Category Archives: Civil Liberties

I was assaulted at Berkeley because I’m conservative. Free speech is under attack. By Hayden Williams

I was never punched at my grad school alma mater, UC Berkely, but even back then it was a tough place to be anything but a liberal Democrat. It looks like it’s gotten tougher. From Hayden Williams at usatoday.com:

The punch I took on campus was not an isolated incident. Leftists are targeting conservative students across the country for their political beliefs.

The past two weeks have been surreal. On Feb. 19, while recruiting conservative students on campus at the University of California-Berkeley, I was assaulted by a violent leftist. A little more than a week later, I got to shake hands with the president of the United States and address an audience at the Conservative Political Action Conference about why it’s more important than ever to protect free speech on our college campuses.

As a field representative for the Leadership Institute, I travel to campuses throughout California helping conservative clubs recruit and train new members. I’ve seen the intolerance and hate toward conservatives on our  campuses with my own eyes, and the only difference between what happened to me on Feb. 19 and every other day is that the event was caught on video.

Conservative students across the country have suffered verbal and physical assault, social ostracism and even academic persecution for voicing their opinions on political topics. This is because young liberals believe that they are on the morally righteous side in a culture war and, in order to win, they must silence any form of dissent. Leftists and the progressives aspire to nothing less than to make it de facto impossible to be conservative in public.

Continue reading

Advertisements

Democratic Presidential Contender Tulsi Gabbard Takes a Strong Stand For WikiLeaks and the Freedom of Press, by Cassandra Fairbanks

Tulsi Gabbard is the only Democratic presidential candidate with any balls/ovaries. From Cassandra Fairbanks at thegatewaypundit.com:

Democratic presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard, who has already taken a lot of heat from her party for being outspoken against senseless war and regime change, has released a strong statement in support of WikiLeaks.

Gabbard, who is also a veteran, took to Twitter to talk about the dangers of designating the award-winning news organization a “hostile intelligence agency.

“If the government can change the designation Wikileaks from being a news organization (Obama Admin’s designation of Wikileaks) to a hostile intelligence agency (Trump Admin’s designation), then any entity – online and offline – is in danger of being designated a ‘hostile intelligence service’ if they carry out investigative reporting that the US government or a particular administration considers to be hostile to itself,” Gabbard wrote in a series of tweets on Saturday. “This will have a chilling effect on investigative reporting of powerful government agencies or officials, including the president, intel agencies, etc. This is a serious breach of our constitutional freedoms and every American – Democrat, Republican or Independent – must stand up against it.”

Continue reading→

Defying Wikileaks Grand Jury, Chelsea Manning Carries on Tradition of Resistance and Goes To Jail, by Kevin Gosztola

Chelsea Manning has refused to testify before a grand jury about matters pertaining to Wikileaks. From Kevin Gosztola at shadowproof.com:

A federal judge sent Chelsea Manning to jail for refusing to testify before a grand jury that is investigating WikiLeaks.

“I will not comply with this, or any other grand jury,” Manning declared in a statement. “Imprisoning me for my refusal to answer questions only subjects me to additional punishment for my repeatedly-stated ethical objections to the grand jury system.”

“The grand jury’s questions pertained to disclosures from nine years ago and took place six years after an in-depth computer forensics case, in which I testified for almost a full day about these events. I stand by my previous public testimony.”

“I will not participate in a secret process that I morally object to, particularly one that has been historically used to entrap and persecute activists for protected political speech,” Manning added.

On March 6, Manning appeared before the grand jury after she was granted a minor form of immunity for her testimony.

“All of the substantive questions pertained to my disclosures of information to the public in 2010—answers I provided in extensive testimony during my court-martial in 2013,” Manning stated afterward. “I responded to each question with the following statement: ‘I object to the question and refuse to answer on the grounds that the question is in violation of my First, Fourth, and Sixth Amendment, and other statutory rights.’”

Judge Claude Hilton had Manning jailed on a civil charge of contempt. She will be jailed as long as she refuses to testify or as long as the grand jury is empaneled in Alexandria, Virginia.

Continue reading

Source: Leaked Documents Show the U.S. Government Tracking Journalists and Immigration Advocates Through a Secret Database, by Tom Jones, Mari Payton, and Bill Feather

Regardless of how you feel about immigration, this is disturbing. From Tom Jones, Mari Payton, and Bill Feather at nbcsandiego.com:

The documents detail an intelligence-gathering effort by the United States and Mexican authorities, targeting more than 50 people including journalists, an attorney, and immigration advocates

This story has been updated with a new statement from Customs and Border Protection and a response from the ACLU.

Documents obtained by NBC 7 Investigates show the U.S. government created a secret database of activists, journalists, and social media influencers tied to the migrant caravan and in some cases, placed alerts on their passports.

At the end of 2018, roughly 5,000 immigrants from Central America made their way north through Mexico to the United States southern border. The story made international headlines.

As the migrant caravan reached the San Ysidro Port of Entry in south San Diego County, so did journalists, attorneys, and advocates who were there to work and witness the events unfolding.

But in the months that followed, journalists who covered the caravan, as well as those who offered assistance to caravan members, said they felt they had become targets of intense inspections and scrutiny by border officials.

