Originally published on May 21, 2014, by Gabriel San Roman at OCWeekly.com
Cassandra Fairbanks at the Richard Nixon Presidential Library in Yorba Linda
Former Vice President (President?) Dick Cheney and his wife Lynne thought they were on safe grounds Monday evening in Yorba Linda as they appeared together for a book event. Lynne, the pendeja who once infamously complained there wasn’t enough white men highlighted in U.S. history standards for children, authored James Madison: A Life Reconsidered about the nation’s fourth president. Protesters gathered outside the Nixon library. All went well for the Cheneys inside until Cassandra Fairbanks took her turn at the microphone.
“At the beginning of the night, [Lynne] was talking about how Madison thought dissent was important,” Fairbanks tells the Weekly. “As soon as I heard that, I asked a question.”
The livestream of the author event captured what happened next. “You had mentioned how important it was to Madison, the freedom of conscience. So I’m wondering how you feel about the fact that John Kiriakou–the whistleblower who exposed the torture program–is the only one currently sitting in prison for it?” Fairbanks asked.
Dick shuffled uncomfortably in his chair as if feeling a heart flutter. His wife handled her response. “You’re welcome to say almost anything but what you can’t do is violate national security ordinances that would endanger the country. Edward Snowden is a case in point. I think he’s a traitor and I feel…it does not bode well for our society that he’s being valorized for having betrayed his country.” The audience gave a round of applause.
Pissed off at Lynne’s labeling of the NSA whistleblower a “traitor” Fairbanks fired back a response off-mic about indefinite detention at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba–policies that were a part of the Bush administration her husband served under. “I respect your right to speak your mind but I also reserve the right for myself and Dick not to answer your question,” Lynne said. The dismissal won the adulation of the freedom loving God Bless ‘Merica audience once more.
They didn’t take too kindly to Fairbank’s line of questioning. “People were really upset with me,” she says.They yelled at her, gave dirty looks, shook their heads and claimed she supported the “terrorists.” Fairbanks, who bought a ticket to get inside, didn’t care and would do it all over again in a heartbeat.
“It was more important to attempt to get them to answer for what they done,” she says. The activist is upset that people like whistleblower Chelsea Manning are locked up while Dick and Lynne Cheney get to trot around the country promoting books. “They should be called out everywhere they go.”