Public Defender Refuses To Remove “Black Lives Matter” Pin Despite Judicial Order

black-lives-matter-button-225Deputy PD, Erika Ballou, has refused to comply with a judicial order to remove a Black Lives Matter pin from her blouse — a clear violation of court rules. As we recently discussed with regard to such pins, judges maintain basic rules of decorum and dress in their courtrooms, particularly in barring political symbols that may influence a jury or witnesses. What is astonishing is not just that Ballou defied the court but that Clark County Public Defender Phil Kohn was standing next to her and a dozen defense lawyers stood behind her in support.

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University of Miami Cancels Milo Yiannopoulos Event In The Name Of Security

200px-UMiamiSeal.svgAnother university has cancelled a conservative speaker under the guise of security concerns. The speaker is Milo Yiannopoulos who has repeatedly been disrupted or cancelled in his effort to speak on campuses (as well as being barred by Twitter). Yiannopoulos attracts considerable opposition and seems to relish the controversy with his “Dangerous Faggot” tour.

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Supreme Court Lifts Stay On Senate Enforcement Of Subpoena In

senate_large_sealYesterday, I testified about the subpoena power of Congress under Article I and briefly discussed the recent free speech challenge to the Senate subpoena issued against I mentioned in the hearing that the district court had issued a sweeping reaffirmation of congressional subpoena authority, but that Chief Justice John Roberts had issued a stay. Now, the Supreme Court denied the appeal. The decision further strengthens the case of the House Science Committee.

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Supreme CourtThis afternoon, the Brown family filed its appeal with the United States Supreme Court in the “Sister Wives” case. The case is Brown v. Buhman, No. 14-4117. As lead counsel for the Browns, I am joined on the petition by co-counsel Thomas Huff and we benefited from the input of our long-time co-counsel in Utah, Adam Alba. The petition asks the Court to resolve a longstanding conflict among the courts of appeals concerning the extent to which the government can strategically moot a constitutional challenge to a statute by announcing a new non-enforcement policy during the pendency of litigation. The petition is attached below.

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Planned Parenthood Law Criticized As Major Rollback on Free Speech and Press Freedoms

200px-Logo_plannedparenthoodCalifornia flagWe have often discussed how free speech is rapidly being curtailed on college campuses in the name of fighting intolerance and ill-defined “microaggressions.” California lawmakers are showing the same dismissive attitude in legislation that is a response to the recent scandal over secretly taped statements by Planned Parenthood officials. The videotapes by activists caused a national backlash against Planned Parenthood so liberal politicians are moving to stamp out future “gotcha” films by sharply curtailing free speech and press freedoms. Democratic state Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, Assemblyman Jimmy Gomez, and other Democrats dismissed vehement objections from the ACLU, civil liberties, and press freedom groups. I understand the objections to the videotape of Planned Parenthood and the alleged unfairness in editing. However, the solution is not to further criminalize this area of free speech and press freedoms.

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Native Americans Protesting Pipeline Attacked By “Goon Squad” Using Dogs And Pepper Spray

By Darren Smith, Weekend Contributor.

Attack Dogs, Native American Blood

In a shameful and terrible scene reminiscent of police attacks against civil rights advocates and union busting of the 1920’s, the Dakota Access pipeline company dispatched its “goon squad” which unleashed attack dogs and pepper spray, injuring several Native American protesters. What began as a peaceful protest deteriorated into a new and shameful moment in today’s America, symbolized quite fittingly with images of Native Americans’ blood in the teeth of Corporate America’s attack dogs.
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Purdue Follows University of Chicago In Standing Ground In Favor Of Free Speech

Purdue_University_Seal.svgWe recently discussed the courageous stand of the University of Chicago against the growing speech codes and “safe spaces” in campuses around the country. Now, Purdue University has taken its own stand in favor of free speech in adopting “the Chicago principles.”

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