The Nation.

Campaign 08

Amy Goodman, Others Detained Outside RNC

posted by John Nichols on 09/01/2008 @ 3:28pm

Democracy Now! host Amy Goodman was among 284 people detained outside the Republican National Convention here as police clashed with demonstrators on the streets of St. Paul.

Goodman was arrested near the XCel Center, where the convention opened Monday, at approximately 5 p.m. Minnesota time.

According to a statement issued Dennis Moynihan and Mike Burke of Democracy Now!:

Goodman was arrested while attempting to free two Democracy Now! producers who were being unlawfuly detained. They are Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar. Kouddous and Salazar were arrested while they carried out their journalistic duties in covering street demonstrations at the Republican National Convention. Goodman's crime appears to have been defending her colleagues and the freedom of the press.

Ramsey County Sherrif Bob Fletcher told Democracy Now! that Kouddous and Salazar were being arrested on suspicion of rioting. They are currently being held at the Ramsey County jail in St. Paul.

I was with Goodman earlier Monday afternoon, as she was reporting on the major anti-war demonstration. She and her crew were, as always, interviewing everyone they could in the calm, assured manner that has made the daily Democracy Now! program a widely-watched and well-regarded news programs on radio and cable television stations across the country.

Moynihan and Burke, in their statement, say that:

Democracy Now! stands by Goodman, Kouddous and Salazar and condemns this action by Twin Cities law enforcement as a clear violation of the freedom of the press and the First Amendment rights of these journalists.

They are urging journalists and concerned citizens to contact the office of St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman (651-266-8535) and the Ramsey County Jail (651-266-9350) and demand the immediate release of Goodman, Kouddous and Salazar.

The calls are important.

The American Civil Liberties Union and the National Lawyers Guild are also on the case.

UPDATE-Here is video of Goodman's arrest:

Comments (21)

  1. Yes, action. Action defined by watching lunatics act like children?

    Happy, I think you need a hobby.

    Posted by madlib at 09/01/2008 @ 4:11pm

  2. Hey HAPP...

    can you say "Eagleton"?

    JUNEAU, Alaska - Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the GOP vice presidential candidate, is being represented by an attorney in the investigation into the firing of her public safety commissioner.

    The Legislature is investigating whether Palin fired public safety commissioner Walt Monegan after he refused to fire a state trooper who had divorced Palin's sister.

    The Legislature's investigating committee disclosed the attorney's hiring on Monday. The committee released an e-mailed letter it had received from the lawyer on Friday, the day McCain announced she would be McCain's running mate.

    Posted by Maskdelta at 09/01/2008 @ 4:12pm

  3. Minnesotans are not the rollover weenies you think they are. They are still waiting for the shrub to come through on his promises to send aid after the bridge collapse.

    Posted by Pogge at 09/01/2008 @ 4:15pm

  4. Okay I promised myself I wouldn't login at work but...



    You think even with a Rep governor Bush was gonna shell out for that??? Come on, that's not supporting the troops!!!

    Posted by yutsano at 09/01/2008 @ 4:22pm

  5. McCain's pick for VP may have the opposite effect of what he was looking for by picking a woman to make all the whiny middle aged women feel good bout voting for a chauvinistic philandering old man.

    Having even the slight prospect of this woman being a heartbeat (an old cancer-having heartbeat) away from being prez, has just about sealed my own personal vote safely (no matter how reluctantly) with Obama.

    Hopefully the rest of the undecided voters will do the same and keep such a menace from being president.

    Posted by madlib at 09/01/2008 @ 4:31pm

  6. Posted by 2HAPPY at 09/01/2008 @ 4:23pm

    Especially when they refuse to fire the jerk who dumped her sister.

    Nice way to start a VP run...

    Posted by leftofcenter at 09/01/2008 @ 4:46pm

  7. Posted by 2HAPPY at 09/01/2008 @ 4:23pm

    Keep HOPE alive, HAPP!


    Posted by Maskdelta at 09/01/2008 @ 4:48pm

  8. BTW, the KEY thing to see if "Trooper-gate" or "Monagan-gate" or whatever DOES have "legs"....

    is how long Drudge and Fox News keep trying NOT to mention it!

    Posted by Maskdelta at 09/01/2008 @ 4:55pm

  9. It's refreshing to know Happ misses the point, as per usual. Officers of the state of Alaska may serve or be dismissed at the governor's will, but protraying an atmosphere where your will is law and anything that could bring about the slightest displeasure of the governor forces you to make unwise or foolish decisions looks corrupt just on its face. The purpose of that rule is to allow the governor to appoint officials to serve her interests, not to throw fits when they bother to stand up to her. We just had eight years of disastrous yes-menism and guess what? It looked bad when Georgie did it. Why? Because, quite simply, it's arbitrary and capricious. Even if it's legal, it still looks abusive.

