Orange County has many claims to fame: Richard Nixon, the S&L scandal, subprime boiler-rooms, Disneyland, an airport honoring a cowboy named Marion, and now, the revelation that its police force secretly uses low-flying surveillance aircraft to break the encryption of thousands of cellphone users, track their movements, and intercept their communications.
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A five-hour Irvine, Orange County, CA city council meeting ended with the council unanimously agreeing that the Occupy tents on the town hall's lawn were a form of free speech and vowing to "add the needs of 'The 99%' to their official agenda." Afterwards, the mayor asked the protesters if they needed any more blankets.
The council members each spoke in turn to the civility, articulateness and
peaceful process represented by the Irvine Occupation at contrast with the
several other Occupational Villages in California, which were, at that
very moment being tear-gassed. The general sentiment being: 'This is quite
clearly the model. And the occupation most in tune with city needs.'
One councilman stated clearly, 'I disagree with most of what you're
saying. But you've clearly shown that this is an issue of free speech. So
if you need to sleep on our lawn, by all means, sleep on our lawn.'
Shortly after, a motion was brought to the council to grant license to the
occupiers to occupy the public space overnight citing the unusual form of
the movement. (Another first in council history.)
TEARS STREAM AS CITY COUNCIL UNANIMOUSLY AGREES ‘OCCUPY TENTS ARE A FORM OF SPEECH’
(via Beth Pratt)
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