Copblock at Libertopia
This past weekend, Copblock participated in Libertopia, which took place at Humphrey’s Half Moon Inn in San Diego, CA. Humphrey’s is a lush hotel reminiscent of a Polynesian resort, located on Shelter Island in San Diego.
Stefan Molyneux was Master of Ceremonies, and kicked off the event with an opening speech on Friday morning, as Drew, Nick, and I set up shop and offered a wide variety of T-shirts, sweatshirts, informational material, pins, hats, and other gear. All weekend, we handed out fliers on tips for interacting with police, ways to get involved with Copblock, and talked to attendees about police accountability. We met many intriguing and enthusiastic people who were interested in and supportive of Copblock’s efforts to document police and raise awareness about police brutality.
Others exhibitors included Freedoms Phoenix, Antiwar.com, Students For Liberty, The Free State Project, Fr33minds.com, LOLA, among others.
The event, which was October 21-23, featured many fantastic speakers. To see some of the speeches, just go to Youtube.com and search “Libertopia.” Of particular relevance was Marc J. Victor, a criminal defense attorney,who spoke extensively about why you should never talk to cops, regardless of whether you think you are guilty or not. In addition, Anthony Gregory lectured on The Case for Abolishing Police, and Bill Buppert talked about Private Security in the Post-State World.
During the down times, attendees freely smoked weed, ate marijuana lollipops, openly carried firearms, and drank. Unfortunately, other hotel guests complained about the open carry of firearms, and on Saturday, the hotel asked Libertopia open carriers to refrain from doing so. During an open mic moment, attendees were given an opportunity to share any thoughts, suggestions, ideas, or promote their organizations. Particularly striking to me was one guy from Pennsylvania. Perhaps the fact that he was surrounded by freedom-lovers had warped his view of the state of California – but he said something to the effect that California seemed to be a refreshing slice of freedom. As Drew correctly stated, “California is a statist’s wet dream,” so I can only imagine how bad Pennsylvania must be!
On Saturday night, Drew and Nick helped me and some friends put on a quick Copblock karaoke session in between the bands that were performing. Video will follow soon, but for now feel free to check out Drew’s badass version of it from Porcfest (warning: not for children’s ears).
On the last day of Libertopia, some cops walked in, uninvited. They swaggered across the exhibitor area towards the Copblock booth and did a double take when they saw our sign. I said “Hello, officer” to each one as he approached, but otherwise ignored them. One of them took a “Badges Don’t Grant Extra Rights” business card.
Overall, Libertopia was an awesome time. If you didn’t make it this year, hopefully you can come next year. It will be at the same location, at Humphrey’s, October 19-21, 2012.