How crazy is it that stickers made to protest the draconian arrest of Christians singing psalms outdoors led to the arrests of the pastor’s son and grandkids?
A key detail for the full understanding of this story is that a citywide mask mandate was being aggressively enforced in a little place called Moscow, Idaho. The city’s stance and the church opposition to their heavy-handed tactics set the stage for a conflict that almost writes itself.
But who is involved here?
Frequent readers of ClashDaily may already be familiar with the name Douglas Wilson. He was one of the Christians willing to publicly debate Christopher Hitchens while he was still among us, and he was more recently in the news last September for when his church met outside of City Hall to sing psalms, and the police came to make arrests.
After members of the church were arrested unjustly, free citizens wanted their voice heard. They got creative and upped their game. So did the city’s enforcement practices.
This was not the last we would hear about their mask mandate, nor would it be the last arrest they would make, either.
In their own words:
Before we explain the most recent development, we’ll need two more pieces of information.
The first is Doug Wilson getting us quickly up to speed…
To remind you, the city of Moscow to date has spent tens of thousands of dollars in pursuit of Justice As They Understand It, which is, as I understand it, threatening our people with up to six years in jail for affixing stickers to poles that were already covered with stickers.
You see, the problem with these stickers is that they contained an implied criticism of our elected officials. And anybody who is even remotely familiar with our constitutional protections of free speech must know that this right to free speech—which is so precious to us that nobody is being allowed to even take it out of the box anymore—was intended by the Founders to protect things like pornography and performance art, and never criticism of our overworked and underpaid public servants. People who think that the right to free speech covers criticism of official government actions must be red-pilling somehow. Or maybe I have something inverted in some way.
Nevertheless, even though these stickers were not prohibited by the ordinance concerned, and even though the city has never prosecuted anybody who really did transgress the terms of the ordinance, such as various notorious yard sale outlaws, they have shown a real determination to pursue this thing.
And thus it has come to pass that they don’t just have a little egg on the face, but rather are face down, once again, in an oven omelet, made by them, in their own kitchen. –DouglasWilson
Secondly, The Daily Wire explains more about the stickers’ backstory.
The incident at the outdoor worship event incensed members of the church, including Gabriel’s brother, Aaron. “Those arrests really pushed me over the brink,” Aaron said in a recent press release. “Watching my brother being cuffed at a psalm sing was rough. It’s still hard for me to comprehend that our local police department would do something so clearly unconstitutional and illegal, no matter how much the city council wanted them to.”
Aaron, a literary agent as well as a television and film producer, is business partners with Nathan Wilson. “My business partner’s brother gets arrested at a psalm sing,” Nathan said. “Aaron and I both felt the need to do something. We talked about using our resources to sue the city, but we settled on something more low-key. Funnier. Our company, Gorilla Poet Productions, produced protest stickers instead.”
“We had a desire to protest police tactics and enforcement tactics that were illegal,” Wilson said, claiming the local police often “arrest first and then figure out the legalities later.” Not wanting to contribute to the already tense powder keg their small town had become, however, Wilson explained how he and Rench instead decided to produce about 650 protest stickers, some of which read, “Soviet Moscow.” Others made fun of the town’s mask mandate slogan, reading: “Soviet Moscow — Enforced Because We Care.”
…Police were apparently tipped off when Wilson’s 18-year-old son, Rory, was seen going around Moscow with his 14-year-old brother slapping the stickers on city poles. “That’s when cops got upset,” Wilson said. “But they were non-damaging vinyl stickers that were going up in protest of police enforcement of the mask order—you know, threatening people with jail time, et cetera, arresting people at a psalm sing.” — DAILYWIRE
This was what the City had said on their billboards:
And here are the stickers that Wilson’s son and grandsons were slapping on phone poles.
Here is an example of the phone pole covered in stickers that these vinyl non-damaging stickers were somehow at risk of ‘vandalizing’.
So they went to the very spot where BLM had done a chalk message in their town the previous summer, one that remained in place until the rain washed it away, and they did their own chalk message…
And then they waited to see what would happen next. But we already know how this story ends, don’t we?
Here is a city worker — no fault of his own, he just executed the decisions that someone else has a stick up their ass over prioritizing this way — wiping it away into oblivion.
Can you imagine the outrage these same City Hall types would have had if even a private citizen had washed away a left-leaning protest slogan as a way of counter-protesting the chalk message?
But reminding the people of Moscow how Soviet their city hall’s tendencies are? That’s going too far. Off to the gulags with you!
For anyone curious and wanting to take up this cause those soviet stickers ARE for sale (Be a damned shame if that message went national, wouldn’t it?), and their court costs DO have a crowdfunding mechanism.
Cross-posted with Clash Daily
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