February 02, 2006

Sheehan: Wanted to make a scene after all

Well, it seems Cindy Sheehan wanted to make "a scene" at the State of the Union Address after all. In her latest Daily Kos entry, she admits as much, although some have zeroed in on the fact that she was "merely hot" and just wanted some relief (she thus exposed the "protest" T-shirt she had on). While the Kos entry does mention she "was warm from climbing 3 flights of stairs" and hence unzipped her jacket, she goes on to note

I wore the shirt to make a statement. The press knew I was going to be there and I thought every once in awhile they would show me and I would have the shirt on.

The debate over free expression is a good one here. Some have argued that Sheehan's 1st Amendment rights were violated (she herself says she is filing a lawsuit ... hey, if she didn't it wouldn't be America after all, eh?) whereas others have stated that it wasn't the time and place to protest. If, for example, Sheehan was allowed to wear such a shirt for that event, why wouldn't she be "within her rights" to take the microphone from President Bush to rebut him after each point he made? Where is the line drawn? And is a dress code a violation of free speech rights in this case?

Posted by Hube at February 2, 2006 01:54 PM | TrackBack

Comments  (We reserve the right to edit and/or delete any comments. If your comment is blocked or won't post, e-mail us and we'll post it for you.)

I posted on this over on the college dems blog (http://www.smartbluehens.blogspot.com). Its apparently House rules, as a Representatives wife was also removed for a tee-shirt, this one supporting the troops.

I heard today an apology was issued to both women, though I haven't found an article about it.

Posted by: Mike McKain at February 2, 2006 04:55 PM

Actually, I believe it's not House rules. Which is why the Capitol Police apologized. Apparently both the pro-war and anti-war shirts should have been permissible.

Clearly the two women were treated differently based on the messages contained on their shirts.
I'd probably have no problem with limiting speech at the SOTU---a line should be drawn, as Hube says, and it is no place for a disruption. But one rule ought to apply to both. And the Capitol Police should probably have a clue about what it is!

The telling quote, though, was from the Congressman who went and cried to Karl Rove about his wife being harassed -- but said he wouldn't have really cared if it was a crackdown only on the anti-war side.

Posted by: dan at February 2, 2006 06:27 PM

I believe House rules prevent "Demonstrations," so the issue is the definition of that term. Certainly one standard should apply to each, and I agree that it should not apply to the clothing an individual chooses to wear, as it does not cause any disruption in the proceedings unless others around them allow it to.

Posted by: Mike McKain at February 2, 2006 10:57 PM

A- Sheehan's sympathy pass has expired, right?
B- How dumb does she sound? What do you think her IQ is?
C- How come I have to enter my info every time I post here? I check the "remember" question yes? But it does not remember!

Posted by: AJ Lynch at February 3, 2006 02:02 PM

AJ: No idea. I've never had a hassle with it. Make sure your browser allows for such "remebering." That may be the culprit.

Posted by: Hube at February 3, 2006 03:23 PM

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