back to article Anonymous smites Orlando after charity arrests

Hacktivist group Anonymous has taken to the streets in the Disney World resort town of Orlando, central Florida as part of a protest against the arrests of people supplying food to the homeless. The group also launched a denial of service attack against a local tourism website,, as a reprisal for …


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  1. Titus Technophobe

    The denials begin

    "Food Not Bombs said it has no affiliation to Anonymous."

    Not wishing to be associated with a bunch of script kiddies, I guess.

  2. Andy Enderby 1

    holy crap.......

    ..... I actually agree with Anonymous on an issue, if not with their DDoS. Better..... much better use of political anger.

  3. Naughtyhorse

    Let's get this straight

    Orlando authorities arresting people for distibuting food to the homeless?

    I can easily understand people doing incredibly stupid things in the belief that they are doing the right thing - like all them dickeads that broke the world economy because they thought they had found a way to eliminate risk. They were wrong, and now we all must pay (some by losing their homes I daresay)

    but arresting people for helping the homeless??

    How the fuck do these degenerates sleep at night?

    godwin dont even come close.

    go anon!

    how about hacking the local gov website to play an mp3 of 'vigilante man' to every visitor? with no off switch.

    1. Marvin the Martian

      Has been going on for years.

      Homeless are bad for local house price values, you know, so residents want them to move on.

      It's not a bureaucratic oversight that the group has no permit; the laws suddenly changed while they were doing their charitable work [lawchange supported by voters] and they refuse to stop.

    2. Craigness


      Yes, let's get this straight. As you can see in their youtube videos, these people are not being arrested for giving food to the homeless. They are arrested for misuse of a public park or something, whereas if they'd been handing out food on their own premises I dare say they'd not be given any hassle. But not getting hassle is not their goal here. Hassle is indeed what they want, and they'll put children on the front line in order to get as much of it as they can.

      On youtube, see "20 Orlando Police Steal food from Children, Arrest 6 MORE for feeding the Hungry" and pay attention to the commentary at 0:38. I'll show you something which will make you change your mind.

    3. david wilson


      >>"but arresting people for helping the homeless??"

      Well, technically they're arresting them for doing things without a permit.

      If the group *haven't applied for a permit*, there must be reasons. It'd be interesting to know what they were before coming to some kind of judgement.

      Do they think that they'd legally be in a worse position if they applied and didn't get one?

      Do they actually want the publicity that comes with arrests?

      Do they think it's a point of principle that they shouldn't have to get a permit, or is not applying for one some act of civil disobedience?

      As it is, it does seem like the group is choosing not to apply for a permit, knowing the position that puts them in, even after it's clear what the official reaction is to acting without a permit.

      Irrespective of the merits of their operation, it does seem like they're knowingly doing things which will lead to a particular reaction. I wouldn't hugely sympathise with people in that situation whether or not I supported what they're trying to do, since they currently seem to be bringing things on themselves.

      If they applied for a permit and were refused one for any sensible area to operate in (like being pushed far away from where their target clients hang out), that'd be a different matter.

      Maybe the permit system is just there so people in the posh areas can get things they don't want to see sidelined somewhere else.

      Maybe it's riven with politics so that an unfavoured group would be unlikely to get permission to operate anywhere.

      Maybe it's just there to try and avoid a complete free-for-all

      The best way to get some insight into that would be to see what happened to various applications.

      Also, however laudable a particular action might be, once there are rules saying that permits are required, it'd be tricky for the authorities to ignore them even for something they thought was a good cause, since that can lead to all kinds of people thinking that *they* shouldn't need permission either, and whining or crying discrimination if rules are applied to them that had been ignored when it came to other people.

      And if I was in the group concerned, I wouldn't want the Anonymous lot causing trouble ostensibly in defence of me, if it was going to annoy one or other group of people I might have to deal with in the long term.

      Anonymous will just bugger off and cause trouble elsewhere when they get bored.

      Real people can get left having to deal with the aftermath.

      1. nyelvmark


        >>Maybe the permit system is just there so people in the posh areas can get things they don't want to see sidelined somewhere else.

        According to the Orlando Sentinel, the ban only applies to parks within 2 miles of city hall:

        Out of sight, out of mind. That, I would guess, is what the protest is about.

      2. Naughtyhorse

        Maybe it's just there to try and avoid a complete free-for-all


        the homeless???

        is that, cow??


        no its BULLSHIT!

        come on!

