Lake Erie Conservative

thoughtful discussion(s) about issue(s)

Posts Tagged ‘free speech’

… the Editors of Charlie Hebdo are Right [#free speech]…

Posted by paulfromwloh on Saturday,October 29th,2016

.. either we have free speech , or we do not …

.. [h/t — HotAir.com]..

.. [link] to the blog post …

The film critic said it’s important for journalists and ordinary citizens not to self-censor and, staking an absolutist position, said: “We don’t negotiate. There’s either freedom of speech or there is not.”

But Biard said the magazine, which printed nearly 8 million copies of its first post-massacre edition – up from its usual 60,000 – cannot continue its bold exercise of free expression alone, and warned Western journalists they risk emboldening jihadis by avoiding sensitive topics, such as depicting Muhammad, and marginalizing those who do.

Many publications, he said, “turned their back” on Charlie Hebdo by questioning the appropriateness of pillorying religious fanatics.

“The press suffer a lack of courage in this matter,” he said. “We don’t want to be a symbol any longer. … We can’t be the only ones to stand up for these values.”

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… Now a Court is Showing some Sense [#Hands on Originals]…

Posted by paulfromwloh on Monday,May 16th,2016

.. Hands on Originals is a simple business . They generally sell t – shirts ..

.. however , that is also where it got them into trouble …

.. the local Gay & Lesbian Services Organization [GLSO] wanted to have some t – shirts made up to support one of their events . One of the owners of HOO objected . As a result , the GLSO filed a complaint in the county Human Rights Commission …

.. when that body ruled against them . HOO sued in court . Given the current legal climate , they did not expect the best of news . However , the judge in the case ruled in their favour …

.. [h/t — VolokhConspiracy.com]..
.. [link] to the blog post // legal opinion ..

.. I am going to include a lengthy clip from the blog post by Professor Eugene Volokh , of UCLA . He is the one who the blog is named for and who founded it . Professor Volokh explains things far better than I can , but it is a dandy explanation of the judge ‘ s reasoning . However , it is a bit lengthy , though …

The Commission decided in favor of Baker, but on Monday, in Hands on Originals, Inc. v. Lexington-Fayette Urban County Human Rights Commission, a Kentucky trial court judge disagreed.

1. First, the judge concluded that Hands on Originals was discriminating based on the pro-gay-pride message that GLSO wanted printed, not based on the sexual orientation of GLSO’s representatives or members. This suggests that the judge thought the ordinance just didn’t apply on its own terms, quite apart from any restrictions imposed by the First Amendment or by Kentucky’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act. But as I read the opinion, the judge didn’t make any such specific finding about the inapplicability of the ordinance.

2. The judge did conclude, though, that applying the ordinance to Hands on Originals’ actions violated the First Amendment:

[“T]he right of freedom of thought protected by the First Amendment against state action includes both the right to speak freely and the right to refrain from speaking at all.[”] … The [Commission] attempted to distinguish [the compelled speech precedents] from the case at bar with the explanation that “In this case there was no government mandate that the Respondent (HOO) speak.”… [But i]n fact, HOO and its owners, because they refused to print the GLSO t-shirts that offended their sincerely held religious beliefs, have been punished for the exercise of their Constitutional rights to refrain from being forced to speak….

The Commission in its oral argument says it is not trying to infringe on the Constitutional Rights of HOO and its owners but is seeking only to have HOO “…treat everyone the same.” Yet, HOO has demonstrated in this record that it has done just that. It has treated homosexual and heterosexual groups the same. In 2010, 2011 and 2012, HOO declined to print at least thirteen (13) orders for message based reasons. Those print orders that were refused by HOO included shirts promoting a strip club, pens promoting a sexually explicit video, and shirts containing a violence related message.

There is further evidence in the Commission record that it is standard practice within the promotional printing industry to decline to print materials containing messages that the owners do not want to support. Nonetheless, the Commission punished HOO for declining to print messages advocating sexual activity to which HOO and its owners strongly oppose on sincerely held religious grounds.

HOO did not decline to print the t-shirts in question or work with GLSO representatives because of the sexual orientation of the representatives that communicated with HOO. It is undisputed that neither [of the] HOO representatives … knew or inquired about the sexual orientation of either GLSO representatives …. Rather, … the conversation between GLSO representative … and HOO [co-]owner [Blaine] Adamson was about GLSO’s mission and what the organization generally promoted…. HOO’s declination to print the shirts was based upon the message of GLSO and the Pride Festival and not on the sexual orientation of its representatives or members….

If Massachusetts could not compel [St. Patrick’s Day] parade organizers to include a group advocating a [gay rights] message that the parade organizers did not support, [Hurley v. Irish-American Gay, Lesbian & Bisexual Group of Boston (1995),] how can the LFUCG Human Rights Commission interpret the “Fairness Ordinance” to compel HOO and its owners to print a t-shirt conveying a message that HOO and its owners do not support and in fact find blasphemous? The Court holds that the Commission cannot take this action consistent with the U.S. Constitution….

This Court has undertaken review of this case based upon … the doctrine of “strict scrutiny.” … This Court does not fault the Commission in its interest in insuring citizens have equal access to services but that is not what this case is all about. There is no evidence in this record that HOO or its owners refused to print the t-shirts in question based upon the sexual orientation of GLSO or its members or representatives that contacted HOO. Rather, it is clear beyond dispute that HOO and its owners declined to print the t-shirts in question because of the MESSAGE advocating sexual activity outside of a marriage between one man and one woman. The well established Constitutional rights of HOO and its owners on this issue is well settled and requires action by this Court….

