Freedom: Void where prohibited by law. – Tea Party Nation

Freedom: Void where prohibited by law. – Tea Party Nation.

Posted by Judson Phillips

If you want to understand liberalism and where the left wants to take America, it was on full display yesterday in the United States Senate.

 Surprisingly, outside of the conservative blogosphere and some conservative talk radio, little was said about one of the most outrageous assaults on freedom in modern time.

 What was said and what is the threat?

 Yesterday, in the United States Senate, New York Senator Chuck Schumer, Democrat and fan boy for dictators around the world made a startling pronouncement. 

 He said, “I believe there ought to be limits because the First Amendment is not absolute. No amendment is absolute. You can’t scream ‘fire’ falsely in a crowded theater. We have libel laws. We have anti-pornography laws. All of those are limits on the First Amendment. Well, what could be more important than the wellspring of our democracy? And certain limits on First Amendment rights that if left unfettered, destroy the equality — any semblance of equality in our democracy — of course would be allowed by the Constitution.”

“And the new theorists on the Supreme Court who don’t believe that, I am not sure where their motivation comes from, but they are just so wrong. They are just so wrong.”

 Gee Chuck, don’t wait.  Go rip the Constitution from the National Archives building in Washington and just rip it to shreds.

 Schumer was speaking in favor of the DISCLOSE Act which would prevent political organizations, primarily conservative organizations, from protecting their donors by not being forced to disclose them.

 Why do conservative donors need protection?

 Ask the donors to the Mitt Romney campaign that Barack Obama has singled out.   Ask the donors to ALEC who have been harassed and threatened.  Ask the donors who gave to the Prop 8 campaigns in California who had to endure harassment from leftist activists outraged that they exercised their First Amendment rights. 

 What Schumer really believes is that there should be free speech for the Party of Treason and left wing activists and not for conservatives. 

 If Chuck Schumer had his way, America would be a one party socialist state.

 The outrage is not simply that a United States Senator said that on the floor of the Senate.   He is in the leadership of the Senate Democrats.  Has any Democrat said a negative word about what he said?  Has any Republican Senator jumped up to complain that Schumer wants to scrap our rights of free speech?  No, they are too busy being “bipartisan.”

 Where are the outraged newspapers calling for Schumer to at least retract his statement, if not resign for wanting to eliminate free speech?

 The answer is there are none.

 There are different types of speech.   The type of speech that Schumer wants to restrict is political speech.  This is the type of speech our founding fathers and the Supreme Court have always said is the most protected classification of speech. 

 Of course Chuck Schumer and the Party of Treason do not like this.  They want anyone who disagrees with them silenced.  They do not believe in freedom or the bill of rights.

 This is the danger America currently faces.  One of our two major political parties no longer believes in freedom or liberty.  Instead of believing in God given, inalienable rights, the Democrats simply believe that our liberties are grants from the government, which can be taken or given at the whim of the government.

 We are living in a perilous era when people who control parts of our government believe that.

 Chuck Schumer’s beliefs are right in line with Hugo Chavez, the Castro brothers, Mao, Pol Pot, Stalin, Lenin and Hitler. 

 Political speech was the one thing they would not allow.  With people like Chuck Schumer in positions of power, we edge closer towards the day where liberty and freedom are nothing but memories and stories we will tell our grand children about.


Breaking News update: First Amendment repealed by Maryland Court – Tea Party Nation

Breaking News update: First Amendment repealed by Maryland Court – Tea Party Nation.

Posted by Judson Phillips

Liberals do not like the First Amendment and a Judge in Maryland sent a blogger to jail yesterday for the horrible crime of blogging.

 Aaron Walker has been one of the bloggers leading the fight to expose far left activist Brett Kimberlin and his background as a convicted bomber.   Kimberlin has waged lawfare against Aaron Walker, using the legal system to badger, bully and try to send him to jail.

