Sure, we all have the freedom of speech and assembly, but thereâ€™s absolutely nothing in the Constitution about the right to get in unnecessary fights with cops.
And thatâ€™s exactly what happened on Saturday when 20 Denver Occupy Wall Street protesters were arrested after a confrontation with Denver police.
Two of the protesters were held for felony charges after knocking an officer off of a motorcycle, and many others were arrested after smaller scuffles, according to the Denver Post.
Weâ€™re all about a little bit of civil disobedience, since battles with the police have been defining moments of successful protests in the past, but getting in fights with cops is not suddenly going to give Occupy Wall Street legitimacy, something that probably motivated some of the protesters to cause trouble in the first place.
We understand that protesters feel wronged by the 1 percent and want to act out (or whatever Occupyâ€™s about), but theyâ€™ve got to have a purpose behind it, something that, given the information we have, the protesters lacked, aside from simply the presence of police at the protests.
By the same token, Denver Police needs to stop over-reacting to the protesters who, when members of the Editorial Board visited Denver and saw Occupy firsthand, seemed more like homeless people playing music in a park than a genuine threat to public safety.
It doesnâ€™t look like Occupyâ€™s going anywhere anytime soon, and to avoid future altercations between police and protesters, both parties need to chill out.