threats to the public health and safety and had to be removed. Also in every case, the authorities promised that the protesters could return to the areas they had occupied and continue protesting, but only after cleanups from their previous encampments were completed. This time, however, no overnight camping will be allowed.

It's a different story here in the nation's capital, where local and federal officials have allowed the Occupy DC protesters to continue squatting in McPherson Square in direct contradiction of federal regulations. Outside of Occupy DC's "media tent" in McPherson Square is a piece of paper with the words: "We are not camping. We are assembling peacefully to petition the government for a redress of grievances. This is our permit." The words are written over a copy of the Bill of Rights with the First Amendment circled. That sounds good, but the Occupy movement's grasp of the First Amendment is as divorced from reality as its understanding of the U.S. economy.

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