...otherwise entitled "Robbyn's Rules of Commenting." ;-)
A day or so ago, I posted a question trying to verify if an email I'd received was correct. It stated that Manna Storehouse, located in a private home, had been raided and their inventory and computers, etc, confiscated while the family was held at gunpoint. The reason I was particularly interested in this story is because the family business/buying co-op is the sort that helps others buy grassfed meats and organic foods at affordable prices. I was wanting to separate the fact from the fiction.
I am waiting for an official press release, which will come soon. When it does, I'll post it.
I have concerns for our constitutional rights and freedoms and that there may be some blatant injustices in small farmers, etc, being targeted in differing ways. I found it very difficult to believe that a dispute over licensing details could have actually resulted in a family's home being searched in the way it seems (by the accounts I've read) to have been. I'm still waiting for details.
An online friend of mine posted her concerns that this particular news story be correctly verified, and expressed her personal perspective as the wife of a law enforcement officer who each day is often required enforce the law while at the same time protecting himself. It is the reality of every family member of loved ones in law enforcement that their job requires the risk of their own lives. Her comments spoke to this and to the fact that often police are following orders. She also stated that she has a concern that farmers and homesteaders are being unfairly targeted more and more. She made her comments respectfully. They reflected her opinions, and the last time I looked, this is what our Constitution protects the right to express. Therefore, I thank her. I am thankful for our Constitution.
As a rule, I seldom edit or refuse to publish comments based on whether I agree or not with them. This will be one of those exceptions. Here is why--
I came home from work to an In Box with several more comments, all of which I appreciated reading. The part I had a problem with was that rather than address the content of my post, which was to get to the bottom of what really happened at Manna Storehouse, it began to be a dialogue among the commenters. Whatever has really happened, it has touched a nerve and involves very important issues. These issues include the role of law enforcement, Constitutional rights, the targeting of small groups (even families) without grounds or due process, potential abuses of privacy and other rights in the name of "security" or "compliance," and the ethical conundrum of those involved (law enforcement, etc) when the choice must be made to participate (or not) if it's obvious an injustice is being perpetrated under the guise of law.
These are tremendously important concerns!
Though I had no idea this would bring about such important discussion, I welcome it...within the confines of respect. That's the rule here... you can say hard things and I don't have to agree with you, nor do any commenters have to agree with each other. BUT. It has to be expressed respectfully.
I know...if you're the friends of the family who just got held at gunpoint, you're entitled to rant. Please do! But let's put things on the table without attacking others. That's my requirement.
I did not post the following comments in full, not because I wish to edit the convictions behind them, but because they became personal to one of the commentors, going beyond the realm of this blog in its ability to adequately foster dialogue. I thought they were borderline hostile, though it was probably wasn't meant personally. But to me, it did sound a bit too personal to other commenter's thoughts...an attack is different than dialoguing.
Here are some of the concerns I can post, excerpted from some of the comments in my In Box. I did not include whatever other valid parts of their comments that were directed to prior commentors. The discussion is out on the table for all, not to target an individual. My thanks to those who took the time to express your concerns:
#1 I wonder to what extremes tactical teams will just do their jobs... At some point, individuals have to be responsible for their actions which further tyranny, "just following orders" is no excuse.
#2 (sic throughout) I'm baffeled at the posted dialog. What have we come to? Yes, it's true. This family, who is providing a healthy source of organic FOOD, YES FOOD, NOT DRUGS or any kind of illegal product, was stormed upon by a SWAT team, in full riot gear, and had fully automatic guns pointed at them, including the children. No phone call, no explenation. Private property was taken, including a signifcant amount of food, valued at possibly $10,000.00. Yes, IT'S TRUE. This is a perfect example of the tyranny we can expect from our goverment in the days to come. THEY WERE GROWING HEATHLY FOOD. And every civil right we claim to cherish in this country was violated. What about those children? Did they deserve that experience? What did that teach them about thier country, thier leaders, thier goverment, thier law enforcment?
#3 At some point, even the ordinary swat team guy must take responsibility for what he does.
The point of some of the edited-out portions pointed to historical injustices (in particular the holocaust) and raised the issue of individual responsibility vs. following commands. Several folks stated this in various ways. I edited another part that used a religious rebuke in an insulting way. If you want to direct it to me, I'm fine with that...I initiated the topic. But leave heavyhanded personal remarks to other commentors out of it. I defend your own right to comment on my blog without being insulted as well.
These are important issues, and often emotional ones.
My heartfelt thanks to all who feel protective of our rights and our freedoms and who are hopping mad at injustice. We have every right to be.
I am thankful for our Constitution, for the law enforcement in this country who enforce it, and the freedom we have to appeal within that system to right any injustices or corruptions both within and without. There is much that needs to change.
I'd like to get the facts before going any further with this.
Thank you, Dina, for your link. :) I did see it. I'm awaiting the press release from the actual family, when they have made it official.
And right now, like Forrest Gump, that's all I have to say about that.