|(Can you tell it's a slow day at work?)
||[Feb. 26th, 2003|02:06 pm]
In an 8-1 decision today, the Supreme Court protected the continued existence of the First Amendment. The Pro-Life/Pro-Choice component of using RICO laws to squelch unpopular viewpoints was the least important part of this decision. Even if you are pro-choice, as I am, the notion that peaceful protest could be prevented by the threat of vicious economic reprisal was a dark shadow over the future of grassroots change.
The most vile aspect of the RICO fiasco was watching people like Ted Kennedy gleefully embrace RICO as a way to shut up those pesky protesters. Never mind that criminal sanctions already exist if they engage in criminal behavior, we want to shut them up entirely. This is the same Ted Kennedy who threatened to filibuster RICO at its inception because he feared it would be used against war protesters and civil rights activists, many of whom do not have clean hands when it comes to destructive protest behavior? What Ted really wanted was to shut up people who don’t think like him. That isn’t liberalism; it’s Left-Wing fundamentalism.
Freedom of speech means freedom for all speech – especially the kind we don’t like. When the world turned upside down in the 60s, the very people who are trying to limit conservative outcry were the ones in the minority, frowned upon and regarded as troublemakers. They relied on the very freedoms they want to take away to make the world listen. How smug is it to say that now that we—who are obviously correct and therefore superior—are in power, we don’t want to hear any of this whining from you who don’t agree with us. Do they truly believe that the tide won’t turn, and they are safe from ever facing sanctions from the very rules with which they are attempting to oppress distasteful points of view?
Fortunately the Supreme Court was there to save these people from themselves—and the rest of us from them. A round of applause for the Supremes!