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Re: E-M:/ Another perspective ...

Re: "The state agriculture department is deeply committed to identifying, promoting and ensuring farming practices that protect the environment."
I would probably find it somewhat easier to believe that the unquoted phone calls were really so abusive and even threatening that they crossed the line from protected free speech into criminal acts, if I could believe the above statement.  I don't.  I'm sure many individual MDA employees are sincerely committed to doing what they can to protect the environment.  And I don't wnat any of them to be verbally abused or threatened (making it a criminal offense may be another matter . . .).  But (to very loosely and abusively paraphrase our great state motto) if you seek a pleasant peninsula that is being steadily defiled by the power of corporate money to bend public policy to its desires, look around you.  No amount of PR is going to change the incredibly frustrating position citizens find ourselves in today when we try to get unresponsive government to deal effectively with corporate polluters.  Blaming and even prosecuting the sensitive individuals who crack under such frustration is hardly a constructive or reasonable way to address this frustration. 
Tom Stephens
Guild/Sugar Law Center
733 St. Antoine, 3rd Floor
Detroit, Michigan 48226 USA
(313) 962-6540
(Fax) (313) 962-4492