3. The court also held that the commission’s actions violated the Kentucky Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which provides,

Government shall not substantially burden a person’s freedom of religion. The right to act or refuse to act in a manner motivated by a sincerely held religious belief may not be substantially burdened unless the government proves by clear and convincing evidence that it has a compelling governmental interest in infringing the specific act or refusal to act and has used the least restrictive means to further that interest. A “burden” shall include indirect burdens such as withholding benefits, assessing penalties, or an exclusion of programs or access to facilities.

The court first concluded, following the reasoning of the U.S. Supreme Court in Hobby Lobby (where the Court was interpreting a very similar federal statutory scheme) that the Kentucky RFRA applied to corporations such as Hands On Originals, and, “[b]ecause the Commission’s Order requires HOO and its owners to print shirts that convey messages contrary to their faith, that Order inflicts a substantial burden on their free exercise of religion.” And the court then concluded that the commission’s actions can’t be justified under the “strict scrutiny” (“compelling governmental interest” / “least restrictive means”) exception that the Kentucky RFRA provides:

[T]he Commission has not even attempted, much less shown by “clear and convincing evidence” or otherwise, that it has any compelling government interest in the consequences imposed upon HOO and its owners in this case. As previously mentioned, it is the understanding of this Court based on the record that GLSO was able to obtain printing of the t-shirts in question at a substantially reduced price or perhaps even had them printed for free. This was the offer extended by HOO owner Adamson in the initial phone conversation with a GLSO representative to refer GLSO to another printing company to do the work for the same price quoted by HOO. The Court holds that the Commission has not proven by clear and convincing evidence or otherwise that it has a compelling governmental interest to enforce in this case….

The analysis seems quite right to me. I expect there will be an appeal, so we’ll see what the Kentucky appellate courts have to say about this.

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… Give ‘ Em Heck , Ayann Hirsi Ali [#yale speech]…

Posted by paulfromwloh on Monday,February 29th,2016

.. I pray that her Yale speech went well . I will have to rely on the news reports to be sure …

.. knowing her , it will be uneventful . Knowing the radicals that wanted to silence her , there were likely disruptions during the speech …

.. [h/t — TruthRevolt.org]..
.. [link] to the news report …

.. academia is supposed to be and stand for the free exchange of ideas and for freedom of expression . Even when that expression is not all that popular at all …

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… Scott Walker was part of Campaign Fundraising …

Posted by paulfromwloh on Tuesday,June 24th,2014

.. but it was hardly criminal .

.. [h/t — Newsmax]..
.. [link] to the news piece ..

.. doing it on the federal level might be illegal . Albeit some co – ordination is permitted . Wisconsin laws evidently are quite different ..

.. the ” John Doe ” prosecutors are quite sore that they had their supposed investigation shut down . It was a clear abuse of 1st Amendment rights , and the federal appeals court called them on it . The surprise is the Club for Growth …

.. I am a little bit surprised that the Club for Growth wanted the documents that the prosecutors accumulated disclosed . The documents would appear to be put in the worst light , making the Club and Gov Walker look bad . Their conduct might even look illegal . However , it was not , and it never was , even before the Citizens United case . The disclosure was a smart move . It mitigates any attempt at spin by anyone during this year ‘ s campaign , or in the future . Now , Gov Walker and the club for growth are in the clear , and have nothing to worry about …

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… Bravo , Ben [Shapiro] ! …

Posted by paulfromwloh on Tuesday,April 29th,2014

.. Ben Shapiro appeared on the Kelly File with Megyn Kelly on Friday night [04/25/2014] , and reamed Brandeis University and its president a couple of brand new ones .

.. [h/t — TruthRevolt]..
.. [link] to the interview footage ..

.. Brandeis needed to be called out on the carpet . They collapsed to the dark forces of immoral tertitude . These are the kind of folks who will never understand what kind of message Dr. Ayaan Hirsi Ali is trying to bring forth …

.. more than that , those folks cannot stand criticism . They will act to suppress and eliminate the criticism and speech of those who act to oppose them …

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… John Gizzi is Right …

Posted by paulfromwloh on Tuesday,April 22nd,2014

… and , it is not the amount of money that is important in campaign donations …

.. it is the right to make that donation that is the most important . That is what makes the campaign contribution turn into a First Amendment – protected object of speech ..

.. [h/t — Newsmax]..
.. [link] to the news report …

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… Islamophobic My Ass …

Posted by paulfromwloh on Thursday,April 3rd,2014

.. this film and this clip (both of which were released) are a true groundbreaking exposé of the horrendous problem in the Arab World … and even here in  the Americas (both here in the United States , and in Canada) … the gawd awful horror of honor killings …

… these women have bravely fought the good fight to bring this story to the screen … and now , C.A.I.R. (the Council on American – Islamic Relations) is trying to shut it down …

.. why ? .. because they call it Islamophobic … As I put it in my title , the video and movie are anything but Islamophobic …

.. how can people do such a thing ? Basically , the ” honor ” system is nothing but the enslavement of women …

.. [h/t — HonorDiaries]..

.. [link] to their website ..

.. [h/t — YouTube]

.. [link] to an Extended Clip …

.. [link] to the movie itself

.. you should see the website , and the film trailer . When and if possible , buy the film from the ITunes store , or attend a screening in your local community . These folks deserve your support , and C.A.I.R. should be ashamed of itself for trying to silence screenings on college campuses … In the old days , that might have worked , but now ?? … in the internet age , that cannot work , it will not work , it must not work  ….

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