Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Roll Call Covers PSA, Noise Issue

The Capitol Hill newspaper Roll Call in its Jan. 18 issue mentioned, in a story about the citizen coordinator transition in Police Service Area 102, the continuing amplified noise issue at H and 8th Streets NE. My neighbor, Marc, and I are volunteering for that duty.

The article mentioned the noise because Marc and I told the reporter it was an issue to which we already were devoting much time—it’s the big reason we know so many Metropolitan Police officers.

An excerpt from the Jan. 18 Roll Call story, authored by reporter Elizabeth Brotherton:

Their effort [in reducing amplified noise] centers on a group of people who, armed with microphones and amplifiers, regularly spend their Saturday afternoons on the corner of H and Eighth streets Northeast, preaching their views of the world to passersby.

It gets really loud. In fact, Klavitter said he and his neighbors are able to hear the speeches in their homes, even with the windows closed.

Repeated attempts to convince the group to turn off the amplifier, or at least lower the volume, have failed. And police can’t force the group to quiet down because Washington, D.C., law allows for amplified non-commercial speech from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.

So Klavitter rallied his neighbors. He started a Web log,, in an effort to raise awareness and put pressure on the City Council to change the law. And he has been in contact with various District agencies to reach a solution.

It is not the First Amendment that Klavitter and his allies want to quell. It’s just the noise.

”I do believe in the freedom of speech. However, I do not believe we must endure on (or inside) our own property someone’s loud ranting for three or four hours every Saturday afternoon,” Klavitter posted on his first blog entry.
Today’s “Roll Call” story is in addition to the Jan. 12 ”Voice of the Hill article and editorial in support of a fix to the D.C. law.

I believe one needs a subscription to access the entire article online.

The photo of the new—and possibly much-too-serious—citizen coordinators of Police Service Area 102. It appeared in the Jan. 18 edition of Roll Call newspaper. Yours truly (left) and Marc Lesnick are standing on H Street NE. (USED WITH PERMISSION. Copyright © 2006. Kara Bunte)


Blogger Lonnie Bruner said...

Holy lord. You guys look like total hard-asses. Good luck!

1:27 AM  

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