Threats to Petitioners for the People’s Veto?

warning red

The following threat was posted as a comment on our post about the People’s Veto in Maine.

Comment Posted by:

AndreasLights

Submitted on 2009/05/09 at 1:10pm

For the record, the names and home addresses of each person signing the veto petitions will be available for publication under the Freedom of Information Act.

Potential signers of the veto petition should be aware that this is not an anonymous process. Contributors to Proposition 8 in California were horrified to learn that their names and home addresses were made public.

In fairness, Maine voters should be aware of this in deciding whether or not to stand up publicly against marriage equality and must be willing to accept any ramifications as a result of their act of petition.

Threats received on this site are taken seriously.  I have forwarded this comment and all identifying information to law enforcement officials in Maine for investigation.

Voter intimidation is not only wrong, it is illegal.

—Beetle Blogger

39 Comments

  1. MalloryLee said,

    May 11, 2009 at 11:15 am

    Are you saying then that you support the juvenile tactics of those who targeted Prop 8 contributors? It certainly sounds that way from the third paragraph of your comment, “willing to accept.”

    It seems almost as if you favor threatening them into silence. That’s not democracy, that’s not a republican system of government. That’s government by thuggery.

  2. Chino Blanco said,

    May 11, 2009 at 11:37 am

    I’m confused. Are these “voters” or “petition signers” …

    Just me, splitting hairs again.

  3. lottie said,

    May 11, 2009 at 11:49 am

    Andreas, if you want the ‘freedom’ to harass and bully those exercising their rights of petition, why post threats under a pseudonym?

  4. screaminsteven said,

    May 11, 2009 at 12:07 pm

    Let them try it. They lost so much good will with voters in California. If the voters even got a whiff of those kind of intimidation tactics, they’d lose all the good will and sympathy voters.

    What are they so scared of that they have to threaten and intimidate in order to get their way? It looks like someone’s scared of the people getting their say.

  5. rubyeliot said,

    May 11, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    I think those who intimidated and harrassed prop 8 voters after the election would be very surprised at how many people would gladly put their name on a list knowing it would be public. it becomes a badge of honor.

  6. Chino Blanco said,

    May 11, 2009 at 12:38 pm

    For better or worse, rubyeliot, we’ll be testing that theory of yours going forward, won’t we?

    That said, I’ve gone ahead and forwarded my comment and all identifying information to law enforcement officials in Maine for investigation.

    Because, well, you know, that whole “badge of honor” thing and all.

    Weird how that works both ways.

    Now I’m just waiting to buy the next DNA T-shirt (not the one that announces “Prop 8 Supporter Here” with that cool Google Maps graphic … I’m talking about picking up a collector’s edition of the “Utah Mormon obsessed with New Hampshire politics” tee).

    What are those going for these days?

  7. May 11, 2009 at 12:50 pm

    I actually don’t see how that’s threatening. It’s true, it’s not an anonymous thing, it’s also true that there may indeed be ramifications, thought I think she was speaking of something along the lines of boycotts.

    Nope, not seeing the threat there. I’m sure the Maine police will be delighted to investigate a nonthreatening internet comment thread post, though.

  8. screaminsteven said,

    May 11, 2009 at 1:49 pm

    After the onslaught of all the negative harassment, name calling, and other great “Liberal” tactics bestowed upon Miss California, is this any surprise? These guys are the nastiest group of THUGS: http://foxforum.blogs.foxnews.com/2009/05/11/gainor_miss_california/

  9. beetlebabee said,

    May 11, 2009 at 1:53 pm

    True, the prop 8 fight in California was an eye opening experience for many of us, but for all their angry tactics and fear mongering, they gained nothing, and actually lost support. All that came out AFTER our election. This is coming out BEFORE Maine’s election. I can’t imagine these types of threats will go over well with the electorate.

  10. WIJG said,

    May 11, 2009 at 1:55 pm

    More liberal dirty politics. That’s what you got to do when you can’t win by putting it to a vote with the people … oh, and when you haven’t got any morals…

  11. Chino Blanco said,

    May 11, 2009 at 2:08 pm

    “No morals.”

    Didn’t Chris Buttars already speak to this issue months ago?

    I guess in these parts it’s one of those sentiments that bears repeating.

  12. Yours Sincerely said,

    May 11, 2009 at 2:37 pm

    Thanks for the Post BB. Forewarned is forearmed.

  13. Chairm said,

    May 11, 2009 at 3:48 pm

    CB asked: Are these “voters” or “petition signers”

    Petition signers must be eligible to vote. What is the useful distinction you seek to make?

    The experience in Massachusetts foretold what happened in California. Identity politics is a nasty business when it is asserted for the sake of supremacy, and that is what the SSM campaign is really, at root, all about. Gay identity politics doesn’t have to be so virulent, but since SSM argumentation negates the merit of restraint in a multitude of ways, the blatant attempts to intimidate are not really surprising.

    I know that being forewarned is important, however, neither being forewarned nor raising public awareness will dampen the use of these tactics by SSMers.

