DisruptJ20: The Justice Department Demands 1.3 Million IP Addresses and Other Information On Trump Critics

YC_kStF9US-DeptOfJustice-Seal_svgBelow is my column in USA Today on a troubling warrant issued by the Justice Department to force the disclosure of visitors to an anti-Trump site.  The DisruptJ20 case raises very serious questions regarding political speech and associational rights.

Here is the column:

 

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Pronoun Prison: California Moves Toward Criminalizing The Refusal To Use The Correct Pronoun For Transgender People

California flagThe California State Senate is considering a bill that would make it a crime to  “willfully and repeatedly” refuse “to use a transgender resident’s preferred name or pronouns” in a public health, retirement or housing institution.  State Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco) has introduced  SB 219  with a variety of transgender protections but the pronoun controversy is likely to get the most attention.  Violators face a year in jail and a potential $1000 fine.

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High School Teen Charged With Manslaughter After Strangling His Mother’s Abusive Ex-Boyfriend To Death

choke16n-1-webThere is a tragedy unfolding in the Bronx where Luis Moux, 18, a football high school player is facing manslaughter charges.  He allegedly choked his mother’s ex-boyfriend to death Monday after discovering his mother’s abusive ex-boyfriend beating her. It is the prototypical heat of passion case and the prosecutor elected to charge for manslaughter rather than a high class of homicide. However, there remains the question of whether he should be convicted for killing the man and whether this might be a case of jury nullification where jurors simply refuse to convict on these facts.

 

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Four Arrested In Destruction Of Confederate Statue In North Carolina

Cfakepathmugshots212_20170816_180608There are now four protesters arrested for the destruction of a roughly century-old statue of a Confederate soldier in North Carolina.  The bold act of property destruction was carried out in front of news cameras in broad daylight.  As a history nut, it is painful to see old works of art destroyed in this fashion. The arrested include Takiyah Thompson, 22, Dante Strobino, 35, Ngoc Loan Tran, 24, and Peter Gilbert, 39.

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Charlottesville Protest Leads To Call For Expansion of Hate Crime and Terrorism Laws

james-alex-fields-jr-f77d1f9e078c37aeBelow is my column in The Hill on the calls for hate crime and terrorism charges against James Fields and possibly others.  The response is understandable, but the expansion of these laws raise serious free speech concerns that should be considered before prosecutors move beyond the current murder charge.

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Pelosi Calls For Permit To Be Revoked For Rally Of Pro-Trump Prayer Group In San Francisco

220px-nancy_pelosiHouse Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi has always displayed a rather fluid view of constitutional rights (though in fairness, that is not a major distinction from other politicians).  However, this week Pelosi appeared to embrace content based discrimination in the area of free speech.  Pelosi is demanding that the National Park Service reconsider a permit for what she called a “white supremacist rally” in San Francisco.  In light of the violence in Charlottesville, Pelosi insists that “The NPS should reevaluate its decision and its capacity to protect the public during such a toxic rally.” The problem is leaving it to the government to declare what groups are toxic from Pelosi’s list of constructive banned viewpoints.  I felt ill watching the torch march of neo-Nazis in Charlottesville as white supremacists yelled disgusting anti-Semitic and racist chants.  It reminded me of the Nazi rallies before World War II — before my father and so many others went off to fight fascism.  However, despite that revulsion, I remain committed to the right of everyone to speak and protest regardless of the content of their views.

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Trump Administration Demands Information On Over A Million Visitors To Anti-Trump Website

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