This Is What Democracy Looks Like pt.1

Tim DeChristopher_Sentencing_1

“I’m not saying any of this to ask you for mercy, but to ask you to join me.  If you side with [prosecuting attorney] Mr Huber and believe that your role is to discourage citizens from holding their government accountable, then you should follow his recommendations and lock me away.  I certainly don’t want that.  I have no desire to go to prison, and any assertion that I want to be even a temporary martyr is false.  I want you to join me in standing up for the right and responsibility of citizens to challenge their government.  I want you to join me in valuing this country’s rich history of nonviolent civil disobedience.  If you share those values but think my tactics are mistaken, you have the power to redirect them.  You can sentence me to a wide range of community service efforts that would point my commitment to a healthy and just world down a different path.  You can have me work with troubled teens, as I spent most of my career doing.  You can have me help disadvantaged communities or even just pull weeds for the [Bureau of Land Management].  You can steer that commitment if you agree with it, but you can’t kill it.  This is not going away.   At this point of unimaginable threats on the horizon, this is what hope looks like.  In these times of a morally bankrupt government that has sold out its principles, this is what patriotism looks like.  With countless lives on the line, this is what love looks like, and it will only grow.”  – Tim DeChristopher to Judge Dee Benson during DeChristopher’s sentencing on 7.26.11

(Above: A still from the video I filmed of DeChristopher being taken away in shackles to begin his 2 year sentence in federal prison.)

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3 Comments

  1. Posted August 2, 2011 at 7:48 am by jerry | Permalink

    There has been nothing in the news about this story in Chicago. While we may not agree on the right to auction of the land, we should all be upset about the way a citizen was handled and sentenced to 2 years in jail for trying to save the land. This was a complete injustice and the public should know about our Justice Department ‘s pursuit of this citizen even though he raised the money to pay for his bid.

  2. Posted July 15, 2012 at 9:09 am by Mike Cooper | Permalink

    I love that quote. Sounds like a bright guy with strong convictions. How can I see this film, Bidder 70?

  3. Posted August 9, 2012 at 11:16 am by suff | Permalink

    He’s the real deal all right. Currently the film is making the rounds across the country on the festival circuit, and for more details on when it might be coming to a theatre near you, check out http://www.bidder70film.com

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