August 15th, 2007
01:49 PM ET
9 years ago

Anti-war posters draw fine threats from DC government

WASHINGTON (CNN) - The District of Columbia has threatened to levy a $10,000 fine against an anti-war group for plastering signs around the city but organizers argue the yellow and black posters conform to city regulations and the fines are politically motivated.

The posters promote a march planned by Answer Coalition - Act Now to Stop War and End Racism - for Sept. 15th to coincide with the release of Lt. Gen. David Patraeus' Iraq status report to President Bush.

The group is coming up against some sticky disapproval from city officials who say the signs use an illegal adhesive and are plastered in illegal areas.

"This is not an issue of content," said Linda Grant, D.C. Public Works public information officer. "This is about trying to reach a balance of allowing people to use the lampposts versus keeping the city neat." She say the problem isn't the signs, but its the stress required to remove the signs.

But the group hanging the posters said they used water soluble paste to put the posters on lamp posts, polls and traffic boxes.

"The District of Columbia municipal regulations allow for signs to be affixed to lampposts and affixed with an adhesive as long as it doesn't do damage," said Sarah Sloan of ANSWER. "We think it's politically motivated."

A DPW employee first noticed the sign over two weeks ago when the first tickets were written, Grant said.

Sloan said they received 64 tickets on Monday, and one ticket on Tuesday for a total of $10,000 dollars in fines.

The 72-hour period for removing the yellow and black signs has expired, but ANSWER said it has no intention of removing the signs.

"We have not removed signs," Sloan said. "They are posted in compliance and we've been in compliance for the six years we've been putting up signs."

- CNN contributor Ebonne Ruffins

Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. Barabas, Hot City, TX

    "Act now to stop war and end racism?" Sounds like a weird combination. Thats like saying "Save the babies and end pollution!"

    Are they just trying to tap into the 2 issues that will gather the most followers?

    Anyway, their orgainization sounds like a crock, but if the signs are in compliance with laws, then they should be allowed to post them. If not, tak-em down. Simple as that.

    August 15, 2007 03:02 pm at 3:02 pm |
  2. Jon, Sacramento ~ Ca

    Politically Motivated? Oh I see... if DC upholds city ordinances it's "politically motivated". Odd since the mayor of DC, Adrian Fenty, is a DEMOCRAT.

    August 15, 2007 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  3. gnuCLoS Asbury Park, NJ

    Politically motivated? I agree. Like they said, they've been putting up these same type of sign with a different messages, for 6 years. NOW they want to fine them?

    August 15, 2007 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  4. Rich, NYC

    Unbelievable. Its already bad enough that this administration has put a block on the media from showing any anti-war demonstrations and now they are trying to silence the anti-war movement even more. Only cuz their war is failing doesn't mean they have the right to silence protestors.

    August 15, 2007 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  5. David, Gilbert Arizona

    The District of Columbia has just provided Answer Coalition with national advertising. I would have no clue what Answer Coalition was or that they even existed had it not been for the legal action taken against the group by Washington D.C. and the subsequent media coverage.

    If the move by D.C. was covertly political it backfired in their face. If D.C. had said nothing and the march on Sept. 15 went ahead it would have registered nothing more than a blip on the media radar. D.C. succeeded in enlargening that media blip, which is probably what Answer wanted all along. How does it feel to be lead around like a lap dog D.C.?

    August 15, 2007 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  6. Jack Atlanta

    "Its already bad enough that this administration has put a block on the media from showing any anti-war demonstrations and now they are trying to silence the anti-war movement even more. Only cuz their war is failing doesn't mean they have the right to silence protestors."

    Oh dear lord.. do you REALLY think President Bush has ordered TV stations to not broadcast anti-war demonstrations?

    Do you think the White House is secretly orchestrating the effort to quiet this group?

    WHEN will the US create a basic-skills competency test to insure voters are competent and not severely delusional?

    August 15, 2007 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  7. Stephanie, Chicago, IL

    Most wars nowadays are racially/culturally motivated – two cultures who are very different and don't like each other or understand each other.

    The onging wars in the Middle East have increased racism against Middle Eastern people in the US.