    The stronger our stand, the more nasty their mudslinging will become. For some marriage defenders the increase in volume will be hardly discernible since the SSMers seem to start at such a high pitch in the first place.

  14. Chino Blanco said,

    May 11, 2009 at 5:48 pm

    Seriously, Chairm? You can’t think of a single useful distinction between the act of voting and the act of signing a petition?

  15. Chairm said,

    May 11, 2009 at 7:36 pm

    You referred to people. “Petition signers” are “voters”.

    It is not up to me to fill-in the blanks that you imagine exists.

    What is the useful distinction you seek to make?

    A distinction that is useful is that a “petition signer” ___________ and a “voter” ___________. This is useful because __________.

  16. Chino Blanco said,

    May 11, 2009 at 8:20 pm

    Simple question.

    Nice effort with the blanks, though. Maybe one of your DNA buddies can step up and fill them in. I’m done playing Captain Obvious for today.

  17. KingM said,

    May 12, 2009 at 3:02 am

    Chairm,

    A voter has the right to cast a secret ballot, while a petitioner has no such right.

    I am not, however, in favor of intimidation tactics.

  18. Urabus said,

    May 12, 2009 at 6:12 am

    BB, you made the right call on reporting this. That is definitely a threat statement. But it is backfiring on the homosexuals. Their mentally debased nature is coming out in full color for all to see. Those of us here in California are not intimidated bu such juvenile tactics. I still donate to the Prop 8 campaign and legal defense fund every month, as well as other worthy advocates for healthy family values.

    Also in California, we the voters are now being threatened by the Sacramento overlords with “Dooms Day promises” if we vote down the 6 propositions for money grabbing on the ballot for May 19th. The polls are indicating all 6 will be defeated at this time. So they have ceased the cutesie commercials with little children and firefighters telling us to vote yes and replaced them with Dooms Day threat tactics.

  19. WIJG said,

    May 12, 2009 at 7:38 am

    “no morals”

    Chino, explain to me then how you justify the smearing, blacklisting and vandalism activities of your activist group as completely ethical and appropriate. It seems that the favorite “since your group has experienced persecution in the past you ought to be more tolerant” line of your activist group should apply to those activities as well.

  20. Mae said,

    May 12, 2009 at 9:18 am

    I can’t believe anyone would defend this threat. Where are your morals??

  21. May 12, 2009 at 9:57 am

    oh, no, look, I had them in my pocket, but i seem to have lost them. that’s right, they’re in the skirt i was wearing yesterday. silly me.

    i still can’t find the threat. no, wait, i’ve got it- are you also threatened by such obvious statements of fact as “water is wet” and “the sky is blue”?

  22. Rita Danning said,

    May 12, 2009 at 10:28 am

    “and must be willing to accept any ramifications as a result of their act of petition.”

    We’re not talking about your marbles honey. Yeah right “I MUST” I don’t have to accept any ramifications. If you want to go around intimidating people who want to participate in the process, you are to blame for that, not them.

    That’s like telling women who wear skirts that they’re “asking for it”. No, that’s not right. I hope they keep a nice little file on this guy. He’s nuts.

  23. Chairm said,

    May 12, 2009 at 4:03 pm

    KingM said:

    “A voter has the right to cast a secret ballot, while a petitioner has no such right.”

    Well, a voter’s identification needs to be verified to avoid fraud or mistakes made at the ballot box.

    The petitioners are officially registered with the government and are held responsible for the signature-gathering effort.

    Maybe you did not mean the petitioners but the people who sign the petition. Yes?

    Once again, validation of a signature by the authorities is one thing. Publicizing the individual’s address and so forth is quite another.

    Are you certain that the identification of the signers is unprotected in any way?

    The democratic process breakes down when people do not exercise restraint as they participate.

    KingM, what sort of tactics would you consider to be intimidation? Maybe you and Chinio might see eye to eye and both be a voice of restraint, in your own ways.

  24. Chairm said,

    May 12, 2009 at 4:05 pm

    Sorry for the misspelling, Chino.

  25. Op Ed. said,

    May 12, 2009 at 5:34 pm

    Mae: Where are your morals??
    PFailure: oh, no, look, I had them in my pocket, but i seem to have lost them.

    And the winner for best response goes to … :

    Rita: We’re not talking about your marbles honey.

    LOL.

    Rita: That’s like telling women who wear skirts that they’re “asking for it”.

    Brilliantly put!

  26. Chino Blanco said,

    May 12, 2009 at 11:38 pm

    Chairm, not sure what I’m supposed to be restraining. If laws have been broken, then the guilty need to be found and charged. But, at this point, as far as I know, there have been exactly ZERO arrests, ZERO charges, NADA.

    Seriously, it’s safe to venture outside your bunkers, guys. Good grief.

  27. Ryan said,

    May 13, 2009 at 9:33 am

    A threat is conditional promise to do something, but it’s only illegal if the person making the threat is not priviliged to fulfill the promise. The right to public participation in the political process includes the right to boycott someone who has taken a public position contrary to one’s own beliefs.
    It is impossible to prove that that this threat breaks any laws.