 Yesterday, Aaron went to court to answer an application for a Peace Order.  Maryland apparently calls its orders “Peace Orders.”  These orders have different names in different states.  Primarily they are given out as a part of domestic relations, but many states have expanded them to include other potential offenses such as stalking.

 Kimberlin claimed that Aaron threatened him by writing blogs and then claimed he was being contacted.  According to other bloggers who have written about this, the contact came in the form of Google alerts that notified Kimberlin every time someone had either blogged about him or posted on Aaron’s blog. 

 There were a lot of problems with this whole case.  First, Kimberlin got the kind of order that is issued ex parte.  In plain non-lawyer English, that means that he gets to go down and see a judge without giving notice to the other side and seek a restraining order

 Ex parte restraining orders of all varieties used to be fairly rare.   Now they are given out like candy at Halloween.   The ex parte restraining order system is the most abused facet of the American legal system.

 Aaron made a huge mistake going into court as he represented himself.  I do not know what Aaron’s area of expertise is, but there is a reason for the old adage the lawyer who represents himself in court has a fool for a client. 

 Based on all of the reports, it appears that Aaron became agitated and alienated the judge.   Lawyers should never represent themselves because it is personal.  I strongly suspect Kimberlin was able to egg Aaron on just a little and that pushed him too far.

 If Aaron is not a trial lawyer, then he made an even larger mistake.

 Regardless, Judge C.J. Vaughey is a moron. 

 Blogging, even blogging that is critical of someone is not a criminal act.  Though if Vaughey had his way it would be.  That is what Brett Kimberlin and some others want.  They want to make conservative blogging illegal.  They want to silence conservatives.

 Aaron left the courthouse yesterday in handcuffs.  It appears that two days prior to the hearing, Kimberlin went and obtained a warrant for failure to comply with the terms of the interim Peace Order. 

 In many jurisdictions, warrants have to be approved by a prosecutor before they are issued.  In Montgomery County, Maryland that does not appear to be the case.

 The good news is Aaron is getting an attorney to represent him on these charges and hopefully it is a very experienced criminal defense lawyer.

 This fight is not over.  Aaron should be able to appeal Judge Vaughey’s decision on the Peace Order.  He will have his day in court on the criminal charges.

 Meanwhile he does need help, as do the other bloggers who have been attacked by Brett Kimberlin.  You can help them by donating to the legal defense fund set up to help Aaron and others. 

 This is a fight we cannot back down from.  If we do we are forever silenced by those who despise freedom.  We cannot allow people like Brett Kimberlin to extinguish the lamp of liberty.  We must fight.

NAPOLITANO: Can the Secret Service tell you to shut up? – Washington Times

NAPOLITANO: Can the Secret Service tell you to shut up? – Washington Times.

New law protecting officials from hearing criticism is unconstitutional

By Andrew P. NapolitanoThe Washington Times

The First Amendment to the Constitution prohibits the government from infringing upon the freedom of speech, the freedom of association and the freedom to petition the government for a redress of grievances. Speech is language and other forms of expression; and association and petition connote physical presence in reasonable proximity to those of like mind and to government officials, so as to make your opinions known to them.

The Declaration of Independence recognizes all three freedoms as stemming from our humanity. So, what happens if you can speak freely, but the government officials at whom your speech is aimed refuse to hear you? And what happens if your right to associate and to petition the government is confined to areas where those of like mind and the government are not present? This is coming to a street corner near you.

Certain rights, such as thought, privacy and travel, can be exercised on their own. You don’t need the government to cooperate with you; you just need to be left alone. Other rights, including those intended to influence the political process, require that the government not resist your exercise of them. Remember the old one-liner from Philosophy 101: If a tree falls in a forest and no one is there, does it make any noise? Here’s the contemporary version of that: If you can criticize the government, but it refuses to hear you, does your exercise of the freedom of speech have any value?