    So yes, there is a connection. Stopping the war would decrease this kind of racism. More of an understanding about the underlying causes of racial/cultural tensions would help countries be more tolerent and able to work together.

    August 15, 2007 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  8. Steve, Washington, D.C.

    So they want to stop the war? How exactly do they intend to convince al-Qaeda and the radical militias to stop setting off bombs? If they have *that* answer, they should become military consultants, not rabble-rousing political celebrities. So if it's the war they don't like, their protest is a march against al-Qaeda, al Sadr, and the Iranian Quds forces?

    August 15, 2007 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  9. Lauren, Chepachet, RI

    Let's face it the real reason for the fine is that the whitehouse imperialists do not want the word to get out about the rally – but like is also stated this is the best way for the word to get out –

    Can't wait to go – IMPEACH – and Drive out the BUSH REGIME

    August 15, 2007 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  10. Tom Dedham, Mass

    Rich from NY, this administration has nothing to do with this.

    It is the Democratic Mayor of DC.

    Sorry to break it to you.

    August 16, 2007 09:26 am at 9:26 am |
  11. Danny Casolaro Martinsburg, Virginia

    Hi, Jon, from Sacramento!

    Let's continue, shall we?

    I can see you have learned nothing from the schooling I gave you in previous posts and are still (quite unbelievably) operating under the delusion that there is any difference whatsoever between the two political machines.

    The Democrats overwhelmingly support this war. Anything they say to the contrary is an absolute and bald-faced lie. They were voted into Congress as a referendum by the people to end the war-which they promised to do. Instead, they have virtually guaranteed that it will continue unabated for at least another 3 years-until Hillary is (s)elected (which I explained to you previously is already a foregone conclusion).

    So the mayor of DC being a Democrat has nothing to do with whether or not the action to destroy an anti-war group (which a $10,000 fine would most certainly do) was politically motivated.

    Democrats love war, Jon. Almost as much as Republicans. (Almost).

    The difference is, Republicans don't feel an iota of guilt about their corporatist-fascist and capitalistic ideology which promotes war while making them rich in the process.

    Democrats feel guilty about it-but that doesn't make them stop.

    War is business, Jon-nothing more, nothing less. Democrats like business, too, you know. Just look at their investment portfolios. Follow the money, Jon. Follow the money.

    August 16, 2007 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  12. LandoftheFree

    These people are nothing but hoolagans looking for a place to hang out on the dole for the day. They should be rounded up and put to work picking up the trash they've been spreading all over town.
    "Anti-Freedom for Others" is a better way to describe them.

    August 16, 2007 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  13. Jon, Sacramento ~ Ca

    Danny Casolaro ~ VA

    Gee Danny, hadn't seen you around. Thought you were either locked up or perhaps "detained" for questioning about your anarchists views.

    Sure – let's continue.

    Your position is that Republicans and Democrats are secretly in cohoots (example this group being fined for violating city ordinances).

    And your position is Hillary will be (s)elected because Clintons and Bushes are close friends and apart of the same conspiracy of the corporate faciasts to rob this country.

    And to make sure I didn't forget your previous assertions – Dick Cheney orchestrated 9/11.

    Am I correct in describing your views so far?

    Here is where I WILL agree with you – 2 points. 1) Politicians (all parties) will use age-old scare tactics, villify, demonize – whatever means necessary to get the "majority" vote. Politicians want POWER (hell most of them already have money). It is this ZEAL for power which puts parties at odds with each other and why I do not believe there is a secret code of cooperation to fleece the citizens.

    2) War is business. In some fashions – yes. It increases spending by the government, allows for more government contracts to replenish munitions, military supplies, rebuilding countries, etc. However, War is a means to eliminate hostile regimes and threats to our country. It's a means to bring stability to potentially unstable regions (not that it always works), and a way to stop injustices (murder of millions of Jews in WW2, ethnic cleansing, etc). War is ugly but necessary.

    Acknowledging this does not mean one should spring-board exponentially to extremist views of a covert political/military operation being controlled by Corporations.

    August 16, 2007 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  14. Joe, Berkeley CA

    ANSWER is a front group for various Communist (Marxist-Leninist) organizations. For that reason the more moderate anti-Iraq groups don't want anything to do with it.

    August 19, 2007 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |