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Remember when lefties liked free speech? (or claimed to)

Something in Bruce’s Twitter stream got me to notice this petition on Daily Kos, which is

…calling on Congress and the States [to] Act now to do whatever is within your power to pass a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United.

I don’t know when DK started the petition; probably a few years ago. But it’s still active. Now, in terms of the U.S. constitution, what caused the Citizens United decision? As Justice Kennedy wrote in 2010 for the majority:

If the First Amendment has any force, it prohibits Congress from fining or jailing citizens, or associations of citizens, for simply engaging in political speech.

So, the principle of Free Speech caused the decision. The First Amendment right of citizens, or associations of citizens, to engage in political speech – is what the decision expresses and defends.

If we do the math, the Daily Kos petition is effectively:

…calling on Congress and the States [to] Act now to do whatever is within your power to pass a constitutional amendment to overturn free speech.

…calling on Congress and the States [to] Act now to do whatever is within your power to pass a constitutional amendment to overturn the First Amendment right of citizens, or associations of citizens, to engage in political speech.

Example #12,770 of leftism actually being fascism and vice versa.

UPDATE: Something more current…With approval from the National Science Foundation, Indiana University researchers spent $1 million of taxpayer money on activities to silence non-leftie voices on Twitter. Here’s another link.

Lesbian Mayor of Houston Backs Down

Posted by V the K at 9:51 am - October 16, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech,Freedom

The lesbian mayor of Houston is backing down from her demand that churches in her city turn over all of their sermons, emails, and other communications so her lawyers could examine them for any criticism of her.

Mayor Parker admitted that the subpoenas were too broad, and that the pastors’ sermons should not have been included. “It’s not about what did you preach on last Sunday,” she said. “It should have been clarified, it will be clarified.”

However, she still maintains that the Government has the right to monitor the content of religious speech; because that’s who the Democrats are these days.

Censoring Speech for the Common Good

Posted by V the K at 10:15 am - August 27, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech

The same regime that destroyed Lois Lerner’s emails and then lied about it to cover up its persecution of conservative political groups is looking for ways to censor internet speech so as to “assist in the preservation of open debate.”

Through a National Science Foundation grant, the U.S. government is paying for the creation of a database of “suspicious memes” and other “false and misleading” political ideas posted on social media.

“[The proposed technology] could mitigate the diffusion of false and misleading ideas, detect hate speech and subversive propaganda, and assist in the preservation of open debate,” the grant states.

Those sentences should be horrifying to anyone who wants to continue to live in a free society, but unfortunately, a lot of people don’t. They want their feelings protected from being hurt by being exposed to ideas that challenge their prejudices.  e.g. Criticism of Obama’s policies, opposition to gay marriage, skepticism of human-caused global warming and anything else the left defines as “subversive” “misleading” or “hate speech.”

They want to silence the opposition, and they are working on the tools to do that.

Hat Tip: Sondra K



Oh Captain, My Captain

Posted by V the K at 10:01 am - August 23, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech

Captain Picard delivers a message to all of those who cheer when someone loses their job because they oppose gay marriage, or a business is forced by the heavy crushing hand of the state to participate in a gay wedding or provide abortion-inducing birth control against the will of its owners.

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[Not sure Sir Patrick Stewart would agree with Captain Picard; Stewart's kind of a moonbat.]

More Thoughtcrime Enforcement from the Intolerant Left

Posted by V the K at 1:16 pm - June 12, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech

Leftist union thugs are demanding that two managers be sacked for sporting stickers on their personal vehicles that hurt the feelers of a neurotic, hypersensitive gay person.

A union representing federal employees at Eglin Air Force base in Florida is demanding that two senior management officials be removed from their posts because they put decals on their personal trucks supporting Duck Dynasty star Phil Robertson.

Alan Cooper, the executive vice president of the local chapter of the American Federation of Government Employees, said one of the officials also displayed the “I Support Phil” decals in his office last month and offered them to subordinates.

“The BUE (bargaining union employee) was clearly offended and disgusted that a senior management official would display the decal on their pod,” read an email Cooper wrote.

“We took offense,” Cooper told me in a telephone interview. “These two particular individuals have a great amount of influence over individuals who may be gay, who may be African-American – and we have a concern they should not be in a position to exert that influence when it comes to promotions.”

Andrew Klavan Disapproves of Homo Fascism

Posted by V the K at 3:06 pm - June 3, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech,Gays & religion

Unlike some of the people who comment here, Andrew Klavan finds the heavy-handed fascism of the gay left somewhat distasteful.

I think Homofascism — this current movement to regulate and restrict opinions and outlooks toward homosexuality — indeed, toward anything — should be crushed. Lawsuits against photographers who won’t shoot gay weddings. Television show cancellations because the hosts oppose gay marriage. Attempts to silence anti-gay preaching or force churches to recognize gay marriages. Crushed, all of it. Crushed by the united voice of the people, crushed in courts of law, in legislatures, in businesses and in conversation. When someone is sued, attacked, shamed, boycotted or fired for opposing gay marriage or just opposing gayness in general, straight and gay people alike should protest. No one should lose his television show, no one should be dragged before a judge, no one should have his business threatened. Don’t tell me about a company’s right to fire its employees. It has the right, but it isn’t right. It’s unAmerican and it’s despicable.

Gay rights, like all rights, do not in any way supersede the rights of others. A free person may have any opinion about homosexuality he chooses — or about blackness or about Judaism or any other damned thing — and he should be able to speak that opinion out loud and act on that opinion if he does no immediate harm.

I guess Klavan is one of those crazy radical extremists who thinks the Constitution even protects the free speech of those who hurt gay people’s feelers.

Update: The Gay Left cannot be shamed by calling out their behavior as ‘fascist.’ They know they’re being fascists. They’re enjoying it, they’re getting off on it. All bullies get off on the power they wield over the less powerful.

Dominican Nazi Cab Driver Not Rewarded for Defying Stereotype

Posted by V the K at 8:34 pm - May 17, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech

Gabriel Diaz is a NYC cab driver of Dominican descent. He is also a proud National Socialist.

And he doesn’t just tell the media about his beliefs. He likes to wear a swastika armband while on the job driving around local citizens. This hasn’t pleased his bosses and he is currently suspended after numerous complaints about his armband were filed with the Taxi and Limousine Commission and the Anti-Defamation League.

But this cabbie, who is of Dominican-background, offers no genuine apologies for his armband or his beliefs, and is rather displeased with having to say sorry for his actions.

“If a Muslim can drive a cab wearing a turban, if a homosexual can walk around with a big rainbow flag, why can’t a person like me wear a Nazi armband?” Diaz explained to the New York Daily News.

“I don’t hate Jews. I’m critical of them, but I don’t hate them. That doesn’t mean that I’m anti-Semitic. That don’t make me a hater,” Diaz said. “Who says you have to be white to be a National Socialist? You don’t have to be white, it can be anybody.”

If he just wore a hammer-and-sickle, he would have no problem.

CNN Commentator: It’s OK to Punish Those Who Don’t Support Gay Marriage Because They’re Wrong

Posted by V the K at 4:09 pm - May 14, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech

Well, when you put it that way.

Whether it’s HGTV canceling the Benham Brothers show or the NFL fining players for tweeting negative remarks regarding Michael Sam’s kiss, what we’re witnessing is not a liberal assault on freedom of speech, religious intolerance or political correctness run amok. It’s just people saying the world isn’t flat.

It’s okay to punish people who don’t think the way you do. It seems so obvious now.

Nick Adds: It’s worth noting, that this very metaphor (“world isn’t flat”) is the same paradoxical charge against scientists (paradoxical because it is a scientist’s natural instinct to question and be critical and skeptical, especially in the face of loud unanimity of thought among peers) who dare express anything other than dying fealty to the religion of ACC. Keep in mind, these are the same folks who demand reason-based policy-making. Well, if mal-reasoning is the only thing to describe knuckle-dragging discomfort with homosexuality or mouth-breathing apostasy against the agreed-to gospel of climate change, who could be against it other than Neanderthals, right? We win because we’re smart and they’re stupid. QED.

The Closed Liberal Mind

Erin Ching, a student at Swarthmore College (Tuition: $60K per year) was quoted in her student newspaper with the following:

‘What really bothered me is the whole idea that at a liberal arts college we need to be hearing a diversity of opinion.’

And Rutgers University answers: “Right on, Sister.”

Former Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice abruptly withdrew Saturday from speaking at Rutgers University’s commencement address amid protests at her selection from faculty and students and denouncements of her as a “war criminal.”

The largest student newspaper, The Daily Targum, also urged the school to reconsider in a strong editorial that said that none of their commencement speakers should have “questionable politics.”

Other Rutgers campuses followed suit in calling for the forced withdrawal of Rice and students and faculty at the main campus staged a sit-in protest on Monday. During that protest, some participants held up signs that read “No honors for war criminals,”War criminals out” and “RU 4 Humanity?”

One notes that the Little Fascists of Rutgers had no protest at all when another Iraq War supporter, Hillary Rodham Clinton, spoke on campus. Curious, isn’t it?

