Police State/Civil Liberties

Does This Seem Familiar?

This is from an article that was written by Jerry Rubin, a founder of the “Yippies,” and a defendant in the “Chicago 8” trial in 1969-1970 when the Nixon administration was trying to use trumped-up charges stemming from the unrest at the 1968 Democratic Convention for the purpose of eliminating the leadership of the antiwar movement. This was originally published in the New York Review of Books in February 1969. Here’s what may be the presently most relevant part:

By chance, Jack Mabley, a columnist for the conservative Chicago American, happened to be in the streets when I was picked up. This is how he described what happened:

“No blood flowed in one of the most ominous happenings. Jerry Rubin…was walking west on Washington…. A girl [Nancy] was with him….

“An unmarked car with four policemen skidded to a stop besides Rubin. Three men jumped out. ‘Come on Jerry, we want you,’ one called as they grabbed Rubin. The girl screamed, ‘We haven’t done anything! We were just walking.’

“I have heard Rubin speak, and he was obscene and revolting. In America a man may be arrested for obscenity or revolution. But Rubin was grabbed off the street and rushed to jail because of what he thinks.

“This is the way it is done in Prague. This is what happens to candidates who finish second in Vietnam. This is not the beginning of the police state, it IS the police state.”

I was then accused of a wild assortment of charges and bail was set at $25,000, more than the usual bail for accused murderers.

Read the entire article


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