Insurrection or Advocacy? Chicago Mayor Lightfoot Issues “Call to Arms” After Leaked Abortion Ruling

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) facing criticism over a tweet in which she issued a “call to arms” after the recent leaking of the abortion decision from the Supreme Court. In the aftermath of the firebombing of a pro-life office and the doxing of Supreme Court justices, the “call to arms” was alarming for many, particularly given the violent protests in Chicago in prior years. I do not believe that Lightfoot is encouraging anything other than peaceful advocacy. Yet, it is striking how virtually identical language has been used by Democrats to seek the disqualification of GOP members and criminal charges against figures like Donald Trump. Indeed, such rhetoric featured greatly in the second impeachment of Donald Trump.

Ligthfoot declared “To my friends in the LGBTQ+ community—the Supreme Court is coming for us next. This moment has to be a call to arms. We will not surrender our rights without a fight—a fight to victory!”


Democrats have been criticized for the use of inflammatory rhetoric in the past. One of the most notable and shocking incidents was in March 2020 when Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) stood in front of the Supreme Court to threaten Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh by name: “I want to tell you, Gorsuch, I want to tell you, Kavanaugh, you have released the whirlwind and you will pay the price! You won’t know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions.”

During the Trump impeachment, managers replayed the comments of  Trump from prior years to show how his words fueled divisions, critics were pointing to similar statements from the managers themselves. Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., the leading impeachment manager, was chided for using “fight like hell” in a 2019 interview with The Atlantic — the very words replayed repeatedly from Trump. He also used that phrase repeatedly in prior years to ramp up his supporters in fighting for Democratic control of Congress.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi blundered by appointing managers like Eric Swalwell, who is notorious for his inflammatory rhetoric. Swalwell’s comments not only include disturbing legal claims, but highly personal and offensive remarks like mocking threats against Susan Collins, R-Maine. Swalwell declared “Boo hoo hoo. You’re a senator who police will protect. A sexual assault victim can’t sleep at home tonight because of threats. Where are you sleeping? She’s on her own while you and your @SenateGOP colleagues try to rush her through a hearing.”

Managers focused on Trump statements that parallel those of Lightfoot. Trump urge his supporters to “fight like hell, and if you don’t fight like hell, you’re not going to have a country anymore.” He also told them: “We will not be intimidated into accepting the hoaxes and the lies that we’ve been forced to believe over the past several weeks.”

Yet, Trump also told his supporters that “everyone here will soon be marching over to the Capitol building to peacefully and patriotically make your voices heard.” He said the reason for the march was that “we are going to cheer on our brave senators and congressmen and women.” As for those opposing any electoral vote challenge, Trump said “we’re probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them. Because you’ll never take back our country with weakness.”

The fact is that I would oppose impeachment or charges for either Lightfoot or Trump for such rhetoric.

The Supreme Court has long rejected fluid standards in criminalizing speech. Indeed, a case based on this speech likely would fail in federal court. In Brandenburg v. Ohio, the Supreme Court refused to allow the criminalization of speech that actually calls for “the use of force or of law violation” unless it is imminent.

During the Trump impeachment, I warned about the slippery slope created by the articles given similar language used by Democrats in both houses to “fight” for the country and to “retake” Congress. During Trump’s 2017 inauguration, Democrats denounced his legitimacy as riots broke out in Washington involving violent groups.

Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) later called on people to confront Republicans in public; Rep. Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.) insisted during 2020’s violent protests that “there needs to be unrest in the streets.” Then-Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) said “protesters should not let up” even as many protests turned violent or deadly.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has condemned fellow members as effectively traitors and the “enemy within.” She was criticized last year for stating, in the midst of violent protests, that “I just don’t know why there aren’t uprisings all over the country. Maybe there will be.”

Even Fired FBI director James Comey has been given to reckless rhetoric, too. He recently said: “The Republican Party needs to be burned down … It’s just not a healthy political organization.” Likewise, Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin declared that “We have to collectively, in essence, burn down the Republican Party. We have to level them because if there are survivors, if there are people who weather this storm, they will do it again.” Since the Republican National Committee was targeted with a pipe bomb on Jan. 6, would that constitute incitement to arson or violence? Not under Brandenburg.

The Lightfoot comments only highlight the double standard applied by Democrats over free speech. Whether it is “disinformation” or violent speech, the Democrats have often excluded themselves from such standards. What is insurrectionary language for some is advocacy language for others. The alternative is to “fight like hell” for free speech . . . for everyone.


76 thoughts on “Insurrection or Advocacy? Chicago Mayor Lightfoot Issues “Call to Arms” After Leaked Abortion Ruling”

  1. She said specifically “Arms”. Call to Arms. Arms are weapons. Guns and such. It’s specific language. “Fight like Hell”, etc. is subjective. There is a difference there. We use that type phrase a lot when we’re fired up about..fill in the blank. But specifically Call to Arms? The hypocrisy. The liberal riots of 2020…dozens of people dead, more injured, billions of dollars of damage to small businesses, churches, and a few Federal Buildings. And yet Jan 6th is consistently brought up as proof that it’s the Right who’s violent. Jan 6th, one person died..a woman, upon attempting to enter the building. It was basically trespassing..wrong, stupid, but violent as compared to the never discussed deadly human and community/financial tragedy of the “mostly peaceful” 2020 violent riots. I’m no Republican, but I’ve jumped off this crazy Democrat train. It’s gone way too far left. Violence. There’s your crazy ass far righties out there and I can’t stand them, but the double standard stands.

