Condemn police oppression against Food Not Bombs in Ft. Lauderdale (and everywhere else, too!)
  • Petitioned John P. "Jack" Seiler

This petition was delivered to:

Mayor of Fort Lauderdale
John P. "Jack" Seiler
Chief of Police, Fort Lauderdale Police Dept.
Franklin Adderley

Condemn police oppression against Food Not Bombs in Ft. Lauderdale (and everywhere else, too!)

    1. Jeff Weinberger
    2. Petition by

      Jeff Weinberger

      Plantation, FL

The international peace organization, Food Not Bombs, has been opposing war and feeding healthy vegan meals to homeless people in public parks across the US for about 30 years but, while the group has never been bigger, it also has never experienced the heightened level of police oppression which lately seems to go hand in glove with the everyday level of oppression we see against the homeless community in general.  From Venice Beach, CA, to sunny Ft. Lauderdale, FL, criminalization of the homeless and their advocates is on the rise.

In February, approximately a dozen Fort Lauderdale Police made an unwarranted raid of a collective house - affectionately known as The SWAMP - shared by local FNB activists.  To complement their unlawful entry and kicking in of a bedroom door, police subjected those present to illegal searches and harassment which included explicit suggestions that the group was a terrorist organization and/or training center or, at best, black bloc anarchists.  Attorneys from the National Lawyers Guild have stepped up to represent the group.

The week beginning on May Day was particularly challenging.  Following a day of traditional May Day celebrations, the group sponsored a game of  "Capture the Battle Flag" in the downtown area.  Harmless enough, right, with a bunch of kids of all ages having a blast, running around the streets dressed like a cross between Mad Max and RuPaul?  Not according to FLPD,  which saw fit to arrest two of the participants - both FNB members well-known to them - for trespassing onto one of the many capacious corporate lawns which are contiguous with downtown sidewalks and separated from them by nothing but the air.

The remainder of the week merely saw two FLPD visits to The SWAMP, one under the guise of a search for a longtime ex-tenant with an outstanding bench warrant (the cops demanded to be let in and were denied), the other merely to take photos from a passing cruiser (intended to be on the sly) - a regular occurrence.  And last Tuesday the ubiquitous Officer J. Czech - a cop who seems to relish harassing the homeless - stood intimidatingly in the space where the food sharings occur, harassing the homeless and FNB together under the Stranahan Park gazebo.  To top it off a park ranger and FLPD ally commandeered and tore up a sign the group had made which condemned police oppression.

Against a backdrop of impending new ordinances banning public food sharing - based on a very recent ruling by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals relating to Orlando Food Not Bombs - the police in Ft. Lauderdale and elsewhere have assumed they have a green light to proceed with all kinds of unconstitutional mayhem against peaceful organizations.  It's past time to make them see RED!

 

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    1. Reached 100 signatures

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    • Jailene Warren CHULUOTA, FL
      • almost 3 years ago

      This is ridiculous!! I am so angry!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • kat taylor ARGYLE TWP, ME
      • almost 3 years ago

      free healthy food should be available to everyone...not used as a tool of oppression.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Lorene Nichols GARDEN GROVE, CA
      • about 3 years ago

      Food Not Bombs,Law enforcement must be stopped from harassment of the Homeless and we the people who want to help

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Ronald Lux HUNTINGTON BEACH, CA
      • about 3 years ago

      It is a damn shame that these pinheads that are supposed to serve and protect us are comming down on people that are doing the right thing by feeding the homeless, but what would you expect when our government officals would pay the farmers to let there crops rott in the fields rather than feed the people in this great country!!!!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • James Elliott LONG BEACH, CA
      • about 3 years ago

      I condemn all oppression through political tyranny,We don't have to stand tall...We just have to stand up!!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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