WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Dancing Protesters Return To Jefferson Memorial In Defiance

Play associated audio
Protesters turned Jefferson Memorial into a dance hall on June 4 after Park Police arrested dancers at a previous protest.
Matt Laslo
Protesters turned Jefferson Memorial into a dance hall on June 4 after Park Police arrested dancers at a previous protest.

Last week five people were arrested for dancing at the Jefferson Memorial. One was forcibly taken to the ground, and the Park Police are investigating if his rights were violated.

To speak out against those arrests, more than 50 people turned the memorial into a dance hall on Saturday.

Park Police saw the movement gathering on Facebook and called in their SWAT unit. When they arrived, they booted everyone – including stunned tourists – out of the memorial.

The officers wrapped police tape around the area and claimed the dancers were disrupting the public. The protestors claimed their right to free speech was infringed upon. Still, organizer Adam Kokesh says it was a good day because no arrests occurred.

Michael Hagelberg, a visitor from Rochester, NY, lamented police actions more than the demonstrators' dance moves.

"It's joyful, it's happy, and it's fundamental rights that we have for speech and assembly and it's really unfortunate they try to make it into something else," says Hagelberg.

A federal appeal court recently ruled that it's illegal to dance at the Jefferson Memorial.


'It's A Surviving Tool': 'Native' Tells Satirical Stories Of Life In Israel

NPR's Kelly McEvers talks to author Sayed Kashua, an Israeli-Palestinian whose satirical weekly columns in Haaretz newspaper are collected in his new book called Native.

Chipotle's Food-Safety Woes? Don't Expect Sympathy From Rest Of Industry

Chipotle has scorned some mainstream farming practices, like GMOs and antibiotics. Now the fast-casual chain is taking hits over food safety, and past targets of its attacks are taking revenge.

In Trump's German Ancestral Village, The Locals Are Not Impressed

"Ich bin ein Kallstadter," Donald Trump likes to say. But many of the villagers are more proud of other famous American descendants with links to Kallstadt: the Heinz family, of ketchup fame.

Colonialism Comment Puts Facebook Under Scrutiny

A Facebook board member lambasted a decision by regulators in India, the social network's second-largest market. He thereby sparked new scrutiny of Facebook's intentions in that country.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.