    Posted by yutsano at 09/01/2008 @ 4:58pm

  10. Good the ACLU is involved. I can't believe more people are not completely appalled by this. Raids on the homes of suspected "conspirators" (whatever that means - sounds like a trumped up excuse to bully law-abiding citizens exercising their rights, including the right to privacy in their own homes) are bad enough, but this? Does anyone see how bad things have become? This should be all over the news. But it can't be, because the people who would have reported on it have been...arrested?

    Posted by bluebirdella at 09/01/2008 @ 5:17pm

  11. C'mon, what could possibly be better for Amy Goodman? this is a "dreams come true moment for her!"

    What's going to happen here? Amy spends a comfortable night in jail (compared to, say, Cuba) and is released... To cheers about her bravery.

    By the way, I am a fan of Democracy Now! Especially when it reveals true injustice in the world - which it does.

    I think Amy's arrest is just good theater. And she's the star.

    Posted by freiheit1 at 09/01/2008 @ 5:20pm

  12. This is outragous. Did you all notice shortly after Amy was arrested, one of the steorm troppers said to another protester off camera (or perhaps Amy's camera man) "You're under arrest. Stay right there." Under arrrest??? For what? Using a video camera in a public parking lot.

    I cry for America.

    Posted by bobforer at 09/01/2008 @ 7:00pm

  13. freiheiti.. so what is it? a dream for Amy Goodman "dreams come true"- to be arrested in doing her job? and that you say you are a fan of" Democracy Now" That i find hard to understand "good theater and she s is the star" that is a very odd point of view i think that pretty much says where your understanding is . if you where a little more honest and just spit it out...

    Posted by Mikechiron at 09/01/2008 @ 7:21pm

  14. I called the number listed for the jail and got a woman who said I'd called the wrong place and that I should be talking to the police department. I called the number she gave me for the St. Paul P.D. and got a woman who said I'd called the wrong place and that I should be calling the jail. She gave me a slightly different number from the one listed above - 654-266-9352 - and I spoke with a woman who said Amy Goodman had been released, but Sharif Abdel Kouddous and Nicole Salazar had not. She had no further information, but referred me to the Mayor of St. Paul, Chris Coleman, when I told her I wanted to make an official complaint about illegal arrests. I asked her how the mayor of the city was connected to the county jail. She said St. Paul PD had made the arrests.

    Posted by stremington at 09/01/2008 @ 7:24pm

  15. According to the Democracy Now website they were all released but Goodman was charged with "obstruction" and the other two were charged with something like conspiracy to commit felony riot - something totally contrived and absurd. I cannot believe the number of people who think this is no big deal - that all the prior police break-ins on peaceful citizens were okay, or that protestors deserve it anyway for being obnoxious and an embarrassment. The Democracy Now crew was just doing its job. There's no sense to any of this. You should be horrified - and if you're not, why aren't you? This reminds me of the day I got flipped off for carrying a sign that read, "Torture is Immoral." I actually got flipped off for criticizing the use of torture! This is where people's minds are at. I don't get it.

    Posted by bluebirdella at 09/01/2008 @ 8:15pm

  16. I heard that Amy Goodman was released, thankfully. But, this is an outrage, and it proves what a Facist state the US really is. And for anyones information, Amy Goodman is a giant in my eyes, always speaking truth to powwer, and she puts so many of the mainstream press to shame. This is disgusting, and just another example of the control of the people put on by the creeps who run this country. This place stinks and is a menace to correct thinking people. But, Amy is the type of person who should have an hour on a major network, instead of the likes of Gibson, Williams and definitely the lightweight, Kouric. If you can, everyone should tune in Democracy Now! tomorrow, to see the truth of what this place really is.

    Posted by CCNatreader1 at 09/01/2008 @ 8:47pm

  17. Placid Lake Woebegon has turned into a nasty police state.

    As a native of the Twin Cities, I still have countless friends there. Many began writing as early as Thursday about the aggressive, unlawful and illegal prior restraint war being waged by St. Paul police on people only planning to demonstrate -- they were in private residences when police goon squads descended dressed like the Road Warrior and began hauling people to the hoosegow.

    On Saturday, the trickle of messages became a torrent.

    To verify what friends were writing, I called the St. Paul Mayor's Office (651.266.8510) where I was directed to the police (651.291.1111). A PR woman for the cops said I had to talk to the Secret Service (612.348.1800), which refused to answer any questions but asked for the spelling of my name before telling me to call Homeland Security (202.282.8000) where repeated calls were not returned. I tracked down the cell phone number of someone in the St. Paul convention office of the Republican National Committee where the man who answered claimed to have no idea what I was talking about, helpfully suggesting I call the police before suddenly asking how I got the number. Ring around the rosy.