Gay Marriage Advocates to Gay Mafia: “Calm the —- Down”

Rather belatedly, a group of prominent Gay Marriage supporters has signed an open letter politely asking the Gay Mob to stop persecuting people like Brendan Eich and be more tolerant of people who disagree with them.

The signatories of this statement are grateful to our friends and allies for their enthusiasm. But we are concerned that recent events, including the resignation of the CEO of Mozilla under pressure because of an anti-same-sex- marriage donation he made in 2008, signal an eagerness by some supporters of same-sex marriage to punish rather than to criticize or to persuade those who disagree. We reject that deeply illiberal impulse, which is both wrong in principle and poor as politics.

As a viewpoint, opposition to gay marriage is not a punishable offense. It can be expressed hatefully, but it can also be expressed respectfully. We strongly believe that opposition to same-sex marriage is wrong, but the consequence of holding a wrong opinion should not be the loss of a job. Inflicting such consequences on others is sadly ironic in light of our movement’s hard-won victory over a social order in which LGBT people were fired, harassed, and socially marginalized for holding unorthodox opinions.

Don’t expect cooler heads to prevail; the real force behind gay marriage activism has never been the desire for equality, but the desire for vengeance.


Justice Antonin Scalia – Domestic Terrorist

Posted by V the K at 8:07 pm - April 20, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech

Those perfidious Koch Brothers must have gotten to Justice Scalia. He’s talking the Libertarian crazy-talk.

You’re entitled to criticize the government, and you can use words, you can use symbols, you can use telegraph, you can use morse code, you can burn a flag. “It’s all expression and it’s all covered by the First Amendment.” …

The Constitution is not a living organism for Pete’s sake. It’s a law. It means what it meant when it was adopted,” he said.

After his prepared remarks, Scalia took questions from eager law students who lined the aisles of the theatre. His remarks there were more candid, pointing to the Washington, D.C. v. Heller opinon — a second-amendment case — as his proudest moment on the court.

When another students asked about the constitutionality of income tax, he assured the student that the government could, in fact, take his money.

But if it reaches certain point, perhaps you should revolt,” Scalia advised the young man.

Criticize the Government? In the Age of the Lightbringer? Blasphemy! President Obama and Mr. Harry Reid better send the SWAT Teams into the Supreme Court and put down this sedition and insurrection!

On the Progressive Left, Zero Tolerance for Free Speech

Posted by V the K at 11:29 am - April 18, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech

What with Brendan Eich being ousted from Mozilla for not agreeing with the Progressive Left on gay marriage, university professors calling for “climate change deniers” to be thrown in prison for their heresies (Galileo Galilei would be having a good chuckle about that), and the University of Michigan and Brandeis University caving to Islamist demands not to let a feminist atheist critic of Islam speak on their campuses… it’s pretty clear the Progressive … and especially, the “Academic” … Left has adopted a Zero Tolerance policy for speech that falls outside their Dogma.

The brilliant Mark Steyn wrote a brilliant essay on the topic.

I heard a lot of that kind of talk during my battles with the Canadian ‘human rights’ commissions a few years ago: of course, we all believe in free speech, but it’s a question of how you ‘strike the balance’, where you ‘draw the line’… which all sounds terribly reasonable and Canadian, and apparently Australian, too. But in reality the point of free speech is for the stuff that’s over the line, and strikingly unbalanced. If free speech is only for polite persons of mild temperament within government-policed parameters, it isn’t free at all. So screw that. [Emphasis Mine]

But I don’t really think that many people these days are genuinely interested in ‘striking the balance’; they’ve drawn the line and they’re increasingly unashamed about which side of it they stand. What all the above stories have in common, whether nominally about Israel, gay marriage, climate change, Islam, or even freedom of the press, is that one side has cheerfully swapped that apocryphal Voltaire quote about disagreeing with what you say but defending to the death your right to say it for the pithier Ring Lardner line: ‘“Shut up,” he explained.’

By the way, a left-wing show business person who approvingly noted Mark Steyn’s defense of Free Speech was hammered for it by his fellow “tolerant” leftists.

Here’s how it is, my pretties. People who are confident that they can win an argument don’t insist that the other side not be allowed to argue.

Progressives: Not Fans of Free Speech

Posted by V the K at 3:28 pm - April 3, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech,Ideas & Trends

Interesting post over at the Volokh Conspiracy analyzing the dissent of the left-wing Supreme Court Justices in the recent McCutcheon campaign contribution case. This summation does not do it justice, so, by all means read the whole thing.

