The RNC isn’t over and won’t be for a long time in the Twin Cities. These developments over the last few days are worth noting:
The Minneapolis City Council, according to MPR’s Brandt Williams, will get a report on how the police department handled their end of the protests during the Republican National Convention. But the fix may be in since the police department is doing the report and City Council member Paul Ostrow successfully led the the fight to kill an effort by colleague Cam Gordon for a specific accounting.
“I personally don’t see a need for council action,” Ostrow said. “I’m going to be blunt about this, because I know what the headlines are going to be, ‘City Council calls for investigation of Minneapolis police department.’ We don’t need an investigation of the Minneapolis police department when the Minneapolis police department is already saying they’re moving forward on an After Action report.”
Here’s the current “investigation” tally: St. Paul will have one, but it won’t look at claims of police misconduct. A City Council member, who has made no secret of his distaste for the police actions, will hold a hearing.
In Minneapolis, Mayor R.T. Rybak wants the city’s civil rights office to review the method of arrests and citations.
Media watcher Brian Lambert, meanwhile, acknowledges he didn’t monitor the offerings of local TV and radio stations because he was “in the RNC bubble,” but he says he knows what was going on anyway:
The picture here is fairly clear. The RNC with its promotional potential ( … money) for our cities, combined with over-the-top police state preparation and intimidation, appears to have cowed not just politicians but also quite a few self-professed brave media voices into avoiding anything that could be construed as consorting with or encouraging the enemy.
Lambert, as you probably figured out, says protester voices didn’t get heard in the cacophony of chatty police and politicians.
Why were they protesting again?
Impeachment, according to one of them. Jodin Morey posted a long accounting of the Poor People’s March — aka “the Tuesday protest” — on his blog this week:
Next, the lead organizer got on the shoulders of another marcher and through a bullhorn announced to the protesters that she was going to deliver a citizen’s arrest to the doors of the Xcel Energy Center for crimes against humanity. She made us raise our right hands again and promise that we would stay right where we were and to be peaceful. Everyone I could see raised their hands and repeated the promise back to her. Then she went to the free speech gate that separated us from the front doors of the Xcel Energy Center. She spoke through her bullhorn to the nearest police officer, who was dressed in riot gear.
Even the media is going to review its actions in the wake of the protests. The Society Professional Journalists is holding a forum on Monday to examine why journalists got arrested and how reporters can do their jobs in the future. City leaders and law enforcement officials have been invited to participate.
Meanwhile the “let’s do this again sometime” movement slowed somewhat on Wednesday when St. Paul business owners got together to discuss their experiences. Said one business owner:
“We should have been told that the delegates were going to get in their buses, and get bused right to the front door, and right after the event, they were going to be bused right from the front door of the Xcel Energy Center right back to Minneapolis.”
On the other hand, four other conventions have been booked since the RNC, according to officials. And another suggested there was no pricetag on the value of Chris Matthews proclaiming Rice Park, “the most beautiful spot in the world.” A few days later, Matthews lost his gig at MSNBC for other reasons.