        An earler comment got it right (it's about house prices... and tourism), the homless are disenfranchised and getting shafted by the system. The idea that you would even _need_ a permit to assist the destitute is utterly perverse, and should cause any right thinking individual to seriously question the values of their society.

        1. Elmer Phud

          Coming soon . . .

          There wil be similar thngs happening in London in the run up to Boris's Olympics.

          Think of the money the punters have coughed up to get tickets, and wil be spending withthier official Visa cards on the official sponsors crappy burgers.

          Boris has already said he wants the riff-raff cleared away - that's just about the entire East End apart from the places where the property prices went up.

    4. M Gale

      Applying for permits.

      This reminds me of the SOCPA debacle that stops people from protesting about anything, in any way whatsoever, even wearing a mildly provocative T Shirt or displaying a cake with the word "Peace" iced on it, anywhere in central London without a permit.

      So a certain activist comedian got in on the act. Got several hundred people to all think of their own causes and all individually apply for permits, all on the same day, at the same police station. That made for some fun footage.

      There are ways of appearing to cooperate, while making complete and total idiots out of the people in charge, I'm sure.

    5. Wild Bill

      Same shit happening over here

      Simple answer to homelessness. Ban it.

      1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

        Re: Same shit happening over here

        I believe they've backtracked on that now. Good. It was wrong.

  4. Bumpy Cat

    Arresting people for feeding the homeless?

    You know, I bet the people who are cracking down on Food Not Bombs call themselves Christian ...

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. Justin Clements

      Don't be daft.

      A Christian is more likely to be the one getting arrested than figuring out a way of preventing such things. Go read the Bible ffs.

      1. Dante


        I think the point being made it that christians nowadays do a fair bit of nastyness - you know, like bomb countries for oil.

      2. Bumpy Cat

        @Don't be daft

        That's exactly my point - a true Christian, ie someone who follows the teachings of Christ, would be right at the front of such an effort to help the homeless and hungry. The people who want to stop this will be wearing their sharp suit and driving their expensive car as they go to church on Sunday, but their souls are empty. They claim to be Christians while going against the principles of Christianity.

        (I'm not Christian, but I've got a little bit of soul)

  5. Locky


    So you need a permit to distibute food in Orlando? Doesn't sound too much of a bad idea, why don't they just apply for one?

    1. Muscleguy Silver badge


      Maybe because past experience or when they actually apply they get: application denied. With no explanation forthcoming? I bet the council would like to operate like the system that created tramps here in the UK: no homeless person can stay in a parish for more than one night (otherwise the parish became responsible for their welfare). Presumably the council think homeless people are like pigeons and feeding only encourages them. Hmmm, must become homeless just for some free meals at the soup kitchen, what do you reckon?

    2. Daniel 1

      Well, exactly

      While the notion of worthies rumbling up in a minibus and distributing bread and beans to the needy sounds as philanthropic as it no doubt is, government agencies tend to demand that homeless people, like anyone else, deserve things like health inspections, hygiene checks, and proof of origin, on any food handouts.

      Since Food Not Bombs actually have a policy of using surplus food, from food outlets, destined for waste, there is really no way their operations can be reconciled with the boring old apparatus of government.

      1. elderlybloke

        Well, exactly

        Dear Daniel 1,

        I too had a thought about the Health issue with hand out of food .

        If it happened to be infected with say e-colii ,the authorities would be getting the stick, for not protecting the health of the citizens .

    3. Naughtyhorse


      and have to face a big, inbred. sweaty redneck asking 'are you some kind of communist, boy?'

      fuck that.

      you would have thought in a country run by religous fundamentalists that following the rules in the book of their invisible friend would not cause problems.

      I guess christian charity belongs in church with the hypocrytes and has no place in merkin society

      altogether now...

      jesus was a capricorn,

      he ate organic food,

      he believied in love and peace,

      and never wore no shoes,

      long hair beard and sandals,

      and a funky bunch of friends,

      reckon they'd just nail him up if he came down again....

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        Since when have we got our values twisted?

        The chances are that the law was enacted by liberals, not right wing Christians, and the whole charity ethos is something that Christians identify heavily with and are generally something that Christian groups get involved with.

        1. Naughtyhorse

          that would be on the days

          they arent holding the plackard saying 'when a fag dies god laughs' then.

