Sedition Charges Are Almost Always a Terrible Idea, by J.D. Tucille

Weak governments throw people into jail for saying things the government doesn’t like. From J.D. Tuccille at reason.com:

In the wake of the January 6 storming of the Capitol, a popular new word in common usage is “sedition.” Horrified onlookersand conniving power brokersurge charging the participants and those who egged them on with “seditious conspiracy” under laws with a nasty history of politicized mischief. As such, “sedition” joins the recently popular “treason” on the list of overused and emotionally charged vocabulary terms with dangerous implications.

“For at least some of these protesters, particularly the ones that broke into the Capitol, I think there’s an extraordinarily strong case that they used force to delay, to hinder, the execution of our laws governing the election and how electoral votes are counted,” Professor Devin Schindler of Western Michigan University’s Cooley Law School told the Detroit Free Press. “It seems fairly clear to me, based on what we’re seeing, that folks are in fact, almost textbook violating this seditious conspiracy statute by using force to interfere with lawful government activity.”

In his analysis, Schindler echoed earlier comments by former Attorney General William Barr. According to the Wall Street Journal, Barr “told the nation’s federal prosecutors to be aggressive when charging violent demonstrators with crimes, including potentially prosecuting them for plotting to overthrow the U.S. government… He encouraged the prosecutors to seek a number federal charges, including under a rarely used sedition law, even when state charges could apply, the people said.”

Continue reading→

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.