  2. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) must be perp walked, charged with incitement to riot, violence, subversion, insurrection, treason and civil war, and deported, she being the descendant of freed slaves who, upon the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation, 1863, must have been deported per extant contemporary immigration law, the Naturalization Act of 1802, which required citizens to be “…free white person(s)….”

    There is no immigration statute of limitations with reference to illegal alien status.

  3. Jonathan: Your mantra is “free speech…for everyone”. Fine. So let’s discuss the ongoing free speech issue in Florida that, so far, you have intentionally ignored. Under the “Don’t Say Gay” law Rep. Gov. DeSantis signed classroom instruction on sexual orientation is banned in grades K-3. But this ban has made its way up to the high school level. At Lyman High School near Orlando yearbooks won’t be distributed until images of students holding rainbow flags and a “love is love” sign during a protest over DeSantis’ law are covered up. As we all know year books are very important to high schoolers who keep them for years after graduation. Lyman Principal Michael Hunter says the gay images should have been “caught earlier in the review process”. A school district spokesperson admits school policy allows Lyman to dedicate a separate page in the yearbook to the school’s Gay Straight Alliance Club. But he said the banned images implied Lyman “endorsed” the gay protest. Lyman officials had planned to re-print the yearbook but that would be too expensive so the images will be blacked out or covered. Students at Lyman are not happy and plan protests. One of the yearbook’s student editors-in-chief responded: “To have that {the images] covered up isn’t right…This is censorship”. .State Rep. Anna Eskamani echoed the student comments: “Students were empowered to craft a yearbook that reflects their lived experience of the academic year and did so with professionalism–sharing a piece of history on Lyman’s campus, one that should be reflected upon, not censored”.

    So now it appears that under DeSantis’ “Don’t Say Gay” mages of a gay protest will not be permitted in at least one Florida high school yearbook. Don’t you think that policy violates Florida student “free speech” rights? You could take up the student’s’ cause but I would bet dollars to donuts you won’t–because that does not fit into your specious argument that only conservative students are censored.

    1. Dennis would scream the loudest if this high school yearbook promoted the Christian religion. Dennis would calling for a separation of church and state. Make no mistake LGBTQ++++++ is a religion. Instead of being against the presentation of religion in schools he is all for religion in schools as long as it’s his religion.

  4. The Left is worse than you know, sir. When the haters like the mayor here threaten and insult our law abiding population they are calling for tens of thousands of murders. The Leftists and the Lost are on the same side and if the Lost hear that the Democrats have decreed another free murder, free thievery and free conflagration March and free for all it will be much worse than the BLM violent felonies and we’ll see just how blind we are to what actually faces this nation.

  5. Jonathan: I hate to say this but you are are embarrassing yourself. You say Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s “call to arms” over Alito’s draft opinion “only highlights the double standard applied by Democrats over free speech”. Seriously? A doubt a big city mayor wants thousands to march on the Supreme Court building to prevent the 5 conservative justices from holding a final vote to overturn Roe. There is a huge, huge difference between Lightfoot’s and Trump’s “call to arms”. We now know from the House Jan. 6 investigation that Trump and his co-conspirators planned well in advance for Jan. 6. They enlisted as stormtroopers the Proud Boys and other right-wing militias to storm the Capitol to prevent the counting of the electoral college votes–to “stop the steal” and keep Trump in power. When Trump told those assembled for the rally “every one here will now be marching over to the Capitol building” he knew what he wanted. He wanted to stop the peaceful transfer of power. It’s ludicrous to compare what Trump called for and Lightfoot’s rhetoric. We also know Trump is a coward. He never intended to lead his troops up to Capitol. He fled back to the Oval Office to watch the insurrection unfold on TV. If you’re in a fox hole you don’t want Trump at your back. Democrats won’t call for an assault on the Supreme Court building to stop the final count on Roe. That’s the difference between you, Trump and his supporters and Mayor Lightfoot.

    1. You regurgitate that spoonfed pablum all over yourself then strut it about like the Emperor in his silk suit.

  6. “I was for inflation before I was against inflation”, Joe Biden.

  7. “Insurrection or Advocacy? Chicago Mayor Lightfoot Issues “Call to Arms” After Leaked Abortion Ruling”

    – Professor Turley

    The “Call to Arms” will occur when China invades Taiwan because Joe Biden is in office.

    Russia would not have invaded Ukraine with President Donald J. Trump in office.

    Joe Biden stole the election and severely weakened America.

    After the “Call to Arms” for Taiwan, Joe Biden will have destroyed America.

    At some point, the Sleeping Giant will awaken; Joe Biden will be designated persona non grata, as will his legions.

