President Obama's New Year's Eve signing of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), the military spending bill that flouts our Fifth Amendment rights by allowing the military to detain American citizens indefinitely without due process, has, to a large extent, flown under the radar. But not to a group of around 200 Occupy Wall Street-affiliated protesters, who, fleeing the frigid weather outside, organized a ninety-minute-long flash mob in Grand Central Terminal Tuesday night.
The demonstration was led by green-haired protester Lauren Digioia, a former member of the OWS sanitation committee, who, at the 2:25 mark in the video, was collared by MTA police and charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. Two other protesters were arrested, and four issued summonses, for the rush-hour disturbance. Grand Central probably wasn't the wisest choice of location for the airing of political grievances, and, considering the context of the protest, there may have been something of a self-fulfilling prophecy about the arrests.
But there just as easily could have been no arrests, as no one was hurting anyone, other than the eardrums of passing commuters. MTA rules state that disorderly conduct includes behaving "in any manner which may cause or tend to cause annoyance, alarm or inconvenience to a reasonable person or create a breach of the peace," which allows for a pretty broad interpretation.