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"The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt." - John Philpot Curran


Police "Protection"

If hurricane Katrina taught us anything, it's that a natural disaster area is the perfect breeding ground for police state tactics. Perhaps the most blatant example was the illegal confiscation of guns in and around New Orleans.

While it hasn't quite escalated to the same level, there are similarities in the aftermath of the recent flooding in Iowa:
    Police set up checkpoints to keep people away from the affected neighborhoods, deemed unsafe after weeks of heavy rain forced the Cedar River from its banks, leaving much of Iowa's second-largest city underwater.

    Evacuees waited in line at the checkpoints Sunday to receive special wristbands that allowed them to go home and gather their belongings. Authorities set a curfew and asked the residents to stay out of the neighborhoods between 8 p.m. and 6 a.m., so people stuffed what they could into plastic bags and returned to the checkpoints.

    One resident, however, grew angry when he was not allowed to pass a checkpoint Monday, according to a news release from the Cedar Rapids Police Department.

    After being denied re-entry to a flooded neighborhood, Rick Blazek, 53, returned to his vehicle as a state trooper used his police vehicle to block the checkpoint, according to the news release.

    "Blazek drove his vehicle toward the state trooper and struck the state trooper three times with his vehicle," the release said.

    Police told Blazek to get out of his vehicle, and when he refused, "the driver's window was broken out because the doors were locked and Blazek was removed from his vehicle," according to the release.

    The trooper was not injured. Blazek, who was arrested and charged with assault on a peace officer with a deadly weapon, could not be immediately reached for comment.
I'm not excusing Blazek's actions, but people have a tendency to get a little testy when they're being forced from their own property.



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