Armed Americans Openly Defy Police State In Order to Feed Homeless



Matt Agorist | The Free Thought Project

Dallas, TX — When feeding the homeless becomes an act of civil disobedience, Americans have been asleep for far too long.

Luckily, however, there are still good people who are willing to defy such arbitrary and ill-conceived laws and ordinances.

The folks over at the aptly named organization Don’t Comply, took to the streets just outside the Austin Street Shelter in Dallas this weekend to perform, what has now become a revolutionary act – feeding the homeless.

“We are not complying with a bad law today, “Matthew Short, PR director of Don’t Comply said. “Evidently the city of Dallas believes that it’s wrong, or bad, or unlawful for us to feed more than a certain number of people at a time. But, during Christmas, we want to show love to our community and give these people a chance to survive the winter, whether it be with blankets or coats, or just giving them a holiday party like today with all kinds of cookies, and goodies, turkey and dressing, and the whole nine yards.”

Last December, the Dallas city council enacted Ordinance No. 29595, which makes it illegal to serve food to the homeless without jumping through a statist myriad of bureaucratic hoops, including a fee, training classes, and written notices.

One should not need to file multiple forms and pay a fee to obtain a permit to give food to those in need who are willingly ready to accept it. The folks at Don’t Comply know this.

According to Brett Sanders, hundreds of homeless people showed up to not only enjoy a fantastic array of food, snacks and beverages – but there was also an assortment of winter clothing that was donated as well.

“All of the homeless people that I talked to during the event were extremely grateful for the support and there was a sense of humanity that is indescribable. Interacting with other human beings whom most consider to be living life at rock bottom will likely alter your perspective on the world around you,” explained Sanders.

The event went off without a hitch, even after code enforcers showed up. Lead organizer of the event, Murdoch Pizgatti was confronted by the enforcers who told him to file the proper paperwork upon the event’s conclusion to which, Pizgatti politely replied, “no.”

“We’ve already had to speak to the police, they’ve already come and delivered code to us,” said Short, explaining what happened when the code enforcers showed up. “But, after shaking hands with them, they realized we’re all armed – and we’re gonna do what we’re gonna do because it’s not an immoral thing that we are doing.”

Below is the powerful video shot by Brett Sanders showing the powerful effects of such moral civil disobedience.

Watch the video below:

HT Brett Sanders.

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Filming Cops
Filming Cops 3661 posts

Filming Cops was started in 2010 as a conglomerative blogging service documenting police abuse. The aim isn’t to demonize the natural concept of security provision as such, but to highlight specific cases of State-monopolized police brutality that are otherwise ignored by traditional media outlets.

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  • Raymond Covit

    i can invite who i want to a picnic !!!!!! who owns America? we have a US constitution.

  • PizzaPal

    The link in the article that contains scans of the legal code for
    ordinance 29595 is really great. I think everyone who wanted to serve
    food to the homeless – or at least the person(s) who organized the event
    should have read that ordinance themselves. Because just reading it
    myself, it looks pretty simple:

    Give written notice to the city
    saying you intend to distribute food at least 24 hours before you do so,
    have at least 1 person present who has taken a food safety course, have
    hand sanitizer or some way for people to clean themselves, have enough
    trash bags for your trash, make sure you can keep hot food hot and cold
    food cold.

    Like… this has nothing to do with the law fighting people. The legal requirements here were pretty low. All they had to do was not act like they are entitled to go against the law just because they want to, do the barest of legal footwork, and they would be allowed to serve the food completely legally and unhindered. Just write on a piece of paper saying that you want to give food to people for free, promise not to feed them uncooked or otherwise bad food, throw your trash away. That’s it! The video also shows no attempts by police to stop them and Brett even says explicitly that the police left them alone after giving some city code to them.

