February 4, 2003
The folks who are organizing the United for Peace anti-war rally have put out a call to action, claiming that their application for a rally permit hasn't been approved. But, in my limited experience with such things, I've noticed that the main reason permits are not approved is due to misfiled paperwork. This is still a rather bureaucratic city, and it's not easy to get everything right. Mind, you this is a different issue than those whose permits are denied, which the United for Peace group has not claimed about their application.
My second concern when I read the call for action was not just the pointlessness of listing a phone number for the Police Comissioner, who has no say over such decisions, but the lack of identifying information about the group and who their sponsors are. It only increases people's trust in a group and expedites their approval for such applications for them to be as transparent as possible.
Still, if they're being legitimately denied the chance to organize a meaningful rally, it would be a shame, given the broad support such a rally would have in a city as liberal as New York. But I'm not so sure I believe that they're being deliberately denied their chance to organize.