          Thats the wonderful dichotomy that exists in the land of the free (free from critical reasoning that is) the 'chrsitians' are all to the right (of.....damn you godwin!) and the liberals (godless commies) are all trying to make the world a better place.

          the irony must be apparent even to a nation famed for being irony impared

      2. Daniel 1

        You do realise, Naughtyhorse...

        That one of the organisations fighting this ruling, by Orlando is the 'First Vagabond Church of God'? A neo-Christian church set up by the homeless of Orlando? As many of them have been arrested in this case, and in many ways they have been more active, being actually homeless, themselves.

        Don't go all anti-Christian, here, because one of the reasons Humanism has a love-hate-relationship with Christianity, is that - while Christianity says "Nail me to a tree, I'm still right" - Humanism's message is, essentially "No thanks, I'd rather die behind the chemical sheds".

        Both agree on how far they are willing to go, they only differ on why - and even then, the difference is a question of how the reason is embodied.

        1. hplasm Silver badge

          I rather think that the Humanist would say-

          "Don't nail me to a fucking tree! What is wrong with you people?"

    4. RollinPowell

      "permits" are a legal trick

      They make sure the permits are not issued for Lake Eola park which is where most of the homeless are. Downtown Orlando is very small and there aren't really any other parks in the area. They could apply for permits every day from now til the world ends and they'll never get one.

      That's a favorite dirty political trick - to do <whatever> you need a permit, but then they don't give out any permits. It's a great way to make something illegal without actually passing a law that would otherwise be poorly received by the voting public.

      It's very similar to the tax stamps of the 1920's. Make a tax stamp required but never give out any stamps and effectively outlaw something that would otherwise not be possible to do because the public would never support it otherwise.

  6. Anonymous Coward


    It may have changed in the last 15 to 20 years, but back when I knew people who were associated with Food Not Bombs, they were what I would call "mild anarchists". They might have an issue with the idea of getting a permit because of "the man".

    Back then, FNB was sourcing a lot of their food by dumpster diving. It is probably difficult to get a permit for food that is sourced this way.

  7. TheRead


    Seriously, refusing to feed people because you are worried that they might stick around? It's better to risk the lives and health of the homeless than risk the neighborhood not looking so pretty? Let's sweep the undesirables under the rug by passing them off to the next county or state and pretending they don't exist. I wonder if this has ever happened before in history...

    And are you really going to complain that it's a group of fundamentalists providing food to the homeless? I wouldn't care if it was Charles Manson released on bail passing out the food, as long as the only result is the most dejected people in society are able to get some food and they aren't withholding it unless they join their religion. I also don't care if every member of the Orlando bureaucrats are all hypocritical Christians, because in the end they're still being immoral assholes.

  8. Valerion

    Not Disneyland


    Disneyland is in California, Walt Disney World is in Florida


  9. RollinPowell

    took long enough

    I'm from Orlando and they've been arresting the food not bombs people feeding homeless people for a couple years now. It's funny because Lake Eola park (and the "lake" itself) is a festering cesspool that a couple high end condo developers are (futility) trying to make nice.

    Regardless of your opinion of Anonymous, I think this a good cause to support especially because the food not bombs people have been being arrested for years for feeding homeless people. Orlando has a lot of homeless people and virtually NO social services to help them and the only reason they outlawed feeding the homeless people are the rich condo developers leaning on the corrupt local politicians.

    I am so glad I left Orlando - don't let Disney mislead you, it's a bad place.

  10. Rajiv Dhir

    There is more info available on the net

    a) You need a permit for feeding in a public park - passed several years ago in Orlando (2006)

    b) You may only do so TWICE a year.

    c) Orlando council paid for two permits for Food Not Bombs.

    d) Food Not Bombs then continued to Feed the Homeless or in fact anyone who turned up.

    They only started enforcing because the appeal against the ordnance was finally dismissed. In fact the appeal succeeded, as the court of first instance found it violated free speech. The appeal court said giving out food was not protected speech.

    I suggest they talk while giving out the food!

    And yes the taxpayers are basically saying we don't want no hobos in our park.

  11. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  12. FrankAlphaXII

    Thats my city for ya.

    People dont even know how messed up the City of Orlando is. I do. I live here. Im honestly kind of worried about having my door kicked in by the cops for what Im about to say. OPD's harassed me before for less of a reason.