    • gellero

      LOL…the author did not do his homework……….just like ‘stupid’ cops………muahahahaha

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    • a

      So have you never heard of the frog in boiling water or is it just that century after century of humanity proving its tendencies is not enough evidence for you to realize that small encroachments on freedom are cumulatively dangerous. You make it sound like the law is just some very easy rule to follow that was instilled to keep homeless people from eating bad food. How jaded can you be? Statute-makers don’t give a fuck about the well being of the homeless – we’re putting up spikes everywhere for christ sake. These small statutes, which you think are reasonable are nothing more than revenue generating policies which help condition society to dehumanize those in poverty and keep people from helping. You don’t seem to understand the fact that corporate municipalities use pretense to earn money.

      • PizzaPal

        This ordinance doesn’t charge anything. It’s literally 100% free. All you have to do is drop off a piece of paper at the courthouse saying “In 24 hours, we plan to serve food to the homeless. We agree to not serve improperly handled food and one of us has a food handling license.” It IS some very easy rule to follow that was instilled to keep homeless people from eating bad food. Have you read the law? Or are you just complaining because laws exist?

        “We” aren’t “putting up spikes everywhere”. I looked for examples of defensive architecture through an internet search and only found photos/articles referencing one place in Manchester, a few more in London, two in Manhattan, one in Madrid, and a few in NYC. Half of those aren’t spikes and aren’t explicitly anti-loitering devices. Some of those look like they are there to disperse rain or keep people from blocking fire hydrants. But maybe their purpose IS to discourage loitering. I don’t know. I do know that it is very uncommon, so uncommon that there’s only about 40 pictures out there of any devices like this (that I could find, anyway). I’ve never seen any of these measures personally in OK, AR, TX, CA, or GA, in any of the cities therein which I’ve visited on business or vacation.

        Corporate municipalities do sometimes use pretense to earn money. This isn’t the case with regard to this article. There is no money being generated for anyone. There are no fines being imposed. This article shows people ignoring the law and serving food without agreeing to do so in a safe way, the police checking in on them once, and letting them do it anyway. Probably, this is because the police genuinely wanted to help feed the homeless and didn’t want to prevent others from doing so.

        Friend, the issue here is with your mentality. You seek out hatred and selfishness and division. Try looking the love and unity in things. People gave food to those in need, and the police did nothing to stop them. That is great! This article is written with a poor mindset, a biased one that also seeks a division between “The Man” and the people who live under him, and I feel it has unduly influenced you. This is by no means a perfect system, and there is much that can be done to improve it. But the law (in this case) is fair, and just, and kind.

        • baruchzed

          I think you are missing the point. People made a law that, if observed, makes it more difficult for hungry people to receive food. That’s just asinine. We do not need to regulate every action. Talk about your nanny state.

          • PizzaPal

            Actions that can spread sickness like serving uncooked food near undisposed of waste products should be regulated. If you believe that you should shit where you eat and don’t need to listen to “big brother” because you feel he is oppressing you by requiring you to wipe up and flush, you are not thinking. You are not using the brain in your skull which is allowing you to log on to the internet and post messages.

      • PizzaPal

        One other point: The old adage regarding a frog being unable to detect small changes in temperature is a myth. Not only will a frog will jump out of water well before it boils, frogs aren’t known for sitting still. So the frog would likely jump out on its own before the temperature became an issue, just because it wanted to be somewhere else. – 1888 collection of studies, one containing a study regarding the frog adage – discussion regarding the frog adage, with some references – more references

    • Frank Kush

      So you need big brother state to tell you what to do and give you the privilege of paying them for it? What are you like 5 mentally? Maybe we should allow the government to require permits to pick our noses and wipe our asses to then…

      • PizzaPal

        If you’re going to pick your nose and wipe your ass, then use those same unwashed hands to serve burgers to the homeless, then yes – we should allow the government to regulate food service.

        Again, no permit was needed and no cost was incurred by the people who helped feed the homeless. So I don’t understand why you’re complaining about “paying them for it”. All they had to do was inform the city that they were going to feed people and that they didn’t intend to poison them.

        And it’s better to be 5 years old mentally than to be unwilling to use logic or reason.

