Yes. I found it incredibly weaselly. You know, because of some anecdotal allegations about people feeling intimidated by protesters once upon a sometime in the Capitol (why, someone once hollered and made a little girl cry!), therefore we must arrest people for holding banners over balconies and singing without a permit! Oh, the humanity!
Well, you know those banners are very dangerous -- "a hazard," I think Chief Erwin said -- what with the two by fours and weights and stuff
! On the bottom edge
I hope you feel properly terrorized and fearful now, and fully appreciate Chief Erwin's efforts to keep us all safe from randomly shouting crazy people and dangerous hanging banners.
Personally I was hoping someone would bring up the contention that the "medical crisis" that a protester was arrested for supposedly interfering with (one of Erwin's examples to justify his policy) was actually brought on by a group of Capitol police non-confrontationally
surrounding and handcuffing the medical crisisee, whom they had targeted for "de-escalation" because she was perceived to be a "leader" by the CP. Apparently the police were so busy keeping the peace by causing a commotion that they failed to notice she was having an attack; the second protester was arrested for pointing it out. I would have enjoyed hearing Erwin squirm over that.
And what's with all the focus on "leaders" and "troublemakers" (total number estimate fell from 20 to 10 to "about 5" over the course of the half hour -- see? the policy's working!)? Erwin kept on pointing out again and again that per Capitol Police enforcement policy some specific individuals (known only to them) have less free speech than others, because the Capitol Police say so. It's like a law suit waiting to happen, with the (very
) public radio interview as supporting evidence.