- McDonald's -

Non violent?

Posted by: Hugh Morris ( music plays as Stern enters the arena..., USA ) on February 24, 1999 at 14:17:09:

In Reply to: how very odd this conversation is! posted by ann on February 23, 1999 at 11:20:38:

: ann:
: how very odd this conversation is!!
: so if someone makes a non violent protest (one i wouldn't do myself)it seems like Macdonald staff would offer physical violence in return.
: is that right or have i read it wrong?

A non-violent protest is one matter, but the paint bombs are assault. To the protester, McDonald's is a faceless, soulless corporation, but the McDonald's manager took the paint-bombing as a personal attack. Most people, McDonald's managers included, will be inclined to strike back before stopping to think. Though it is rare, I knew a boy growing up who was healthy in every way, except he was deathly allergic to sulphur. The strike of a match would cause seizures, and nearly killed him the first time before the allergy was diagnosed. Most stink bombs I've seen are vials of ammonium sulfide, which would do him no good at all if he happened by.

Legally, McDoanld's (and any other establishment) is not obligated to allow anybody inside they don't want there. That's why some reataurants (not McDonald's, of course) have dress codes; this ensures you have enough money to afford their prices. I don't know what McDoanld's official policy is on bouncing people out, but it's probably something along the lines of leaving people to themselves for the most part, but someone who is abusive or annoying should be politely but firmly asked to leave. When they refuse, don't soil your hands; the police will show them the door. This establishes the legal threshhold for tresspassing--that is, staying on someone else's property after being personally asked by the owner or a representative of the owner to leave. That's how a "No Trespassing" sign does not give the owner the right to shoot anyone who ventures onto their land; the argument can always be made that the wanderer didn't see the sign, or perhaps didn't understand it.

So, non-violent protests would probably be relegated to a public right-of-way, perhaps the sidewalk, where McDonald's would have no say over the actions of the prptestors. Just be sure you're not in England if you plan to distribute leaflets.

Go Away,

Hugh Morris

McSpotlight: It's now safe to hand out leaflets in England; the very last thing McDonald's want is a PR disaster like the last one ;)

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