When the framers of the Constitution wrote the First Amendment, they lived in a society in which anyone could walk up to George Washington, John Adams or Thomas Jefferson on a public street and say directly to them whatever one wished. They never dreamed of a regal force of armed agents keeping public officials away from the public, as we have today. And they never imagined that it could be a felony for anyone to congregate in public within earshot or eyesight of certain government officials. Yet, today in America, it is.

Last week, President Obama signed into law the Federal Restricted Buildings and Grounds Improvement Act of 2011. This law permits Secret Service agents to designate any place they wish as a place where free speech, association and petition of the government are prohibited. It permits the Secret Service to make these determinations based on the content of speech.

Thus, federal agents whose work is to protect public officials and their friends may prohibit the speech and the gatherings of folks who disagree with those officials or permit the speech and the gatherings of those who would praise them, even though the First Amendment condemns content-based speech discrimination by the government. The new law also provides that anyone who gathers in a “restricted” area may be prosecuted. Because the statute does not require the government to prove intent, a person accidentally in a restricted area can be charged and prosecuted, as well.

Permitting people to express publicly their opinions to the president only at a time and in a place and manner such that he cannot hear them violates the First Amendment, which guarantees the right to useful speech – unheard political speech is politically useless. The same may be said of the rights to associate and to petition. If peaceful public assembly and public expression of political demands on the government can be restricted to places where government officials cannot be confronted, then those rights, too, have been neutered.

Political speech is in the highest category of protected speech. This is not about drowning out the president in the Oval Office. This is about letting him know what we think of his work when he leaves the White House. This is speech intended to influence the political process.

This abominable legislation enjoyed overwhelming support from both political parties in Congress because the establishment loves power, fears dissent and hates inconvenience, and it doesn’t give a damn about the Constitution. It passed the Senate by unanimous consent, and just three members of the House voted against it. The president signed it in secret. It is more typical of contemporary China than America. It is more George III than George Washington.

The whole purpose of the First Amendment is to assure open, wide, robust, uninhibited political debate – debate that can be seen and heard by those it seeks to challenge and influence, whether it is convenient for them or not. Anything short of that turns the First Amendment into a mirage.

Andrew P. Napolitano, a former judge of the Superior Court of New Jersey, is the senior judicial analyst on Fox News Channel. He is author of “It Is Dangerous to Be Right When the Government Is Wrong: The Case for Personal Freedom” (Thomas Nelson, 2011).

Women Speak Out: Obamacare Mandate Tramples on Religious Liberty

Women Speak Out: Obamacare Mandate Tramples on Religious Liberty.

Sarah Torre

Anyone who hasn’t heard the women’s voices speaking out against the Obamacare anti-conscience mandate over the past few weeks hasn’t been listening very well. Yesterday, to make sure they’re heard, women from diverse backgrounds gathered at Heritage to join their voices with countless others in dispelling the myths about mandate and denouncing the Administration’s most recent assault on liberty.

On Monday, The Heritage Foundation and the National Review Institute hosted “Women Speak Out: Obamacare Tramples Religious Liberty.” Representative Ann Marie Buerkle (R–NY) joined policy experts and faith leaders to discuss how religious liberty has become an early casualty in Obamacare’s collision course with freedom.

“This is not an issue of birth control or of contraception, or abortion, or sterilization,” Buerkle stated. “This is an issue of First Amendment rights.”

The anti-conscience mandate will force employers to provide coverage and pay for abortion-inducing drugs, such as Plan B and the “week-after” pill ella, in addition to contraception and sterilization. The mandate’s offensively narrow religious exemption fails to protect many religious employers such as schools, hospitals, and social service groups, some of whom hold deep religious and moral objections to providing for such services.

“There are no adequate conscience protections in this mandate for mercy in society given by the church,” explained Maggie Karner, director of Lutheran Church Missouri-Synod’s Life and Health Ministries. She continued:

For religious people, mercy is not confined to our houses of worship. It is not about caring for ourselves. It is about caring for others, those outside the walls of the sanctuary and in the most needful areas of our society.… But we can only do so if we are given the freedom to work within the framework of our beliefs. The anti-conscience mandate does not allow that. It does not allow for the free exercise of our First Amendment rights.

