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"Extremists"

 Hi VFP & Peace Allies,

You may or may not know that the Massachusetts ACLU and the National Lawyers Guild have released a report called "Policing Dissent"
 
In 2011, the ACLU of Massachusetts and the National Lawyers Guild Massachusetts chapter sued the Boston Police Department to obtain files on peaceful protestors. They first asked, then submitted a Freedom of Information request, both of which were ignored. Then they sued.
 
Documents and video surveillance tapes obtained by the ACLU of Massachusetts and the National Lawyers Guild, Massachusetts Chapter--after suing for access on behalf of five peace groups, four activists and Political Research Associates--show that officers assigned to the Boston Regional Intelligence Center at the Boston Police Department are collecting and keeping information about constitutionally protected speech and political activity. The documents provide the public with its first glimpse into the political surveillance practices of the Boston Police Department.
 
You can find the report at: http://aclum.org/policing_dissent
 
The Smedley Butler Brigade, Chapter 9 was one of those groups named in the law suit.
 
In the documents obtained by the ACLU and the NLG the Smedleys are refereed to as an "Extremists Organization". We recently had a fundraiser and in introducing the song below I said that according to the Boston Police we were an "Extremist Organization" - that got a big cheer and applause.
 
FYI - After 9/11 there was a whole lot of money allocated to create what are know as "Regional Intelligence Centers" there are seventy-five of these little babies scattered across the U.S. Why here in Massachusetts we have two, one in western Mass and the other just outside of Boston known as the Boston Regional Intelligence Center or better known as the "BRIC". I tell you this because it is in the song.

I have not been playing much music lately but was inspired to write a song called, "Extremists" and preformed it at our fundraiser in November at Johnny D's a great little club in Somerville, MA., just outside of Boston. Jesse Perrier, one of our members who does a lot of filming for our chapter filmed my litte performance and placed it on youtube. Like I said, I have not been performing so it is a little rough, but you will get the message. 


Enjoy and please pass it on to your members, allies and friends.
Thanks,
Pat Scanlon 
Here are the words to the song just in case you play the guitar.
 
Extremists
 
Chorus
They call us all extremists
Cause we’re out here in the street
How unpatriotic, Veterans For Peace
They say “we better watch them, like never before”
Cause there’s nothing more dangerous
Than Veterans Against War
 
Verse
So they stand on every corner, with their cameras in their hands
Taking film, snapping pictures of everything they can
Upload photos, write reports, on everything they saw
Protecting all our citizens from folks who broke no law
 
They’ve been watching us so long, they know us to our core
They know we’re peaceful veterans, who know the cost of war
Because we’ve seen the horror, and the price we always pay
They have to document everything we do and say
 
“Wars a Racket” Smedley said, eighty years ago
Thirty years of fighting, he once ran the show
A two star major general, who had something to say
When we go to war, a few profit, many pay
 
They’ve got Home Land Security, FBI and DIA
State and local police, don’t forget the CIA
Why, we are so important, a clear danger to the land
Can’t let this love and peace thing, get too far out of hand
 
They got their Bric, play all their tricks, wasting all our dough
All those files and pictures, with nothing much to show
So we raise our voices here today, to let them know it’s time
Stop hassling the peace groups, go back to fighting crime
 
 
© Patrick J. Scanlon 2012
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