  28. Chairm said,

    May 13, 2009 at 9:34 am

    Chino do you plan to disrupt signature-gathering?

    Do you plan to publicize the addresses of people who sign the petition?

    If so, please explain the distinction (that you wanted to emphasize) between those who’d vote and those who’d sign petitions. And explain how that distinction is useful.

    Is this really a specific disctinction that is, you know, specific to your disagreement with the man-woman basis of marriage?

    If it is so obvious, plainly state it. What do you have to fear from stating what you believe to be obvious, Chino?

    Thanks.

  29. Chino Blanco said,

    May 13, 2009 at 9:46 pm

    Much to ponder there, Chairm.

    If by chance you’ll be in the Plymouth area a couple weekends from now, you oughta drop by and we can continue our discussion then.

    Emmanuel Bible Baptist Church
    Moosehead Trail (Rte 7)
    Plymouth, Maine
    Saturday, May 30, 7AM to 8PM
    Sunday, May 31, 1PM to 6PM

    Let me know which day, so I can remember to bring an extra camp stool (don’t worry, I’m talkin’ the comfy kind, with armrests and back support).

  30. Chairm said,

    May 13, 2009 at 10:53 pm

    What do you have to fear from stating what you believe to be obvious, Chino?

  31. Chino Blanco said,

    May 13, 2009 at 11:20 pm

    I thought #17 answered already.

  32. Chairm said,

    May 14, 2009 at 5:46 pm

    See #23.

    What is the distinction that you think is *useful*, Chino, and why do you fear stating it plainly?

  33. Chino Blanco said,

    May 14, 2009 at 7:28 pm

    Uh, Chairm, I saw #23. It gave me the impression that you’re the type who won’t take “yes” for an answer. When you’re not quibbling over manufactured points of disagreement, you’re suggesting that I’m “afraid” to state my position plainly. Chairm, you’re the last guy on the planet who should be pestering anyone to provide a plain statement about anything. Half the time I’ve got no idea what you’re going on about.

  34. Chairm said,

    May 15, 2009 at 7:46 am

    Chino the questions in #23 remain. You remain evasive. That is plain enough.

  35. Euripides said,

    May 15, 2009 at 8:58 am

    This is an astounding number of comments considering the pedestrian subject matter of the original post.

    I’m impressed that those who argue so much against the idea that harassment may and probably will occur against petitioners in Maine do so because they agree that harassment, finger pointing, shaming, and demagoguery are acceptable forms of the political process. There’s simply no adequate explanation to political harassment in our system of government, except as examples of the highest forms of political thuggery.

    Along this line, I find it impressive that Chino Blanco cares enough to travel all the way to Plymouth, Maine to harass petitioners and to argue so conscientiously on so many blogs connected with the DNA. Such a personal mission to destroy the institution of marriage and hijack the civil rights movement is a commendable achievement for any person.

  36. Chino Blanco said,

    May 15, 2009 at 2:48 pm

    Hey, Euripides, just in case you didn’t notice, this was meant to be an alarmist post (hence the big bog triangular or whatever-you-call-is that really

    But now you’re saying the whole thing is pedestrian?

  37. Euripides said,

    May 15, 2009 at 2:54 pm

    CB:

    Pedestrian in the sense that this is a typical topic for bb and a dead issue for gay activists. The number of comments for this particular subject impressed me, especially the numbers of negative comments.

  38. Mae said,

    May 16, 2009 at 11:58 am

    Op Ed, you’re so funny! It did work out kind of well though didn’t it?

  39. Chairm said,

    May 16, 2009 at 7:57 pm

    A petition-signer does not indicate his voting intentions. He might vote against the measure on the ballot. He might vote for it. But his signature would certainly indicate he favored having a vote by the People.

    Better than an opinion survey. Better than abidicating to the judiciary or to unrepresentative representatives.

    Validating his signature on a given petiition, like validating his identification for voting, are legitimate actions by a neutral government. That is so regardless of the issue on the ballot.

    Publicizing names and addresses and the like, not so much.

    Restraint is necessary for democracy to function fairly. But if one side feels entitled to play extreme hardball politics then they excuse everyone playing extreme hardball politics. On the marriage issue, the pro-marriage side’s restraint becomes a disadvantage when the pro-SSM side knows no moral limits on its behavior and agitation against democracy.

    The pro-SSM side has relied on abuses of judicial review and on abuses of partisanship in the legislatures. That and the promises of harrassment of petition-signers are all of a theme: gay identity politics that provide the impetus for the SSM campaign, first and last.

    * * *

    Meanwhile Chino thinks “yes” is an answer to the questions put to him. Either he knows the threats are immoral and lousy politics, or he thinks the threats are moral and wonderful politics, because of some unstated “useful” distinction between those who vote and those who sign petitions.

    Chino, why are you so fearful of plainly stating what you really mean to say?


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