Backed into a corner, where the only routes of escape from the coercive mandate are violating deeply held beliefs or paying steep fines, some non-exempted religious employers will face the tragic third possibility of closure.

“For the very first time my conscience will cost me a federal fine. Whose ends does that serve?” asked Kate O’Beirne, president of the National Review Institute. “Not the employees who currently have health insurance they’re presumably happy with.… Fewer sick people cared for, fewer children educated, fewer hungry fed—that’s the effect of millions of dollars in federal fines.”

The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty is representing four religious organizations in lawsuits against the Obama Administration.

“We have a Constitution that protects the religious freedom of these organizations,” Lori Windham, senior counsel for the Becket Fund, stated. “It protects the religious freedom of the women and the men in these organizations, and they’re just asking that they be able to continue enjoying that religious freedom. This mandate hurts religious organizations. It hurts the people they serve. It’s unconstitutional.”

As Pia de Solenni, ethicist and owner of Diotima Consulting, explained: “This goes much broader than most religious groups because it’s about freedom per se. It’s about whether or not individuals have the rights to make decisions for themselves.… Are we as human beings so incompetent that we cannot make decisions for ourselves about our own health care covering the needs that we want?”

Hadley Heath, senior policy analyst at the Independent Women’s Forum—a group that has no religious stake in the debate but sees in the erosion of our first freedom an implicit attack on all our liberties—explained:

The new health law simply expands government’s role too far. This will be destructive for our constitutional design for government, for individual choice in the marketplace, and for the marketplace of ideas. In other words, at its core, Obamacare is anti-Constitution, anti-choice, and anti-competition.

It should surprise no one that a law that limits competition, restricts personal choice, and surrenders power over health care decisions to government bureaucrats would be used to run roughshod over religious liberty. As Buerkle explained:

The very essence of the health care law—the very essence of it—is that the government will tell you what your health care is going to be. So it is absolutely a logical sequence that we now have the government stepping in and saying, “Okay, we’re going to pick your conscience issues.”… This rule is nothing more than a continuation of what we’ve seen. It is just the government way overstepping its bounds.… You have the rights. You shouldn’t be going to them for permission.… We need to get government back to its proper role.

Obamacare tramples on the right to the free exercise of religion, specifically, and individual freedom, generally, and should be repealed. Until that happens, these and many other women will be in the same place they’ve been since the beginning of the anti-conscience mandate debate: standing up for religious liberty and fighting for individual freedom.

For more on this issue, watch our video: Religious Liberty: Obamacare’s First Casualty.

The Real Issue With The President’s Contraception Kerfuffle – Tea Party Nation

The Real Issue With The President’s Contraception Kerfuffle – Tea Party Nation.

Posted by John Wiseman

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution,
nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to
the States respectively, or to the people.

The Real Issue With The President's Contraception Kerfuffle - Tea Party Nation

The above sentence is the Tenth Amendment to our Constitution. Besides being another piece of the Bill of Rights completely ignored by the ACLU, Liberals in general will like to pretend that its meaning can not be divined. That somehow, this one simple sentence is so mysterious in meaning, that it must simply be ignored. So, as a public service, I’ll give it a try. What I see when I read that is a statement that the Federal Government, be it represented by the Executive, Legislative, or Judicial branch, does not have the authority to grant itself powers not expressly mentioned in the Constitution. What the founding fathers feared most, was a central government growing in size and scope beyond the control of the governed. This Amendment which is one of the 10 which the individual states demanded be put into place before ratifying this new law for our new nation, is for that purpose alone. It was a statement to the behemoth of today, if we did not specifically write that power or authority into the document in the first place, you do not have it. You can only do what we have specifically gave permission for you to do.

