Why aren't Bush's rallys open to everyone?

I read a couple of weeks ago that if you wanted to attend a Bush rally you had to state that you were a Bush supporter. It was hard to believe and I think I just went into denial. But, today there is a rally in Bangor and if you want to get tickets to attend you have to give the Secret Service your name, address, telephone number, birth date and Social Security number as well as state whether you support Bush, or are undecided. I guess we no longer have freedom of assembly or the freedom to go to a public meeting and be called on to express an opinion, or ask a question, if it makes Bush look bad. Or more likely, risk he is unable to formulate a cohesive and comprehensible response.

The woman who’s son was killed in Iraq that was arrested when Laura Bush spoke last week? Yes, she said Bush should be shot and die in torment like her son; but, the fact that the Secret Service even wanted her arrested is incomprehensible. She’s a grieving mother and obviously is against the war and has lost her son. I guess you might have to have two brain cells to rub together to figure out she isn’t any threat to the president or his wife.

Does this scare anyone else? I keep seeing Jews lined up at tables in Warsaw to register. It was for a different reason, but it all comes down to trying to frighten people and control them. I fear Bush thinks it’s okay to scare people because after all he is trying to protect us. It’s for our own good.

And if I get a visit from the SS for writing this, I’ll let you know.

It bothers me too; however, it’s not a freedom-of-assembly issue - you also can’t go to a concert if you don’t have a ticket. It’s a private function.

I don’t know if Kerry does the same thing (having you attest that you’re not for the other side), but I do know I was specifically invited to a couple of Kerry rallies, and you did have to get a (free) ticket.

Freedom of assembly does not include the right to attend anyone’s meeting. The rally is for Bush supporters. If you are not a Bush supporter, you’re not invited. That is a perfect example of freedom of assembly: Bush supporters are free to assemble with other Bush supporters, without having to put up with morons screaming about how evil Bush is. Or you.

Don’t worry - I’m sure the public reaction to Bush’s intransigence will cause him to sharply plummet in the polls. Right?

A woman says that the President should be shot and die in torment, and you expect the Secret Service to say, “Ho hum. That’s no threat there.”

I believe I know why you are not a Secret Service officer. You are remarkably unqualified for the position.

Hasty Generalization, Unrepresentative Sample, False Analogy, Strawman. Was there a sale at the Fallacy Store today?

Buy four, get Appeal to Consequences for free?

  • Rick

Maybe she didn’t pose a security threat but she sure did pose a political threat. If it makes you feel any better, he ALCU has filed suit against the secret service. (PDF)

The secret Service doesn’t much like it when people say the president should be shot, whether the said president is Bush, Clinton, or Barney the Dinosaur. I can’t really blame the Secret Service for being concerned about that.

Absolutely. A thing must be OK if a plurality of the people say that it is. :rolleyes:

For the same reason I don’t invite just anyone to a party at my house. If it’s my gig and I’m paying for it, I want people here that I like.


My point about having to obtain a ticket is that for a concert you don’t have to provide personal information so they can put your name on a list or contact you if you do something they don’t like.

So, on what occasion would it be that I would have the privilege of seeing my President of my country in person? Never it seems. unless I want to give the SS my Social Secuity number and lie. and no one said anything about screaming evil things at Bush. You just assumed this, wrongly, I might add. I wanted to go and see him in person and see what he had to say. But, since I’m not allowed to I couldn’t possibly give him my vote.

One thing I forgot to add, was that my career was with the federal government and I would no more give the SS my personal information in this situation than I would give it to some stranger on the street. If you are under the false assumption that it is private then let me disavow you of that; it’s not private. Most government computers are not secure. This private information is subject to abuse not only by the government, but by anyone who wants to hack into the computer and get it.

You’re not the President of the United States who is also supposed to be my president. I guess not.

What in the world has happened to common sense? For god’s sake.

I know I’ve done the ticket thing to hear candidates speak in the past. However, they were used more as a “marketing” tool than anything else. Fill out a little card with name, address, phone and then get a ticket. I think for Gore, I had to show ID along with the ticket the day of the event. I’m sure that I didn’t give out my social, although it is on my driver’s license.

I’d never give out my social just to hear a candidate speak. I haven’t gone to see any candidate this year, but should Kerry or Edwards stop by Columbus again, I’ll try to go.

Thank you Patty. Yes, it did make me feel better. I don’t always agree with the ACLU but I’m glad I live in a country where free people can still have their day in court.

That’s what we’re working on. Getting the word out. I believe that if the people were fully informed about what Bush is doing, they would not give him another term.

This is yet another thing that Kerry should be hammering on Bush for. He should be making clear that this Admin is an exclusive country club.

As far as the lady goes, I feel for her, and I’ll bet that nothing will come of it, eventually. But realistcally, if anybody knows anything about the SS, it’s that if you say something threatening about the prez, they’re gonna git you sucka!

For those of you wondering if Kerry does the same thing… I don’t know (though I suspect not), but I do know that Edwards doesn’t. I recently heard part of a rally at which he spoke. In the background you could hear the chanting of, “Four more years!” He turned it around to the audience saying, “What do you think, four more years of…” and went on to list Bush’s critical faults.

Just in case you think that this is a vice president versus president thing, Chaney is well known to not allow opponents into political rallies and is thought (at least by the NPR report I was listening to) to be one of the biggest motivations behind Bush being so exclusive.

This is definitely the kind of thing that should be stressed more by Kerry. I would drop support for him quickly if I found him doing the same thing.

Jon Stewart asked him this, and he said his rallies are open to all. In the old days campaign speeches were at least partly to convince the undecided. Bush’s I suppose are only to show on television, with the incorrect message that he has 100% support. I’m sure it is legal, but it is dishonest and definitely cowardly.

I don’t think there’s anything illegal about it, but I sure don’t think this kind of stage-managing is good for the country. That would go the same for Kerry if he were to surround himself with only his supporters. Talk about dividing the country into Red and Blue America.

Sure, it may look better on TV if the only thing the public sees is adoring supporters of the candidate. But I think it sends a crappy message that the head of the American government (or the potential head) no longer feels an obligation to reach out and meet and talk with ordinary Americans, unless the unwashed masses agree with them.

I am one, however, who believes that the White House is becoming too much of a castle. I think Presidents should face the public, or at least the press, on a regular basis so that he has to answer tough questions about issues of the day. That’s a comment that I believe would apply to any President, whether I liked him or not, but I believe Bush falls particularly short in this regard.

You’re a master of understatement.

I don’t know about the first two, but Barney might benefit from a cap in his…hold on someone’s at the door.

Would you feel the same about Kerry rally’s? Can you in all honesty say that you would have no problem opening up BOTH sides equally?? Think about it for a minute before you knee jerk answer.

Should just anyone be able to attend such political rally’s, reguardless of which ‘side’ they are on? Should people be able to disrupt such rally’s with shouts and heckling (which is what you REALLY want to allow, no)? If so, how do candidates get the message out? I’m pretty sure that if we threw this wide open that the President would be able to rally a lot more ‘spoilers’ against person running against him than vice versa. And what exactly would we accomplish? The lunitic fringe would be in charge, because they are a lot louder…on BOTH sides of the fence. There would be a higher probability of violence at rally’s, further discouraging the more mild majority from attending…it would encourage the violent on BOTH sides to attend and to spoil IMHO. Is that REALLY what you want? Or do you just want it to be open for protesters to crash Bush’s rally’s because its ‘right’?

Such is the world we live in. I don’t particularly like this aspect of modern life either…but its reality. I relish a hell of a lot less having to bury a sitting president more…no matter whether its a president I like or not.