Tune in to this fabulous local solution — a template all cities can apply to help protect us from the dangerous NDAA.
Read a transcript of the audio (to translate the transcript, choose your language at the top of this page)
Kimberly: Hi! I just learned about a fantastic local solution to a big national problem that we have here in America, which I’m excited to share with you.
First, a little bit of context before we get to the good news is that on New Year’s Eve on 2011, around 11:30pm, while most of us were hanging out with the person we wanted to kiss at midnight or watching the ball drop at Times Square, or doing whatever we do on New Year’s Eve, President Obama was in Hawaii and he signed into effect something called the National Defense Authorization Act (the “NDAA”). This is one of the most dangerous, tyrannical laws ever to show up here in America. What it does is it allows the Federal government and the military to seize any individual, or group of individuals, and hold them indefinitely in a detention center anywhere in the world without any legal representation, without ever notifying their family, and without any probable cause to show that they’ve committed some kind of a crime. All that is needed for this to happen is that some undesignated person in authority claims that we have in some substantial way supported an enemy of America. The vagary of this is absurd. There are no official enemies of America because none of the wars we’re in have ever been officially declared by Congress. Clearly, many of us working for solutions in this country could fall prey to seizure under the NDAA.
Fortunately, there are wonderful people in local areas organizing to come up with a solution for this, which I’ll tell you about. They’re setting up a Constitution Protection Zone. Who has taken this on in Santa Cruz County is the Romero Institute (there’s a link to them below this blog) and, in particular, Danny Sheehan, a fabulous attorney, has drafted an ordinance for local city councils and Board of Supervisors where it makes it unlawful for any local law enforcement agency to enforce or help to enforce seizures that are based on this law. In addition, what it does is it makes it so that anybody who is targeted is notified and protected and provided this due process of legal representation and innocence until proven guilty. This is a very significant ordinance that can stand to the face of this absurd and really dangerous national law.
Foster and I, of course, envision and work toward a level of freedom that is based on protective, inalienable rights that don’t count on one group that claims authority over us, protecting us from another group that claims authority over us that’s causing harm. However, meanwhile, we recognize that we are very far down the road in this current system. That’s why we developed our 3-stage Solutions Strategy that begins where we are and says in this stage, one of the most potent things we can do is use our local governments to take over the power that is currently coming down from the Federal government and work our way through the stages to this more all-inclusive level of freedom. So, you can see this ordinance that’s been drafted. It’s a template that can be used in any community throughout America. You can get it to your Board of Supervisors and your city council. You can organize with others through the Solutions Hub at www.thrivemovement.com. Or, you can do it on your own. However you want to, the point is that this is a great gift of sort of back-end work that’s been done now so you don’t need to hire a new attorney and go through the expense of that. You can work with this, get it established in your community, so that local region by local region we can bond together and stand up against this kind of tyranny. I know for me, I’ve been thinking every major movement that empowers people, from the American Revolution to the suffragettes to civil rights and gay rights, all these movements…they weren’t initiated by the government. They were initiated by individuals coming together, organizing together, and standing up for what we know is right on our way to a truly thriving world. I encourage you to check out the ordinance, share it in your communities, spread it around and let’s overcome this NDAA and work towards this freedom that we know is possible.
If you want to acknowledge the value of this legal work and help Santa Cruz become the first constitutional protection zone, please contribute to the Romero Institute. Even if you are not a resident of Santa Cruz County, a win here will help turn the tides for Protection Zones around the Country.
Want to learn more? Here is a great talk by Chris Hedges: Defending Our Civil Liberties.
To see the Ordinance and learn more, visit Romero Institute.