The takeaway is this: To the Conservative Right, Free Speech is a basic human right. To the Progressive Left, Free Speech is a civil right, that is only worthy of protection to the extent that it serves the interest of the State. The dissent in McCutcheon relies on the latter conception of speech to justify limiting people’s ability to participate in the political process.

Justice Breyer’s dissent today shows the way, as he revives the old Progressive conception of freedom of speech as serving instrumental purposes (which he calls “First Amendment interests”), rather than protecting individual rights or reining in potential government abuses.

We on the right see the world very differently from our opponents on the left. You may also note that all four “liberal” justices agreed that Free Speech is only a right to the extent that it advances the state’s interests.

Our freedoms are hanging by a very slender thread indeed.

BTW, Democrats have responded to the McCutcheon ruling with the usual deranged histrionics. However, none of them have put their newly found outrage into practice by renouncing donations from George Soros, Tom Steyer, or any of the other lefty billionaires financing Democrat campaigns.

University Issues “Mel Gibson-Style” Apology to Women Assaulted by Feminist Professor

In a follow-up to the incident in which a University of California Feminist Professor assaulted a teenage girl who was advocating an anti-abortion position in the university’s “Free Speech Zone,” the University has issued a fauxpology.

In a long-winded 1,000-word letter that reads more like a diatribe than a mea culpa, University of California at Santa Barbara Vice Chancellor Michael Young eventually conceded that women’s studies professor Mireille Miller-Young should not have snatched a pro-life sign from 16-year-old Thrin Short, giving backhanded praise to the framers of the Constitution.

“Our Founding Fathers – all white men of privilege, some even slave owners – got it right when designing the First Amendment of the Constitution,” Young wrote in an open memo to the student body.

The price of freedom of speech, Young was enlightened enough to acknowledge, is that students, staff and faculty must tolerate “outside groups and individuals coming here to promote an ideology, to promulgate particular beliefs (at times extreme beliefs), or simply to create discord that furthers a certain personal agenda.””Some passionately believe in their causes, while others peddle hate and intolerance with less-than-noble aims,” Young added, mentioning “evangelical types.”

Translation: “We’re sorry we violated the free speech rights of you racist, bigoted, stupid, invisible-magical-sky-god-worshipping hatemongers; rights that were granted to you by dirty, rotten white slaveowners.”

It is reminiscent of the apology Mel Gibson gave after making anti-semitic comments.


We Like #BanBossy!

Yes, it’s a bumper sticker!

Hat tip, Powerline. Also this nifty graphic, hat tip Granite Grok:

You can find a larger, clearer version here.

Harassment, censorship and disease

Some quick links.

Thanks to reader Peter H, for about half the items!

Remember When Liberals Used to Believe This?

Posted by V the K at 11:19 pm - February 24, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech,Freedom

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“Shut Up,” They Explained

Posted by V the K at 7:18 pm - February 24, 2014.
Filed under: Free Speech

The progressive left has become more and more hostile toward Free Speech, and especially the kind of Free Speech that shows that the things the progressive left believes in are a load of hooey.

Now, some will argue that these are isolated cases, and that progressives are not universally hostile to the notion of free speech and free debate.

But notice, it is *always* the Progressive Left arguing to shut down speech.

What If A&E Were a Bakery…

Posted by V the K at 12:36 am - December 29, 2013.
Filed under: Free Enterprise,Free Speech

One of the more interesting things to happen since the ‘Duck Dynasty’ drama moved in to fill the void in a very slow holiday news cycle is that the left suddenly became champions of employers’ rights. Employers may not have the right to refuse to provide employees with free contraception, according to the left, but they sure do have the right to fire and punish people who make GLAAD all mad and stuff.

But what if the scenario were different? What if A&E were a bakery that, as a matter of company policy, did not provide cakes for same sex weddings. And what if Phil Robertson were an employee of that company who spoke out against that policy and was fired. Would GLAAD and the left still champion an employer’s right to fire an employee simply for saying things the management disagreed with?

For people who are intellectually consistent, the rights of the employer would not change based on the content of the speech. However, one cannot help but think that the left would respond differently if a different ox were being gored.


Thought for the day

Re: the Obamacare, shutdown, budget, default and debt ceiling debates…

I’m sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you’re not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we’re Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration.

Oh wait, did I say that? Or some jihadist American Taliban terrorist bomb-throwing hostage-taking TeaBaggerParty Ted Cruz-loving anarchist wingnut grandmother, maybe?

No, it was Hillary Clinton saying it about an earlier administration that was quaintly civil to its critics, compared to the present one.