Friday, February 01, 2008

Tell it to the Marines

Apparently, what the Ber(ser)keley City Council wants to tell them is "Go away."
Members of the Berkeley City Council showed their opposition to a Marine Corps recruiting office in Downtown Berkeley last night.

Council members supported the two resolutions-one supporting anti-war protests and the other criticizing military recruitment practices-citing opposition to the war in Iraq, deceptive recruitment practices and the right to protest...

The other resolution more directly criticizes the presence of the center in Berkeley. The city manager was directed to send a letter to the U.S. Marine Corps saying they are "uninvited and unwelcome intruders" in the city.

In addition, the city attorney has been directed to investigate whether the city's anti-discrimination laws can be enforced at the center, based on the military's consideration of sexual orientation in hiring...

The City Council's decision echoes mounting opposition to military recruitment in the Berkeley.

Local activists have proposed an initiative for the November 2008 elections that would require military recruiting centers to acquire a special use permit.

"The Marines ought to have better sense than to come here," [Councilmember Betty] Olds said.

Well, if the city really feels that way, let them run out the Marines. Whereupon, if we had a government with even the hint of a testicle, every nickel of federal money would be immediately cut off from any individual, business or government entity operating or residing within the city limits. Fair is fair, after all.

A/T to the wonderful Cassandra, who apparently snuck back into theblogosphere when I wasn't looking. Back in the sidebar she goes.

Update: Here's a story that shows Berkeley's contempt even more clearly.
Having failed in recent years to impeach President Bush and stop the war in Afghanistan, members of the City Council approved a resolution that encourages people to nonviolently “impede, passively or actively,” the work of the recruiters.

To that end, the council awarded the group, Code Pink, exclusive use of the parking spot for four hours one afternoon each week, for the next six months, to stage its protests. “If you’re going to join the Marines, you’re going to join the Marines,” said Zanna Joi, an activist with Code Pink, which favors cotton-candy-colored garb and in-your-face tactics. “But you don’t have to join the Marines from our town.”

In taking on the Marines, the council also directed the city attorney to investigate legal means of ousting the recruiting station, calling the Marines “uninvited and unwelcome intruders” in this bastion of liberal politics, 1960s free speech and high-minded nonbinding resolutions.

Is there any legal way the city of Berkeley can be relieved of military protection, since they clearly don't want it?

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