Free Speech Tested In Hailey

Bob Baker, left, and Hadya Rafi, representatives of the Virginia-based Lyndon LaRouche Political Action Committee, wait for residents to speak to near the Hailey Post Office on Tuesday. The protestors called for a program to erect a wide network of dams across the West and into Canada, as well as the impeachment of President Barack Obama. Their presence and posters—including two that showed an Adolf Hitler-style moustache on the president—caused a backlash that prompted Mayor Fritz Haemmerle to call in the police to oversee the situation. “Sometimes it’s not nice, but it is what it is,” Haemmerle said Wednesday. “Words were exchanged between the protestors and local anti-protestors. It was getting animated between the two groups. Our purpose was to see there was no physical confrontation.” Bellevue resident Bill Pereira said he was deeply offended by the group’s messages. “I believe that when we elect a president, we need to get behind him,” Pereira said. “I was totally insulted. It was a slap in the face.” The LaRouche group has plans to visit every county in Idaho. Photo by Willy Cook

Friday, May 18, 2012

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