When in the Course of dancing Events, it becomes necessary for a group of people to question the tactics and authority of others, and to assume among the Powers of the Interwebs, the separate and equal Station to which the Laws of Nature and the Constitution entitle them, a decent respect to the First Amendment requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to Action.
WE hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the ability to quietly listen to 80s hip-hop in the Jefferson Memorial—That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Governed—yeah that’s right, we said BY THE GOVERNED—that whenever any agent of the Government becomes obstructive of these Ends, it is the Right of the People to get all kinds of pissed off. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Laws long established (read First Amendment) should not be ignored for light and transient Causes; and that “bopping” silently to Rob Base and DJ EZ Rock is one of lightest and most transient of causes we’ve ever heard of.
This website is dedicated to our friend, Brooke Oberwetter, who was wrongfully arrested for legitimately questioning authority. To that end, we have three goals that we seek to achieve through our actions:
1. We call for her record to be cleared.
2. We call on the park police, security officers involved and their chain of command to give this person a personal apology.
3. We call on all concerned citizens to join us for the next Thomas Jefferson Dance Party which will be huge.
We are several concerned friends who have day jobs working in public policy and journalism—and most of us have a blog or two on the side. This site is part of a larger effort on the part of many individuals to clear our friend’s name.
Some commenters on other blogs have questioned the importance of our work on this issue, and wonder why so many people are paying attention when there is a war going on and people being tortured by our government. While those are two (of many) very valid issues about which to be concerned, if your friend was arrested for no legitimate reason and you could do something about it, we would not fault you for doing so. There are plenty of abuses by the government and this just happens to be one that we’re focusing on right now because it hit close to home.
Furthermore, we are doing this to let people know that what Brooke did was not wrong. Individuals have the right—if not the obligation— to question arbitrary authority. The police are not authorized to arrest and charge people for no legitimate reason. The officer could not have felt threatened (have you seen the size of that guy??), Brooke was not being hostile or in any way provocative, and simply questioned what it was that she was doing wrong. (see video)
While we will, at times, seem flippant or somewhat irreverent on this site, please, understand that we take this very seriously. Our friend was arrested, incarcerated, and charged with a crime. We solemnly refuse to stand idly by when a member of the government oversteps his prerogative to keep people safe, deprives our friend of her inalienable right to freedom, and besmirches her name with a bogus charge.
Please note: The authors and administrators of this site are solely responsible for its content. In no way should their words, ideas, or actions reflect upon Brooke Oberwetter or any personal or professional affiliations the authors may have.