        • Frank Kush

          At least you’re honest about being a slave to the government. You’re going to make a great communist one day you dolt.

          • PizzaPal

            I’m going to make a great communist one day because I don’t want someone to shit on my burger?

          • Ferd

            Let’s say all the hoops were jumped through, how does that guarantee nobody took a dump in your burger?

          • PizzrPrl

            It doesn’t. Nothing physically prevents people from doing what they want except being bound with some sort of physical restraint. Some people will just say “I don’t want to follow this law, so I’m not going to.” People will drive drunk, kill other people, fly planes into buildings, or shit on burgers. That doesn’t mean that there is no need for law or regulation.

          • Ferd

            There is no need for the permit. There are already laws that would cover someone crapping in your chow. The permit is only to feed Uncle Sam and nothing more.

          • PizzrPrl

            There isn’t a permit for this. You don’t get a permit. You might not even talk to anyone about it. You just tell them that you want to do it and you’re allowed to do it just by telling them. You don’t even need to get permission from them. Just say “I’m doing this” and you’re allowed to do this. But maybe that counts as a[n imaginary] permit.

            But there’s nothing wrong with this ordinance, nor with how it was policed in this scenario. The police showed up, said hi, and left. Nobody got arrested or fined. The ordinance doesn’t have any specific fines associated with it, any fines come from other laws with fines attached. This ordinance does nothing to feed Uncle Sam. You are making things up.

          • Ferd

            Last December, the Dallas city council enacted Ordinance No. 29595, which makes it illegal to serve food to the homeless without jumping through a statist myriad of bureaucratic hoops, including a fee, training classes, and written notices.

            Emphasis mine. Note fee = feed the uncle.

          • PizzrPrl

            The writer of this article wrote that, but it is not a part of the ordinance. There’s no source given for that or any reason to assume that is correct based on the evidence given. The author is either venturing a guess disguised as a statement or is outright lying. Just because someone typed something and you like what they typed doesn’t mean it’s true.

          • hang3xc

            I’ve seen a lot of childrens lemonade stands aggressively shut down, so YES, quite often the police and the law are wrong and they ARE oppressors

          • PizzrPrl

            How many is “a lot”? Two? One? I have seen maybe only two articles myself regarding these sorts of things in my life. I don’t think you’ve seen much more than that. I think you’re just typing what you believe regardless of whether it’s true or not. And: it’s not wrong to shut down a lemonade stand if it is illegally placed or a permit is required to erect or operate one. Law enforcement enforcing the law is not inherently oppressive.

            You seem to me like the kind of person who confuses the word “oppressive” with “offensive”. You also seem to me like the kind of person who feels oppressed by a lot of things.
            For example: anyone whose opinion differs from yours, or anyone who doesn’t immediately agree with you.

          • hang3xc

            By a lot, I mean a couple dozen, which seems like a lot to me, but I likely pay more attention to things like that than you do because it is something that irks me. By “things like that”, I mean police being pricks/thugs, etc.

            “it’s not wrong to shut down a lemonade stand if it is illegally placed or a permit is required to erect or operate one”

            A childs makeshift lemonade stand, in front of their home, should not require a permit. It is something lots of kids do at some point that usually lasts an hour or two before they get bored and find something else to do. I always stop when I see one if I’m not in a big hurry, throw them a buck, and chat with the kids for a minute. Sometimes the lemonade is good, and cold. Often it is not. I couldn’t care less. It’s not really about the lemonade. I like to see kids having fun. If the lemonade is awful, I pretend to drink some, put it in the cup holder, and dispose of it at my convenience

          • PizzrPrl

            I don’t see why police would take down those lemonade stands then, if they’re doing nothing wrong. Do you have any sources showing that lemonade stands are being unfairly or unreasonably policed? Some news articles?

