Minneapolis City Council tables anti-Occupy public plaza restrictions

barb johnson square.jpg
Johnson is awaiting the results of a comparative plaza rules study before deciding whether to abandon her proposal for good.
Last month, we told you about Minneapolis City Council President Barb Johnson's proposed ordinance that would've restricted access to city-controlled public plazas, including Peavey Plaza, between midnight and 6 a.m.

The rest of the City Council never seemed particularly supportive of Johnson's proposal, and during a committee meeting yesterday Johnson decided to table her proposal pending the results of a study being done by the City Attorney on plaza rules in other cities.

Said Johnson: "It seems to me that at this point we are dealing with a relatively diminishing problem," adding that she nonetheless remains "extremely concerned" about "the use of police resources when I represent a community that is challenged with public safety issues."

In other words, Johnson is concerned that police are wasting their time hanging around late at night near Peavey Plaza, the headquarters of Minnesota's Occupy movement this year, when they could be out doing more important things.

Peavey became the home of Mpls.' Occupy movement this spring.

"And I just think that we're spending a lot of time babysitting people," Johnson said. "But if that's kind of what people want to do, at this point it's -- as I say -- a relatively small number of people. So I think we can postpone this."

Minneapolis police may be sick of babysitting people, but outstate troopers have apparently been getting their jollies by giving the Peavey Plaza Occupiers pot. So maybe the MPD should be more concerned about what their law enforcement colleagues are up to in and around the plaza.

In any event, for the time being at least, Occupiers and the homeless folks who use Minneapolis' public plazas for an overnight place of shelter remain free to do so.

See also:
-- Minneapolis City Council considering anti-Occupy public plaza restrictions
-- Police did indeed give Occupiers free pot, new evidence suggests; DRE program suspended
-- Minnesota police giving Peavey Plaza Occupy-ers drugs as part of impairment study, report says [VIDEO]

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The biggest hurdle Johnson's proposal faces is that it's hard to write a law that allows the 24 Hours of Music festival, which the City Council would like, while excluding citizens from exercising their right of free assembly, which the City Council does not like.  Needless to say, all the coordinated strategies coming from the Department of Homeland Security are flagrantly unConstitutional, but that doesn't seem to bother the people who prefer the nation to be looted rather than have to look at and listen to dirty hippies.


If people can have guns, they should be able to assemble in public spaces.

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