What perplexes me is how anyone can speak of Barack Obama as being some kind of Constitutional Scholar. He is all over Youtube grousing about how the Constitution really missed the boat by not granting the Federal Government authority to do more to enforce social and economic justice. In order to make that leap, one has to skip over this particular amendment. so that we are all clear about what the Bill of Rights represents, and the importance of all 10 of these Amendments, the Constitution would never have been ratified without any one of them. For you liberals, that includes the Second and the Tenth.

Recently, President Obama announced that a provision of the Obamacare Law granted him authority to force health care providers, regardless of their religious affiliation or not, to provide for contraceptive and/or pregnancy termination services. A very warranted public outcry ensued. President Obama has for his entire legislative and Political Executive life been waging an undeclared war against any religion other than Islam. Before people start screaming that Barack Obama is not a secret Muslim or what ever other cries of indignation anyone may wish to throw my way, the record of Barack Obama is crystal clear. Islam is exempt from this sour little man’s wrath, while Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Judaism are not. We heard everyone discussing the clear violation of the First Amendment which was taking place, and sure enough, the President magnanimously decided that the hospitals run by the single largest provider of Health Care in America, Catholic Charities, would not have to pay for abortions and contraceptives after all. They must still provide them of course, but Barack Obama has found a way to accommodate the accountants by issuing an edict. As of now, insurance companies will have to pay for everything. So, here we are two days later, and I am happy to say that not many people have been fooled by this clear attempt to deflect from the truth. There is another point however, that even we conservatives have missed.

I must say something here as an aside. My conservatism does not stem from religious convictions. That is to say, I am not a social conservative. I am a free marketeer. My argument here is not about the, “free choice versus right to life,” debate per say. While I believe that the First Amendment is extremely important to the health of out society, I can see that the argument of religious morals often finds its way beyond this boundary. That is to say, I can see the difference between a woman choosing to terminate her pregnancy of her own volition, and forcing other taxpayers to pay for it. I can also see a clear distinction between a woman’s decision to terminate her pregnancy of her own volition, and forcing an unwilling physician to perform the procedure. In those instances, free choice is removed from one group entirely.

What has gone unnoticed in this entire debate is the fact that the Obamacare law spits on the Tenth Amendment. Put another way, has anyone else in America noticed how the President has just declared that it is his decision to make which services physicians would perform whether or not they wished to do so, and who is going to pay for it? I guess this is what happens when we pass a law without reading it first, but then again, I refuse to believe that Barack Obama did not have any idea that this monstrosity would grant him dictatorial powers to edict that doctors would perform according to his wishes and that the costs would be covered by whomever he so chooses. This is about far more than abortions, this is about the Executive Branch being constrained by the consent of the governed. If he can say an act must be performed, than he will also have the authority prohibit actions as well. Where does anybody realistically see this stopping? Even if you believe the current President to be the benevolent Messianic figure the non Fox Media has assured us he is, what about the President who will be in office 20 years from now? Does that President deserve the unbridled dictatorial powers, sight unseen? Remember that George W. Bush, someone half of you hated before Barack Obama won the job was also a President of the United States.

One word to the Social Conservatives. I appreciate hearing your voice, and agree with you far more than I disagree. While this issue will never be at the top of my importance list, and I will never agree with teaching intelligent design as science in a school where my children attend, there is far more to this entire thing than what is being discussed, and it is a real shame that the bigger picture is not a part of the debate. This President has made it his mission to grab as much power for the Executive Branch as is possible. He has trashed our Constitution in the process, while eschewing the very limited actual duties of a President, as proscribed by the Constitution. As an example, defending our citizens against all enemies both foreign and domestic. (Just ask the good people of Arizona who have been warned by our President to stay clear of their own desert lest they find themselves victim to the drug cartels who have invaded there.) While we were all arguing over whether or not people should be getting abortions or wearing condoms, he has very slyly gotten us all to accept his ultimate authority on demanding who pay for those abortions which care providers will now be forced to perform.