    It will be too late.

  8. The quote attributed to the Washington Post’s Jennifer Rubin is just awful. Her sentiments echo the tone of Reinhard Heydrich at the Wannsee Conference. Substitute “Jews” for Republicans. She is, of course, not an anti-Semite or Nazi. But her naked rudeness does nothing to enhance our civil discourse.

    1. Thank you. It started with Hillary’s label for people who voted for Trump as Deplorables. Hitler used the word Undesirables for those he hated. I’m neither Republican or Democrat, I’ve voted both in the past, but the Left has gone so far left I never see me voting left again. Not only the labelling and hate, but intimidation and violence from the Left. Right before the election of 2020, I saw an older man wearing a Maga hat get his drink thrown in his face while he was sitting peacefully with his wife enjoying a meal outside the cafe. And people on college campuses with conservative views being chased by an angry mob of left thinking students. Ad nauseum. By Ms. Lightfoot specifically screeching for a “Call to Arms” is just that. Specific. Deadly weapons. Are we headed for summer riots this year like those of 2020? Dozens dead, more injured, cops included of course, damage and destruction of local small businesses and community structures, billions of dollars in damage across cities in America, and damage to even a few Federal Buildings. All of it ignored by the Left and our government run mass media. In this hair trigger environment, that’s dangerous and, to me, somewhat insurrection type language. But you’re right. And remember..not only Republicans voted for Trump. I did, a few of my centrist friends did as well, but we get thrown into the same bag as the Deplorable Right. Watch the Independents and people who are like me that are not aligned with ANY party. We are the ones the Left is really driving away. You’re right. Substitute the word Jew for Republican, and you can see the similar fascist thinking of an authoritarian type philosophy.

    1. Stooge, you’ve never been to Chicago. Their elections are none of your business.

  9. The paper written by one Justice is miles away from any decision that would affect us. Seems likely to me that he may be afraid that he doesn’t have the votes he needs to get his way so he thought that rarely used method would win his day. Isn’t going to happen and people ought to simmer down and let the process move forward. Again, Alito is not King of an mountain.

    The method itself must be stopped and if a Justice wants to spout off, limit it to using regular email and state right up front these are just his or her personal thoughts.

  10. It’s the fault of us the voters. Too many Americans love to hate and love violence. Until it’s viewed as “unpatriotic” to hate people we disagree with (or are different from us), it won’t change.

    Maybe American high school students (and members of Congress) need to restore “Debate Clubs”? Even if you disagree, even if you don’t respect another person’s point of view – be respectful and listen anyway. Never attack the “messenger” but debate the issue.

    How to change voters supporting and rewarding this behavior? Not sure how to do that. Just because someone else has a different life experience doesn’t make them bad or evil.

    1. I agree the root of our political problems are the voters. But do you really think the leftists would worry about being considered unpatriotic? The modern leftist would consider that a badge of honor. They have no respect for any views other than their own.
      The leftist view is that the American Constitution and those who believe in it are inherently racist and don’t deserve respect or even have a right to any opposing views.
      Maybe the way to reveal the hypocrisy of their position is for some ambitious researchers to do a 1618 Project revealing all the African tribes which were involved in the slave trade. This would include DNA research to expose the ancestry of African-Americans whose lineage traces back to those tribes which enslaved and sold the tribes they conquered. Maybe when they are forced to see that other African-Americans are also descendants of their descendants’ oppressors they might re-think things (or demand reparations from the people who actually enslaved their ancestors).
      The harsh reality is that modern leftism is really rooted in a nihilistic world view which makes behavioral changes unlikely.

  11. What is Pro Choice? Choosing to avoid contraception? Choosing to avoid responsibility for actions which may end in an abortion? Choice in this instance is avoidance nothing more or less. There are other means available to Women besides the draconian course of Abortion. Responsibilities to one’s own body and the sacred right of conception of posterity. There are instances where abortive actions (are/maybe) required (rape, incest, health): but as a form of birth control? We must as a Nation define/determine/resolve the eternal question when life begins in Law to put aside this very divisive issue.

  12. In history a call to arms was exactly what it meant. It was a call to pick up your weapons wether plow shears or firearms. She did not call for going forth to peacefully protest but to go forth with armament in hand. A particular armament used today is the Molotov cocktail which has already been used against a pro life office. Professor Turley is loathe to call it what it is but Mayor Lightfoot’s call to arms is not being thought of by her compatriots as anything other than a physical call to arms. Her call to arms is a direct order to BLM and Antifa. It is vital that we let her speak but it is also vital for us to understand what she is calling for. I only have to offer as witness to the proof of my statement the violent riots that she allowed to happen in Minneapolis. Like Kamala Harris she only wants more of the same. She calls for the revolution to finally be at hand.

  13. I honestly don’t know what to say. the Left’s calls for violence, even the hyperbolic variety, of late, should turn any reasonable person against them. This is hate, pure and simple. I am really having a tough time understanding how anyone that claims to be on the side of compassion keeps voting for this. I don’t like to compartmentalize if I can help it, but what we are espousing these days is madness.

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