Occupy Nashville was removed from their square at app. 3:30 am Friday.

29 human beings were arrested. The arrests appear to have incited people who didn’t necessarily support the movement, but who are appalled by the governments response.

Shortly after the arrests, Night Court Magistrate Tom Nelson rebuked the Tennessee Highway Patrol, which is responsible for policing Legislative Plaza, and refused to approve troopers’ warrants. “It is of particular consternation that the rules and curfew were enacted after a protest movement and occupation of Legislative Plaza had been tolerated for just over three weeks, with no notice that the group members were involved in criminal activity,” Nelson wrote…

Citing safety and sanitation concerns, General Services Commissioner Steven Cates initially ordered the group to evacuate the plaza by 8 p.m. Thursday. Then, on Thursday, the state announced new regulations that included a new curfew for the plaza and a daily $65 permit requirement for gatherings there. State officials backed off the 8 p.m. deadline and said they wouldn’t begin enforcing the new regulations until Friday, while at the same time they posted signs around the plaza stating that it would be closed from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. Friday. At 3:10 a.m., 75 state troopers arrived and arrested all those who refused to leave.

Technically, the requirement to have a permit, which costs $65, has always been on the books — state officials just haven’t enforced it. While the curfew is new, Thursday’s decision effectively serves as an announcement that, now, the state is going to take the policy seriously. “Before, if anyone held an event without a permit, we didn’t do anything,” state spokesperson Lola Potter said. “We just held our breath and hoped they didn’t leave too much trash.” Potter cited the state’s respect for the fact that the plaza is a public place as a reason for the lax enforcement of the policy, but said that starting Friday, officials will be “a little more stern about requiring a permit.”

In other words, if you support Republican values you are allowed to protest; if you’re a Democrat, you are banned by a curfew.

Republican Gov. Bill Haslam said he approved the arrests and expected the curfew to be enforced again Friday night.

One of them was Adam Knight, an eighth-grade English teacher at Two Rivers Middle School. Asked whether he was worried that his activism could jeopardize his job with Metro schools, Knight quoted Martin Luther King: “You can’t be afraid to stand up for what you believe because you’re afraid that you will lose your job, or you are afraid that you will be criticized.”

One of Knight’s 13-year-old students watched as he was thrown to the ground, cuffed with zip ties and dragged from the plaza. The student had persuaded his parents to take him to the plaza to watch the demonstration. “I appreciate what the people are doing here today,” said eighth-grader Charles Bruce. “They’re supporting our future.” His horrified parents remained with Charles on the sidewalks outside Legislative Plaza after the protesters were arrested and rows of state troopers took up position to block anyone from setting foot onto the once-public space.

“They’re telling me we don’t have the right to gather?” his stepfather, John Henry, said. “There will be litigation,” Nashville attorney Patrick Frogge, who is representing some of the protesters, said Friday. “They (state troopers) crossed the line further and became illegal captors when the judge ordered them (the protesters) released and they held them for hours anyway.”

Apparently common sense is not being used in the Tennessee Republican governor’s office. This appears to be an attempt to intimidate, nothing else.

“You’ve got to look at the rich heritage, legacy and history of Davidson County when it comes to legal, civil protests,” Metro Councilman Maynard said. “I hope Tennesseans don’t lose sight of that. Can you imagine if the lunch counter sit-ins or the civil rights protests or the Freedom Riders had to get a permit? That’s ridiculous.”