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    Posted by Green Party Peace Network on November 10, 2007

    This just in from Jamilla, our fabulous Green sister from Kennebunk, who has organized many a Peace event including the two in Kennebunk this past July. ~ Jacqui Deveneau

    The new law was not even on the books for a day when the town removed it. I mounted a campaign against it as it was unconstitutional.

    Foward to Greens who should consider this a victory. check out the Portland Press Herald tomorrow.



    in Kennebunkport and taste success.

    After four successful protests in Kennebunkport within a year the town’s business community, wealthy retirees, and who knows, maybe even the Bush family said “enough!” It appears that they forced the hand of the selectmen and the “Kennebunkport powers that be” to put a NEW MASS GATHERING LAW to a public vote.The vote for the law won by a wide margin, which was expected in this Republican enclave.

    However, when I heard about the proposed ordinance I called our friends at the MCLU.

    The Maine Civil Liberty’s attorney and they went to a town meeting and aimed at convincing them of the unconstitutionally of their new ordinance. But the lawyer could not convince the

    town selectmen to scrap the proposed ordinance.

    On Wednesday morning I conferred with the MCLU and decided that we will sue. Then I set about mobilizing people with an email and phone call campaign targeting the town hall as well as letters to the editors in local media.

    The old law worked fine. I applied for permits from the police chief, got my event insurance

    and fulfilled all expectations of the town, which included leaving the town LITTER FREE!

    After each protest the chief of police always complimented me in how well the events were organized and said that our groups” left the streets cleaner than when we found them.”

    The problem was that it worked “too well !” So the town’s powers to be, then preceded to take away Chief Bruni’s power to authorize permits, leaving the decision to the Board of Selectmen

    (who are mostly Republicans) which not only makes the process of getting a permit too arbitrary. The other issue is the time it would take to get a permit as the Board of Selectmen

    only meet every two weeks! For example If we hear that Bush is coming to town (in a few days), like what happened when Sarkozy came to K’port with a few days notice, I may not have time to mobilize folks. That was the whole idea of the law, to put roadblocks in the path of organizers to discourage them from taking action.

    Although this is a small victory, it is an empowering example of engaged citizenry fighting back to prevent further erosion of our civil rights.


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