          • hang3xc

            I go through so many articles on so many police topics that even if I saved every one I likely wouldn’t be able to lay my hands on anything in a proficient manner. On this topic, about 1/2 the time the cops honestly don’t seem like they want to shut them down… but they do anyway

            One notable time was Jerry Seinfelds kids, though that was a bit more than a little kid trying to earn 5 or 10 dollars

            Here is a link that has some stories and additional links in the first paragraph
            I’m sure with minimal effort you can find many more

            Gotta get them permits, follow them regulations, can’t have kids trying to have fun, learn a lesson about how working hard can earn you money, or how hard it is to actually make money, etc etc.
            Also can’t have untrained people bring food out to the homeless, because not eating at all would be better than them eating something prepared by someone who didn’t get all the necessary training on how to make a pot of soup without making everyone ill, even though they manage to cook for their own families regularly without constant trips to the emergency room.

          • PizzrPrl

            Looking through some of the stories on this site, it looks like these lemonade stands are being shut down for other things than being illegal lemonade stands. I’ll discuss the articles on the front page, from top to bottom:

            *Jerry Seinfeld’s kids’ lemonade stand was not directly shut down, but was shut down by proxy because a snooty neighbor called the cops on them for having parked their cars illegally on community property. This was enforced in a reasonable way.

            *The second involving a lemonade stand permit being needed in Texas. The interviewer led the girls on a little bit, encouraging them to “fight the government” a couple too many times (it wasn’t extreme, but a little unsettling). The segment with the mom being interviewed had the mom confirm that the police were reasonable and just informed them that they needed a peddler’s permit to sell things (as for a garage sale) and a kitchen inspection (to get approval to sell food items). Under state law, an inspection must be conducted and a permit must be
            issued in order to sell anything that must be temperature-regulated to
            prevent bacterial growth, including lemonade. This is a health violation if they’re allowed to sell it without a permit, and the city could get sued if someone got sick from it. This was unfortunate, since lemonade isn’t likely to make anyone sick, but the city wants to cover their asses from lawsuits, so it looks like that’s a way they’re trying to do that.

            *The third article is about boys being told to not advertise snow shoveling services from door to door. If you look at an actual news article for this event ( you would see that NJ had issued a State of Emergency, and everyone was being told to stay indoors if at all possible. Contrast that with the heavily biased Lemonade Freedom site, whose headline for that event reads “Cops Threaten Kids For Shoveling Snow Without A Permit”. Their concern was the safety of the kids, and secondly that they needed a permit to be selling a service the way they did. Yet, Lemonade Freedom turned that story into anti-police propaganda due to the bias of the author(s).

            Briefly reading other articles on that site shows a ridiculous bias against the police and more fabrication in events they describe. That is not a reliable news source. It’s a site designed specifically to cater to people who are afraid or angry at the government or law enforcement, and to fuel that hatred and fear.

          • smrnda

            On lemonade stands :

            I can view a role for government regulating businesses which are primary sources of income. But kids lemonade stands and some people feeding the homeless should be the type of ‘okay, it’s a small amount go about your business.’ Maybe post a disclaimer that ‘this has not been inspected.’ My local farmer’s market allows the sale of baked goods made in uninspected kitchens as long as a notice is posted. Why? Because people in my town wanted a farmer’s market with home made goods more than they wanted people to have to get permits and submit to inspections, which, given the budget, would have shut the thing down. . It’s a trade off where you grant small sellers (or donors) a break.

            I think a permit for a permanent restaurant is okay. Or a street vendor who operates regularly. But a lemonade stand? That’s like demanding that I get a permit if I tutor the neighbor’s kid for 20 dollars for a few sessions.

          • PizzrPrl

            Your reasonableness is refreshing, and in stark contrast to the comments I normally see on disqus comment sections. Seriously, your comment contains the sum total of reasonable speech that every other comment on this thread lacked. It’s a big deal to me when I see there’s still someone who can think and express an opinion without an explicit prejudice or outright hatred.

            I agree that lemonade stands should not be policed as they are. As it is, there are laws that can be enforced against lemonade stands, and sometimes those are. I do think enforcing those laws in some of these cases are unnecessary, but I prefer not to assume malice when stupidity is more likely (either personal on the part of the cops, or administrative by way of ‘no tolerance’ policies or the like). Not that you commented either way on the law enforcement, just on the law.