    It was like trying to get an answer from Dick Cheney's office. Translation: The e-mails were accurate.

    Bucolic Lake Woebegon has turned itself into a brutal police state, intent on arresting everyone including Garrison Keillor's three Norwegian bachelor farmers just in case. Apparently, civil liberties and the Bill of Rights got tossed into the Mississippi mud like the remains of a once-great bridge that used to span the river. And this surprises me why?

    Charley James

    Posted by TheCurmudgeon at 09/02/2008 @ 03:18am

  18. So the US is a police garrison state.

    What else is new?

    And the whole world is watching, yet once more.

    All US declarations of global moral leadership ring very hollow indeed abroad.

    And as the GOP sinks deeper down the toilet of its own making, the stink of desperation rises. McC's woeful vp choice adds just another odor.

    Posted by sloper at 09/02/2008 @ 03:59am

  19. Bush shows up for a photo op in Texas. Good thing the storm gave the RNC an excuse not to have him.

    McCain puts some cleaner in a box in Ohio at a site for disaster relief.

    The trophy wife is soon going to tire of the trophy running mate, as soon as she realizes this gal breeds like a rabbitt.

    William Kristol writes in the NYT on Monday that Palin is a great choice. Is this a case of Neocon Penis Envy?

    Obama showed up in Detroit for labor day. I guess he's celebrating the memory of the Amercian Worker.

    The only activity that mattered on Labor Day was the March in ST. Paul. And like NY in 04, if you strayed from the Freedom Zone, you got busted.

    And why didn't they haul in the reporters from Fox?

    Posted by geof01 at 09/02/2008 @ 12:08pm

  20. You may call Goodman's arrest street theater, as some have done above. But even five minutes behind bars is no picnic as I myself know from being unlawfully detained for four days by the Athens City and County police following the riots at Ohio University in 1970.

    Posted by Dan Lackey at 09/02/2008 @ 12:23pm

  21. Classic Amy Goodman and, probably more important, classic Democracy Now!.

    I do agree that this is a "dream-come-true" moment for Goodman, and I too do listen to Democracy Now. There is a place for it: DEFINITELY to hear voices of people not often heard on media, and SOMETIMES to hear objective portrayals of the issues those not-often-heard voices are commenting about. That is, Amy Goodman rarely gives her listeners both sides of a story; the problem there, of course (yes, of course!), is that people who enjoy having their own viewpoint validated are happy and are never challenged by Amy Goodman to hear the other side of a story that often (I almost wrote "always," but sometimes there is no real other side) has another legitimate side.

    In fact, want a perfect example of my problem with AG: look at the Democracy Now web site right now, as of, what, 10:30 a.m. MDT. There is that objective Amy Goodman giving one outraged side of the story. I looked and looked and looked for a more complete story to see what actually happened at the scene, and I couldn't find it anywhere. i would have thought that at least at Democracy Now they would be up-to-date with the complete story, but, not, not yet. They just have the outraged Amy story.

    I watched the video that's going around, and imagine this: I don't yet have an opinion about whether or not to be outraged myself. Why? Because, despite the already-expressed outrage (fascists? Really?), it doesn't show anything. Let's see, obviously the rules are to not cross that sidewalk or you'll get arrested ... Amy crosses sidewalk ... is told to go back ... she goes forward ... she gets arrested.

    I can wait to see a little bit more before I start throwing around the "fascist" term.

    Oh well, I'm beginning to bore myself ...

    Posted by pedalaforte at 09/02/2008 @ 12:30pm

Posting a comment requires registration. Click here to register

Popular Topics
Most Searched

Issues »

Most Emailed

Issues »


» The Beat

The Anti-Republican Republican Who Is Really a Republican | McCain distances himself from Bush rhetorically, but not ideologically or practically.
John Nichols

» The Notion

McCain's "Worst Speech" Panned by Pundits | John McCain's "shockingly bad" speech draws pundit fire.
Ari Melber

» Campaign 08

Obama Defends Community Organizing | "Why would that kind of work be ridiculous? Who are they fighting for? Who are they advocating for?"
John Nichols

» Capitolism

Community Organizers Fight Back | These people are not particularly practiced in taking things lying down.
Christopher Hayes

» The Dreyfuss Report

Cheney Blusters Through the Caucasus | Looking for oil. Unfortunately for Dick, Russia's in charge now.
Robert Dreyfuss

» Editor's Cut

The Sarah Palin Smokescreen | In order to win this election, the GOP needs voters to lose sight of where we are as a nation and how their leadership got us there.
Katrina vanden Heuvel

» ActNow!

Power Vote | New effort to build a green youth voter bloc of one million is growing.
Peter Rothberg

» And Another Thing

Sarah Palin, Wrong Woman for the Job | Seriously, people! Life is not a Lifetime movie.
Katha Pollitt