Via my brother's White House Briefing comes a dead-pan rendition of this very very disturbing story:
John Myers writes in the local paper, the Duluth News Tribune: “The president entered the DECC Arena just before 6 p.m., nearly 10 minutes ahead of schedule, to darkened lights, blaring music and a giant W-shaped spotlight that moved across the crowd.
“As the president entered the Arena, screams erupted among his raucous supporters who had waited in line for tickets, waited in line to clear security, then waited still longer for the president's arrival.”
Chris Hamilton of the Duluth paper adds: “It was a tightly controlled event staffed by dozens of volunteers with laminated badges. The Secret Service set up metal detectors and had mug shots of local anti-Bush activists Joel Kilgour and Joel Sipress.”
But it's Michael Larson they should have been watching for.
As Myers reports: “Bush's speech was interrupted for a few seconds when a protester, Michael Larson of Duluth, stood up in an aisle and yelled, 'Shame on you.' Bush stopped speaking only briefly and didn't acknowledge Larson, who was wearing a white T-shirt with fake blood painted on it. Larson was immediately ushered out by police and Secret Service. He was ticketed and released by police.”
Wait a minute.
The Secret Service blocks dissidents from attending a public meeting based on the content of their speech?!? That's vile.
Heckling gets you forcibly ejected by cops? And ticketed? (This only rates one “?” as I can imagine how this might be 'creating a public nuisance' or something, but given that it's unlikley that an enraptured pro-Bush interruption would cause an arrest, I still think there's an issue here.)