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Let’s have an employee meeting

Bredesen is none too happy that the Tennessee Firearms Association wants names of the law enforcement officers standing behind him during his veto ceremony. I’m still figuring they were ordered to be there for the political posturing. But Bredesen gets his righteous indignation on at the premise that citizens demand accountability from public officials:

To single out these law enforcement officers: letís ask their names; letís ask their addresses just smacks of intimidation. Itís not American; I donít think it is Tennessean, I think they should stop it.

Let me explain it to you, Sparky. These officers, like you, work for me. I pay your salary. And theirs. You and those officers are my employees and, frankly, I have some requirements for my employees . I expect them to respect my rights. And I expect those of my employees who are elected to vote the way I want them to. Or I will take appropriate action (like not voting for those elected officials, writing letters, supporting opponents, legal action, etc.). When a citizen demands accountability from public officials and employees, it’s not intimidation. It’s being a good citizen. And it’s very American and very Tennessean. That you don’t understand that difference shows how little you understand what it is to be American or Tennessean.

But, still, I think it’s a safe bet that the officers were ordered to be there. I understand that happens a lot.

Update and bump: Campfield:

It is now coming out that several of those police chefs may not have been as excited about the governors over ride on the gun bill as he would like people to believe.

We are now finding out they were all in town for some convention or other and were asked to come over and meet the governor during a break. Of course most of them went. When they got there they were all piled in together and finally told what it was about just shortly before the signing of his veto with them as the backdrop.

They did not come to the event knowing they were about to be used.

16 Responses to “Let’s have an employee meeting”

  1. Ron W Says:

    “These officers, like you, work for me. I pay your salary. And theirs. You and those officers are my employees and, frankly, I have some requirements for my employees . I expect them to respect my rights.”

    WELL SAID!!!!

    On this legislation, the Govenor simply needs to read Article I, Section 26 of the Tennessee Constitution’s DECLARATION OF RIGHTS and sign the bill! The only “delegated powers” of the State re: the RKBA is HOW, not whether, we carry them, concealed, open, holstered, etc “with a view to prevent crime”

  2. Bitter Says:

    I’ll be honest (and I’m sure it will make me hated even more in the community) and say that I thought it was a bad idea to go after the police officers so publicly before anyone knew what was going on. The goal was intimidation. While I’m fine with turning up pressure on public officials, I also know the reality of how many of these political theater events are put together and that not everyone there likely agreed.

    Now I just hope that any efforts to identify law enforcement who don’t stand up for our rights are done cautiously and without presuming every officer (or even chief) is guilty. Confirm, then go public. Unfortunately, many of our law enforcement officers are taken advantage of by the political class who have the power to hire/fire and/or make their professional lives hell. My default is to not give a damn about the individual officers involved (unless they speak out on the issue) and just go after the politician for playing politics with law enforcement.

  3. Rustmeister Says:

    Clenched fist salute to you, sir.

  4. _Jon Says:

    Then again, a little pressure on the LEO (not much – this is probably enough) will make them question what they are being asked to prop for.

    Ya know, be aware of your surroundings and situations and all that…

  5. Wolfwood Says:

    To be clear, are we talking about police brass or just troopers? If it’s the brass, get their names. If they want to disavow knowing what was going on then that’s fine and all’s well. If they want to apologize, that’s fine as well. This is a democratic republic and there should be plenty of transparency.

  6. Joe Mama Says:

    “To single out these concealed handgun permit holders: letís ask their names; letís ask their addresses just smacks of intimidation. Itís not American; I donít think it is Tennessean, I think they should stop it.”

    Fixed it for you!

  7. JKB Says:

    Why so afraid? These guys are supposedly trained and possibly experienced with handling aggressive criminals but now they cower at the thought of being named for participating a public act. I believe these District Attorneys would say that there was no expectation of privacy. Wanna bet many of these same law enforcement officials have complied a list of names and addresses of those who attend pro-gun rallies or have a carry permit.

    Of course, when they use their unilaterally official powers to name and shame an individual who may express a viewpoint it isn’t intimidation but when a bunch of voters want to act in concert to hold them accountable for their public acts, it is intimidating.

  8. Mikee Says:

    When a police officer (even an appointed chief) is asked to posture publicly in support of an elected official’s political position, that is definitive government intimidation.

    A picture of police officers and the governor together says the police will enforce the governor’s political actions, despite the legislature’s efforts to override the governor’s actions.

    How the governor thought this would not splash muck all over him, and all over those police officials he apparently snookered into an intimidating photo op, is beyond me. But then again, I don’t live in TN, I live in TX. So maybe y’all do things differently there, sort of like in France or something….

  9. LissaKay Says:

    Hey Unc … what the heck is going on over at Michael’s place? He’s brought on a co-blogger of the hystero-lefty-liberal type, and now he’s seemed to have had a major change of view himself. He quoted part of this post, out of context, using it to claim some sort of irony between the issue of HCP holders protesting newspaper publishing of the databases, and this issue of demanding transparency in the dealings of public servants. See also his response to Rich’s comment on the Shoot out at Applebees post that was written by his new co-blogger.

    Frankly, I am quite puzzled and disappointed in this turn of events and attitude.

  10. Robohobo Says:

    Mikee said: “So maybe yíall do things differently there, sort of like in France or somethingÖ”

    Ouch, that’s gonna leave a mark!

    If the police were snookered into this then the Governor needs to have his talleywhacker spanked by the citizens of Tn. Smacks of police state tactics.

  11. Harold Says:

    Bitter (and others): What prevented these officers from walking out when they learned they were being used as political props for something in theory they didn’t believe in?

  12. ATLien Says:

    Betraying the public trust as an executive in government or as an elected representative should be a form of high treason. Politicians don’t fear their constituents anymore. I bet they’d fear a rope, though.

  13. Ninth Stage Says:

    Nashville’s channel 5 has a poll on whether the legislature should override Bredesen’s veto. Vote here:

  14. Archelon Says:

    Actually, public servants are supposed to be intimidated over their behavior in the discharge of their duties by the citizens. That’s what accountability is. (This obviously excludes the kind of intimidation that the Bredesen is not talking about–i.e., fear for their physical safety.) If they are intimidated by the citizenry regularly, then I think they should start examining their behavior.

  15. Linoge Says:

    They are public officials… hell, they even wear frakking name-tags. If they are doing something in their official capacity as public officials (which I can only imagine they were, given that they were in uniform), then we have every right to hold them accountable for those actions, which includes, but is not limited to, identifying them by name. Governor Phil is now claiming the LEOs knew what they were doing, but, regardless, if they were given warning, and did not leave, that tells you something right there.

  16. straightarrow Says:

    It is in no way intimidation to ask the names of public officials photographed at a political event in which the rules of society are being addressed. It is simply accountability in action. If any of these people do not support Bredeson’s veto, how will we ever know if we don’t whom to ask? How will they ever be able to address the situation of their support or lack of support for Bredeson’s veto if we don’t ask them? How will anyone know for whom to vote if their identities or the identities of their appointers are not known. The only intimidation going on here is Bredeson playing the “intimidation” card in order stop accountability of public officials.

    There are some, though, who see any questioning of “authority” as shameful and “over the top” and “intimidating” and “reckless”. Of course, those are the same people who get hysterical at the thought of “conversation”.

    That warm water washing down your backs is not rain.

Remember, I do this to entertain me, not you.

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