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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
reggie miles the pot calling the kettle black NW Folk (20) RE: the pot calling the kettle black NW Folk 23 May 10

squeezeboxhp, nope these were not the FOLK POLICE. From what I could tell these were of the genuine variety. Their uniforms looked real enough. They may have been moonlighting on the festival's behalf, or asked to cover the event as part of their duties for the weekend. I don't know for certain about that. I know that some security personnel do get hired on as extras for such events and are assigned uniforms that resemble actual police issued outfits, when, in fact, they are merely costumes meant as a deterrent.

I also know that actual officers in this country are hesitant to simply offer the courtesy of identify themselves to those with whom they are engaged in their official capacity. None of the officers introduced themselves or offered a badge number. Not even the head of security for the event behaved in this common courtesy manner. His first words were, "I'm in a hurry." and his next were, to identify himself as head of security for the event. At no time did he introduce himself properly. He merely used his title to establish dominance.

Actually, this is generally what police officers do in this country. I guess it's in their training or perhaps just in their mind that they wouldn't be on the scene if there wasn't something serious that needed their assistance. So, they dispense with any pleasantries or introductions and are all business. I don't fault them in that.

But when questionable tactics are being used, as with this security guy, to call for police assistance, when, in fact, there was no need for such intervention, I'm certain that he made up a whopper to cover himself. I asked him, "Why are you doing this?" He did not reply. I'm certain that for someone in his position this was the highlight of his day, getting a chance to justify himself by having a folk musician expelled from the event using police force. He probably gave himself a gold star on his report card when he got home.

The uniformed personnel weren't very talkative either. When I tried to communicate with them, as they walked up, they were totally unwilling to even listen to anything that I had to say. They were simply there to do the NWF security guy's bidding. He knew that he had them as an ace up his sleeve.

I'm certain that he inflamed the incident to them in order to justify using their assistance. I had already complied fully to his requests and made no effort, in word or deed, to do otherwise. It's the abuse of power in this situation that bothered me most. Here was someone doing just that.

Had he, in his actions, created a safer environment or accessible environment on the grounds for anyone. No! I could wander less than 100 feet onto the grounds and find more serious accessibility issues and all of them would have been involved with the vendors setting up under or near covered walkways near major intersections at this event. None of them would have involved street performers entertaining at this event.

I'm certain that the organizers would crow, "Yes, that's because we have such a dedicated security staff keeping performers at bay." To this attitude I would simply say, as I have already pointed out many times, that the event and their security force use tactics, like the ones used against me, to demonize performers and they have done so for years. At the same time, they have turned a blind eye to the mess that they themselves have made and all those who cause it, simply because of the monetary recompense that they receive from those who vend on the grounds of this public park during the weekend.

I further attest that this event is not interested, not in the least, with the actual constitutionality or legality of their proposed regulations regarding freedom of expression and do flaunt their illegal actions in such a manner because they believe they can do so with impunity. This is exactly what I heard from the voice on the phone. That person said to me that the event is not liable.

In order to further control our activities, beyond proposing the use unconstitutional regulations on our activities, that are, in fact, illegal to enact or even consider using, They somehow see their $10 fee to vend our recordings as a necessary means to try to turn street performers into the vendors that they'd like us to become. Because, if we were officially classified as vendors, they would have far more control over our actions and activities on the grounds. Then, they could further regulate us even further into a corner.

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