          • hang3xc

            So regulations automatically make food safe?

            Chipotle comes to mind.

            I’m also sure there are plenty of regulated places that have ass and nose picking, nut scratching cooks preparing food, or coughing all over everything when they have the flu. You put a lot of faith in regulations.

            I’m thinking people bringing food they made in their unregulated kitchens at home is probably of much better quality than many regulated places.

          • PizzrPrl

            I don’t think food regulation makes all food magically safe to eat. Your implication that I’m saying that (especially given that I both never said that AND that I explicitly said otherwise) is asinine. But it is the law to follow FDA guidelines for food preparation, and it is reasonable to do so because doing so reduces the chances of someone becoming sick from food.

            Just because some people choose to ignore food regulation laws does not mean that food regulation laws are worthless or unnecessary.

            That is a different issue, and usually comes from the “made with love” aspect of home-cooked meals: there’s no limit on the amount of butter you can use, you can use any kind of fat you want, use more salt, use more sugar. All those components which are tastiest (but bad for you in large amounts) are easier to give to friends and family in excess when you make it in your own kitchen outside of FDA regulation. This does not mean that Chipotle and McDonald’s don’t produce food that isn’t bad for you but very tasty. It just means that in your own kitchen you can be the avatar of Paula Deen, and at Chipotle there’s a limit to how deliciously unhealthy your food can be. So the flavor is better sometimes, yes. But not necessarily healthier than FDA regulated food.

        • smrnda

          Typically, you need permits and licenses when you’re a business making money. It’s the cost of doing business. If you want to make the money, you have to abide by rules which means getting permits and facing inspections. I mean, if I don’t wash my hands when I’m running a restaurant, they can shut me down. but I’m free to be a slob when I’m cooking at home. My friends can choose to be wary of my cooking, but our holiday dinner is out of the scope of government regulation.

          With people feeding the homeless, it’s like me giving my neighbor a sandwich. Do I need a permit for that? It’s not a commercial activity. I’m not a restaurant. Will I need a health inspector before a holiday dinner since I’m feeding a crowd? At what point are people free to give and exchange things for free without a need for government intervention? I’m not anarchist, I’m not even a libertarian. I have no problem with reasonable regulations for businesses. But when you’re giving away food for free, I feel like these laws are more about ‘keep the homeless out of sight’ than ‘protect their health.’ If the government gave a shit about the health of homeless people we’d have someone from the government out there feeding them. If the government gave a shit about homeless people they’d have real shelters they could go. Being homeless and being poor is already criminalized. So they next move is criminalizing people helping the homeless.

          I think government regulations are useful and necessary in protecting consumers, but I also think there’s a time to say ‘hey, at this point regulations cease to serve the public interest.’

          If a street vendor selling food was shut down for not abiding by some health inspection code, I’d feel differently. However small, a street vendor is still a business. When you want to be a business, you accept abiding by rules as a cost of doing business and a condition of making money. In some ways, I feel consumers in the USA don’t get adequate protection. But these ‘don’t feed the homeless’ laws are about criminalizing homelessness , poverty and helping. I’m not down with that.

    • helper

      You missed the entire point of what and why they are doing this.

      • PizzaPal

        This particular law was enacted as a measure to keep the public safe from harmful microorganisms in undisposed waste and uncooked food, by making sure that food being served is regulated enough to at least discourage people from serving dangerous food. It’s standard practice for every business and non-profit that serves food on a large scale to adhere to federal and state laws regarding food service.

        This article doesn’t show any inappropriate behavior except on the part of the people who served food. They didn’t obey the law because they didn’t feel like it. That’s all.

  • R Damon Combs

    The Best of Texas. This is how real christians take care of the least.

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  • KaoseThema

    arm yourselves. the time is coming to embrace insurrection. they’ve pushed as far as they could. it’s time to push back. before we can’t push at all.

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