Protest or Vandalism?

Is Chris Young, credited with being a member of the Occupy Sarasota group, a protester, or a Vandal.  He himself stated, in a televised interview, that he did not know they were going to be there so, does that make him a member of the group, or just a cause that they can take up for more publicity?

Chris Young was arrested by Sarasota Police when he refused the order to stop writing on the sidewalk, by the officer who arrested him.  He has since be claimed by the Occupy Sarasota group, and the American Civil Liberties Union, as a sort of poster child for tree speech.

This, to the left, is a photo of Chris Young’s work,  published in the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.  I take it that he was arrested before the completion of his  work of ART,  and so that might explain why the point of his protest is unclear.

This is a photo of Truman Adam, in another photo published by the Sarasota Herald.  This was taken as he was using chalk, much like Chris Young, to portray the United States Constitution.  This protest, of the earlier arrest, was carried out WITH A PERMIT.

Mr. Young‘s doodling have been compared to the recent Art Festival where a section of downtown road was closed off to allow chalk drawing, which were later washed away.  The second protest, with chalk, was permitted because the groups had promised to clean up after themselves.

Sarasota City commissioner Shannon Snyder, and ex-cop, had this to say about the chalk, “The city has an obligation to control its property,” Snyder said. Protesters have been doing the chalk thing for weeks, and “they weren’t cleaning it up. They were leaving it there, as part of their protest.”

In this country we believe in exercising out right to free speech.  My question would be : Does this give us the right, whether in chalk or paint, to deface other people’s property, be it that of a private citizen or government?  If I were to go to the homes of the Occupy Sarasota people to write slogan on THEIR sidewalks, or driveways, would they, or the ACLU, support my freedom of speech of would the have me arrested.

The most probable outcome would be my arrest, rightly, with both the Occupy Sarasota and ACLU telling me that they could NOT support a right to deface property.

In THIS I support the Sarasota City Police Department whole heartedly.

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One Reply to “Protest or Vandalism?”

  1. A picture of someone urinating on the chalk protest statements would make a good staement as well! Would they put that one in the paper? Just kidding. Of course not. The paper must remain in good taste — or is that a matter of opinion as well?
    Overall I too support proper Police work — always have. If someone wants to protest, get a Big Stick and a Poster Board and write your opinion of on that and carry it around — AFTER you’ve gotten a permit to do so! (Please dispose of properly after use…)

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