Two Naperville, Illinois, mothers found out what happens to Americans who think they can determine for themselves what is in their best interests.
Malia "Kim" Bendis and Jennifer Stahl were arrested when the city sent around armed police officers to escort power company technicians to install "smart meters" on private homes where owners had previously refused to allow the devices.
Both Stahl and Bendis are leaders of a group called Naperville Smart Meter Awareness which opposes the smart meters for, as the Chicago Tribune put it, "health, security and privacy" concerns. The group is suing the city over the installations which have already occurred in over 57,000 homes.
The city says the wireless meters will make electricity more reliable, more efficient and cheaper. Its installation project is 99 percent complete, according to city officials, except for a few holdouts like Stahl and Bendis.
Smart meters have been installed in homes across the nation under the same pretexts. The truth about smart meters is less innocent than government at all levels has let on. The devices were conceived and designed as part of the broader environmental program that has been adopted under Agenda 21.
There are several health concerns about the wireless meters, including exposure to radiation and electromagnetic fields. Some people are apparently sensitive enough that they can hear a high-pitched buzz or hum from the meters. Health problems that have been documented after installation of the meters have included headaches, insomnia, increased irritability, inability to concentrate, memory problems, dizziness, fatigue, vision problems, nose bleeds, nausea, heart arrhythmia and a whole list of other ailments that some doctors have linked to interference with the human body's nervous system.
As bad as all that is, however, the most urgent reason to oppose smart meters is because they are fascism in a box. The touted efficiency and reliability increases of the meters arise because the meters patch a home into a computerized network that allows faceless technocrats at some faraway power facility to determine if you are using too much electricity and control the utilities and even appliances in your home. With smart meters, the utility company can turn down or cut off the flow of electricity to your house, adjust your thermostat without your knowledge and monitor your usage in real time. If you have modern computerized appliances, they can control your washing machine, dryer, dishwasher, refrigerator, even your coffeemaker.
Stahl said utility workers ignored a posted sign refusing to allow a smart meter, cut a lock on her gate and forced entry into her backyard. When she stood in front of her meter and refused to move, the police stepped in and arrested her. Bendis declined to speak to reporters on advice of her attorney.
"It was forced on my house today," Stahl said. "It was really a violation. I violated something, but I’ve been violated too, so I guess we’re now in a society of violating one another."
She said her group represents other homeowners who were not allowed to refuse the smart meter installation.
The city offers a wired version of the meters but forces recipients to pay a $70 fee for installation and an additional $25 per month.
City Manager Doug Krieger defended the arrests, saying that police were simply protecting utility workers at homes where owners had resisted previous attempts at installation. He said, "The city has always had and maintains the right to access our equipment, and today we were simply exercising that right."
Protecting Americans' rights, on the other hand, apparently isn't in the plan.