    I was one of the people that sent this story the Reg's way and Im glad they actually did some research into it. There isnt much of an IT angle in what Im about to say, except toward the end. So if you're interested in that, skip this one.

    Anyway first, OPD is NOT arresting anyone for misuse of public property, Breach of the Peace or unlawful assembly. Those are all State Crimes, with the exception of misuse of public property which we don't have a law against (FS 870.02 - Unlawful Assembly, FS 877.03 - Breach of the Peace). What People are being arrested for is a violation of a city ordinance that was passed without any sort of State or Federal constitutional review because a member of the unelected Chamber of Commerce complained to his councilwoman, Patty Sheehan. Its amazing to me that Sheehan fights so hard for the civil rights for the gay community but does everything in her power to deny the civil rights of the very sizable homeless community in her district. She's a hypocrite. Plain and simple.

    Second, Its also not about where the food is sourced from. What they're doing *IS* subject under Florida Law to a county Health Department check, which to my knowledge the County has refused to carry out, but the reuse of food is governed by FS 570.0725 which allows and encourages the reuse of food by charitable organizations that would otherwise be thrown away. Food Not Bombs is protected by this statute especially as what they distribute is all vegetable based food, though not EVERYTHING they use is reused. Usually the Grocery distributors give them and the other food banks a great deal of stuff because otherwise they have to pay to have it hauled off.

    Third, there is a permit that can be issued for Group Feedings under this ordinance. Food Not Bombs is however an Anarchist group and as such refuses to play the city's fucked up money game and apply for a permit. The first wednesday after the city issued this ordinance and it entered into force they issued one to them, their local spokesman said he didnt recognize its validity, but he made the mistake of touching it, which to the city (though Ive yet to found a legal precedent for this except under the 15 year period that we were British subjects in Florida) makes the permit issue valid. The issue is that Its yet another permit that involves something to do with homeless people that the city's issued in their war on the homeless. The homeless have to cough up 40 bucks for a city permit to legally panhandle in "panhandling zones" in Downtown Orlando. Nobody obeys it and when OPD's collectively pissed off, they'll do a permit sweep and arrest someone. Not like they ever arrest the rapists, drug dealers, or people who commit assault with a deadly weapon Downtown. Simply doesnt happen. They'd rather harass people who can do nothing to fight them, usually have a mental disorder, and don't know their rights. For instance, a friend of mine was stabbed to death downtown about a month ago and the only reason anyone was arrested was that the perpetrator turned himself in when he found out about the death.

    Anyway, regardless of how messed up and morally wrong the city's acting, attacking anything aside from the City Government itsself, the Police, the Corrections Department, or the Courts (which I would welcome, maybe we could get a break from the Casey Anthony idiocy if they took the Ninth Circuit down) is not the answer. For example I rely on public transportation and given the economy and gas prices, alot of other people do as well. But they took down the public transportation authority's website over the weekend and noone could access bus schedules without going to the central station and getting a dead tree based schedule. The point is that making life difficult for people who have nothing to do with the cops or the Government, who also by and large do not support them, isn't the answer and its unwelcomed.

    The real targets are going untouched while they attack stuff like Universal and the Bus system. So fuck anonymous unless they start to understand the concept of attacking the people who deserve it. Their aim may be noble, but causing damage to entities that don't have anything to do with the real enemy isn't welcome.

    1. Gilbert Wham

      Ineresting points...

      ...very well made. Thanks for that.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @ FrankAlphaXII

      Not having lived in the Orlando area since '73, I can't say how messed up they've become. (Still have family in Florida, though.) However, you have to realize that Anonymous is an international group of skiddies. They may do some research for targeting of the LOIC, but how much is debatable. In this instance they are taking on large visible ones which mean that more people will see the results and possibly change their vacation plans for ideological reasons. The locals will get hit in the pocketbook and possibly blame the big money political interests for loss of revenue- the dollar being the bottom line. Perhaps this will persuade the local population to vote in better politicians in time and possibly lead to better law enforcement policies. (I agree that the police are overbearing and general arseh***es there, btw. Have been for years.)

      IMHO, you might become an activist, yourself, and take part in discussion on the various Anonymous channels to describe more worthy targets, and why, for the wrath of the righteous.