One photojournalist said she was pulled into secondary inspections three times and asked questions about who she saw and photographed in Tijuana shelters. Another photojournalist said she spent 13 hours detained by Mexican authorities when she tried to cross the border into Mexico City. Eventually, she was denied entry into Mexico and sent back to the U.S.

Continue reading→

 

Forced Blood Draws and Implied Consent Laws Make a Mockery of the Fourth Amendment, by John W. Whitehead

When they can take samples from your body without a warrant or consent, there is no Fourth Amendment left. From John W. Whitehead at rutherford.org:

“The Fourth Amendment was designed to stand between us and arbitrary governmental authority. For all practical purposes, that shield has been shattered, leaving our liberty and personal integrity subject to the whim of every cop on the beat, trooper on the highway and jail official.”—Herman Schwartz, The Nation

You think you’ve got rights? Think again.

All of those freedoms we cherish—the ones enshrined in the Constitution, the ones that affirm our right to free speech and assembly, due process, privacy, bodily integrity, the right to not have police seize our property without a warrant, or search and detain us without probable cause—amount to nothing when the government and its agents are allowed to disregard those prohibitions on government overreach at will.

This is the grim reality of life in the American police state.

Our so-called rights have been reduced to technicalities in the face of the government’s ongoing power grabs.

Consider a case before the U.S. Supreme Court (Mitchell vs. Wisconsin) in which Wisconsin police officers read an unconscious man his rights and then proceeded to forcibly and warrantlessly draw his blood while he was still unconscious in order to determine if he could be charged with a DUI.

To sanction this forced blood draw, the cops and the courts have hitched their wagon to state “implied consent” laws (all of the states have them), which suggest that merely driving on a state-owned road implies that a person has consented to police sobriety tests, breathalyzers and blood draws.

More than half of the states (29 states) allow police to do warrantless, forced blood draws on unconscious individuals whom they suspect of driving while intoxicated.

Seven state appeals courts have declared these warrantless blood draws when carried out on unconscious suspects are unconstitutional. Courts in seven other states have found that implied consent laws run afoul of the Fourth Amendment. And yet seven other states (including Wisconsin) have ruled that implied consent laws provide police with a free pass when it comes to the Fourth Amendment and forced blood draws.

With this much division among the state courts, a lot is riding on which way the U.S. Supreme Court rules in Mitchell and whether it allows state legislatures to use implied consent laws as a means of allowing police to bypass the Fourth Amendment’s warrant requirement in relation to forced blood draws and unconscious suspects.

Continue reading

The Return of the Deodand, by Jeff Thomas

Civil asset forfeiture is the resurrection of an old and hated practice. From Jeff Thomas at international man.com:

In 1066, my family were centred in Somerset, England, where, if a horse ran over and killed someone, or a boat capsized, and caused a drowning, that horse or boat was given over to the victim’s family, under “noxal surrender.”

Alternatively, if an animal or object were responsible for the death of a person other than its owner, it could be taken and sold, and the proceeds passed to the family of the deceased.

One can see the purpose here – to provide some sort of compensation for those aggrieved.

However, as readers will know, the Normans came over to the British Isles in 1066 and conquered much of England.

Subsequently, the practice of noxal surrender was formalized into English common law and enforced by the state.

And, of course, as we know, when the state takes charge of anything, no matter how insignificant, it eventually finds a way to turn that power into a means of state profit.

The state, by its very nature is a parasite. It produces nothing. It serves to extract value from those who do produce.

And so, beginning in the late eleventh century, the deodand was introduced into law. A deodand was defined as a chattel that had caused a death and was therefore guilty of a crime against God. The Crown would find the chattel itself guilty of being a deodand, would confiscate the chattel, sell it and give the proceeds to “a pious purpose” – not to the aggrieved party.

Once the aggrieved party was removed from the equation, it wasn’t difficult to expand the law to include not only the loss of the chattel, but a fine of equal value to the chattel.

Continue reading

A Project to Transform France, by Guy Millière

Emmanuel Macron warns against anti-Semitism among the Yellow Vests, but ignores the obvious anti-Semitism of much of France’s Muslim population. From Guy Millière at gatestoneinstitute.org:

  • “It is up to us to give a political meaning to the [“yellow vest”] revolt. The goal is not simply to challenge an increase in taxes, but the political system that induces it…” — Elias d’Imzalene, French Islamist preacher, November 23, 2018.
  • “Macron hates the yellow vests and wants them to vanish. He wants to win European elections and needs the Muslim vote. He knows perfectly well who the anti-Semites are today, but will not attack them. He needs them. He attacks [only] those who are dangerous to him. “— Éric Zemmour, French author, February 19, 2019.
  • Other people noted that holding a demonstration that excluded the right-wing National Rally party was a move aimed at diverting attention from the real anti-Semitic danger. They also suggested that political parties which support the murderers of Jews were precisely those which deny that radical Islam is a danger.
After sixteen Saturday demonstrations by the “yellow vests,” who began in November by protesting French President Emmanuel Macron’s increase in fuel prices, the controversy seems to have taken a darker turn. Pictured: “Yellow vest” protestors near the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France, on March 2, 2019.

After sixteen Saturday demonstrations by the “yellow vests,” who began in November by protesting French President Emmanuel Macron’s increase in fuel prices, the controversy seems to have taken a darker turn.

Continue reading