Saturday, September 26, 2015

Put on your Redress Dress and Redress!

This is my Redress Dress!  Hopefully you are familiar with First Amendment of the US Constitution:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

I'm sure that many of you find the First Amendment as inspiring as I do and in your spare time realize your inclined to construct a dress covered with angry tweets by people claiming to be blocked by their public officials because you know this would make a great, maybe not-so-obvious, form of a textile-protest-art-project.  No, I'm sure I'm not the only one....

Here are some of the interesting tweets you'll see on the Redress Dress:

I also included complaints from people from other countries because they still share very similar rights of free speech and open government:

However, my favorite part of the dress pays special tribute to Atlanta mayor Kasim Reed.  I found this excellent article, Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed is Blocking Constituents and Journalists on Twitter, that details Reed's bad blocking behavior.  I was excited when I received the author's permission to reprint the article to sew onto the front of my Redress Dress!  I felt this was an important feature of the dress because I've discovered that mayor Reed is probably one of the worst offenders of unlawfully using Twitter's block feature to silence dissent.

This is mayor Reed's response to the issue:

Did I mention Mayor Reed earned his juris doctorate from Howard University School of Law?

So, let's evaluate what is more dumb: caring about being blocked by your elected official or spending so much time, money, and effort to graduate from law school ill-prepared to apply existing Constitutional and open government laws to everyday scenarios only to then become mayor of a major US city who creates a Twitter account in which he uses to make himself look like a fool?

I've been blocked by the @KasimReed account and this is what I see when I try to access it:

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

What is a Redress Dress?

I promise to have pictures of the completed dress soon.  I also plan on having links to all the Twitter comments sewn onto the dress.  It's an amazing work of political textile art.  The dress has dozens of Tweets posted by people all complaining of the same thing, "Hey my public official blocked me on Twitter and I don't understand why?"

These aren't people who decided to Tweet hateful, threatening, or menacing Tweets to their public officials, these are people who pointed out a simple criticism, disagreement, comment, or request.  

Let's  take a look at a few you will see on the dress:

Jazzmine D. McKnight - @Progress4Ohio posted on 5/21/2015:
#Cleveland Police Blocked Me On Both Accounts,So Did
#CityofCleveland And #ClevelandProsecutor I Did Not Curse

Stuart Reynolds - @shaldonangler posted on 5/14/2015:

@teignroy @AngelaGreben Twitter is a broadcast medium - imagine if they were allowed to say "You Roy can't watch TV if I'm on it"!

TXsharon - @TXsharon posted on 3/26/2015:

Dear Twits, Rep. Drew Darby blocked me. I guess he didn't like the pictures from your #fracking backyards. #txlege

AnnetteSchrabClark - @PoetQs  posted on 3/25/2015:
@AngelaGreben In fact I'd rung up a Rep's office 1 time of how to best offer public record for his cosponsored Act. I was advised to Tweet!!

c denise - @C__Denise posted on 9/16/2014:
@SenatorBurr @SenatorHagan @kayhagan The Greenville Chief of Police blocked me on Twitter after I asked him for an investigation.

@C__Denise's Tweet is the one Tweet that absolutely makes my blood boil more than any other.  This is a woman who suffered a terrible tragedy and was blocked on Twitter by her Chief of Police for asking to have her daughter's death investigated.  I have exchanged Tweets with @C__Denise and she let me know that she has since been unblocked, the Chief has retired, and an investigation has been opened.  You can hear more about her story in this radio interview with Lance Scurv at:

You can get a good idea of what kind of Twitter posts appear on my Redress Dress by visiting my Twitter page and viewing my "Favorites" at:

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

How to Make a Redress Dress

Thanks for visiting my blog.  You are reading about an issue that is very personal to you and I hope that my Redress Dress succeeds at making you angry that you can be blocked on Twitter and other forms of social media by your very own elected officials.  

Did you know that when a public official or agency creates a Twitter or Facebook account and use it as a way to discuss "the people's business" they are creating a public record and they can't arbitrarily block comments of scrutiny or criticism that they find offensive.   

For example, Twitter fails to make users distinguish between if their account is for public or private use.  At the end of the day that matters.  What happens is that public officials create accounts that they treat as a private account:
"Pictures/Tweets are public record. They may be used by the media and the public."  Fabulous!  Officer Cook gets it!  Unfortunately, he represents a small minority of public officials who lawfully use their Twitter account.

You can make your own Redress Dress.  I used Vogue pattern v1384, a lightweight denim, and photo fabric.  I printed out dozens of Tweets from people who reported being unlawfully blocked on Twitter.  Their comments are amazing.

I want to thank Sean Breslin who gave me permission to print his article:
I also happen to be blocked by mayor Reed for simply Tweeting him that blocking constituents is wrong.

You can read more at @AngelaGreben

Below are a few pictures of the whole creation process.  More pictures to come.


Tuesday, May 26, 2015

I've Sewn a Redress Dress. You Can Make One, Too!

I completed the construction of the Redress Dress.  I would describe it as a legal brief in textile form. I'm amazed at how it turned out and I love the fact that so many Tweets from various people were used to tell their own story.

Pictures coming soon!