      Note: I don't use the LOIC, myself, and don't condone it's use. I do believe it can be a useful tool if used correctly, though.

  13. Gordon861

    Coming to London Soon

    Westminster Council are currently planning a similar law for their borough.

  14. MooseNC


    I don't think that Florida considers the homeless "people". Therefore, the people with the food are just littering.

  15. Anonymous Coward

    What is all the fuss about.

    In our town we are not allowed to feed the birds either.

    If you would there would be even more and their shit would be all over the town hall.

    May be that is the same rason in orlando. At least it would explain the 2 Mile radius.

  16. Bernard M. Orwell

    Our Beds are Burning.

    In the land of the free you need a permit to feed the homeless?

    You moronic, self-centered, amoral, capitalist, authoritarian scum. You have no right to call yourselves free, christian or moral while you allow this kind of thing to go on.

    I hope Anon rips "y'all" a new one and keeps doing so until you bloody well learn.

  17. disgruntled yank Silver badge

    pedantry alert

    In the US, it's one finger. Salute us with two, and we'll think you're doing a Churchill. Just as well, too, for all the commuters driving past the UK Embassy on Massachusetts Ave. NW are stressed enough without being sassed by the Churchill statue.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      You appear to have missed the point

      We had our statue give a two-fingered salute for a reason.

  18. Anonymous Coward


    first the anarchists and the class warfare folks demand higher fees and taxes and justify it with "everyone needs to pay their share".

    then they justify certain groups not to pay their share because they choose not to.

    Did they bother to provide toilet facilities?

    Why is it that anything is justified to help the "homeless" while us working folks who barely scrape by are expected to pay all the fees and put up with all the litter and human waste left behind? What is it about the perpetually and continually indigent that means they're allowed greater freedoms than those of us who support them?

    If this town had been a good "liberal" town like Berkeley, the event would have been done once, with big fanfare and lots of funding from showoffs and rich guilty consciences-then phased out quietly under "environmental" concerns.

    I can't walk certain parts of San Francisco and San Jose because of constant human waste on the sidewalk. can't have public toilets because the same people leaving the waste, abused the restrooms for drug use, prostitution, or making it "their" home and forcing the public away at knifepoint. But I sure get the "freedom" to pay to maintain all this stuff.

    Just so some people who consciously, deliberately decided, when in grade or high school, to ignore the "square" adults and start "experimenting" with drugs. Which is what the majority of the so-called "mentally ill" indigent are in this state. Another sizeable portion of the panhandler/trolls in SF are the college age kids "on walkabout" trying to relive some sort of cultural deadbeat experience their parents may have had-parents who often take home high six-figure salaries and can easily support their entitled crotchfruit. The guys who dropped out of high school to "be in a rock band" and have had no marketable job skills for the last decade are included in the above.

    I do not count the temporarily homeless-those who actually lost their jobs/homes/health through no constant history of bad decisions on their own. They're a very small minority of the handout culture. Most of them get themselves back self sufficient within a year regardless of how bad "the economy" is (since CA has actually been in the toilet economically since before the Dot-Com Bomb, the "economy" the rest of the nation is suffering has only caught up to what has been going on here)

    Been involved in social services for almost 15 years. I'm sure, however, all of you who read a study and once gave change to a homeless guy will tell me my observations and reports are wrong. And of course all of you making bank from government grants to "solve homelessness" by handing out iPads or some shite will work actively to cover your eyes and ignore the truth.

    the simple truth-most of the homeless/indigent put themselves there by constant, freely-decided choices. Most often over the advice of people who knew better but were ignored. I do not support making everyone else suffer for their choices.

    Me, if I make a mistake, I pay for and am punished. They make a mistake, I get the same.

    Freedom means the ability to succeed as well as fail, and take both the rewards and consequences from the result. Freedom is *not* making everyone else pay the consequences.

  19. Bernard M. Orwell

    @AC Lulz

    You insensitive, blinkered nob.

    How about someone who has been homeless, under none of the circumstances you describe (albeit in the UK, not your precious USA) telling you that your observations are wrong? Yeah, thats right, one right here fella.

    Rampant capitalism causes homelessness because some people are always going to end up trashed by your "live the dream" system.

    Don't believe me?

    Well, try going and chatting with some homeless yourself sometime and hear their stories, or better still, if you have the nerve, go and spend a month on the streets yourself.

    You'll swiftly change your tune.

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