HARRISBURG - In a press conference earlier today, Governor Ed Rendell strongly condemned the surveillance of peaceful protests after revelations that his homeland security director had been distributing anti-terrorism bulletins that included reports on activists. Along with opponents of Marcellus Shale drilling, others identified as potential 'threats' included a lesbian and gay pride festival and a rally hosted by education advocates in support of legislation favored by Rendell.
The following statement can be attributed to Andy Hoover, Legislative Director, ACLU of Pennsylvania:
"Governor Rendell's outrage over this incident is a victory for free speech in Pennsylvania. For years, local, state, and federal officials have been overreacting and treating protestors like criminals. Simply gathering to discuss or protest a social issue is not only not a crime but is a part of the American ideal of democracy. The governor understands that, and we applaud him for his stance."