A Secret Service officer covers the mouth of Wenyi Wang, 47, as she is escorted from the camera stand after she disrupted the speech of Chinese President Hu Jintao, not pictured, during an arrival ceremony with President Bush on the South Lawn of the White House, Thursday, April 20, 2006, in Washington.
(Image and caption stolen from the Associated Press).
Wang has since been charged with disorderly conduct and - get this - "intimidating a foreign official". Her "intimidation"? Protesting China's appalling human rights record and its persecution of the Falun Gong movement. And for this, she is facing a fine and up to six months imprisonment. So much for the First Amendment...
But there are two other things which are really galling: first, that the Secret Service saw fit to physically silence her as she was being dragged off, so their important guest's sensitive ears wouldn't be sullied with criticism. And secondly, that Bush apologised to Hu. The only apology he should be giving is "sorry, we have freedom of speech in this country".