March 29, 2011

"County supervisor fined $205 for Capitol protest sign held by young sons."

News article about the videos we were talking about the other day.

87 comments:

sane_voter said...

Make the kids pay for it. "What do you mean Mom!!! I don't have $205!

MadisonMan said...

I'll be interested to see how this plays out.

I wonder why she was fined, but not him. Maybe they chose lots?

AST said...

I can tell she's done a great job of instilling respect for law and one's elders in her kids.

Ann Althouse said...

@AST I'm sure her position is that she's instilling respect for law, including the law that is constitutional law (superior to statutes and other rules).

samanthasmom said...

Thoreau believed that someone who is civilly disobedient should be willing to go to jail.

Comrade X said...

Just because they're not old enough to vote doesn't mean they're not old enough to form an educated opinion

don't bite the hand that feeds you

Cedarford said...

Sargent and her husband discussed the matter with the children and left it up to them. "I believe the constitution trumps the administrative code," Justin Sargent is heard saying in the video. "Whichever way they go I will stand behind them."

The children stood firm and so did their parents.


If the Children, the Children!!!! Stand firm against the teacher or cop, what choice to the parents have but to stand firm with the Children! Because the Children, the Children!! are WISE beyond their years. And we must listen to their wisdom! (And hear what political indoctrination they got from their parents and see the signs their parents made for them..)

Moose said...

Kids will do the darndest things to please their parents. I doubt they really had any perspective on what they were doing - just that they were acting in a way that made mom & dad happy. That's why those sorts of acts are rather tasteless.

Mary said...

Oh what a foolish woman .... I guarantee she is a parent who argues that her kids know more than their soccer coaches, phy ed teachers, scout leaders etc. And when he gets in trouble it will be his friends fault .... One of those parents .... Pathetic.

Jay Retread said...

I am sure the Althouse Hillbillies would have no problem if these were 11 year olds standing up for 2nd Amendment "rights". First Amendment, not so much.


Best comment at Madison.com
"The Sargents are to be commended for their act of teaching their kids the responsibility of peaceful and respectful civil disobedience. And officer Brooks did a great job, completely straightforward and respectful, he should also be commended."

Moose said...

@Jay - you are a retread...

SteveR said...

Its really not appropriate to put your kids in that situation however romantic the sentiment. A better lesson would be to have them help the less fortunate rather than protest the privileged getting a little less of a great deal.

Ut said...

"I'm sure her position is that she's instilling respect for law, including the law that is constitutional law (superior to statutes and other rules)."

Not if she pays the fine.

If she truly believes in free speech, she'll appeal her conviction all the way to the Supreme Court if necessary.

If she pays the fine, she's then admitting she's just a lowlife criminal.

So, let's see what she eventually does.

I predict she's nothing more than a low-life criminal and will pay the fine and that will be the lesson her kids take away.

Cedarford said...

Ann Althouse said...
@AST I'm sure her position is that she's instilling respect for law, including the law that is constitutional law (superior to statutes and other rules).



Althouse maintaining cruel neutrality again, not making a stand on whether or not this is an acceptable Constitutional exercise.

So a couple hypotheticals tossed her way:

1. The Constitution sets no age limit on the right to keep and bear arms. Would it be a valid protest to have The Children! such as analogues to these 13,11 year olds from a hardcore gun rights group be given their .22s and shotguns and demonstrate armed outside the Capital?

2. If the Equal Protection clause of the 14th Amendment is applied to gays as justifying their freedom to use orifices in the way they want, with whom they want and where they want - nothing says that it can't be applied to the "Wisdom of The Children" to make their own sexual choices at age 11, 13.
Would a priest driving his altar boys to the Capital with signs the priest helped make - like "Me and Father Flanagan are Forever" "What he does to me is fun and hot and I never want it to stop" - be a valid protest and advocacy? Of what the boys and Father Flanagan see as superior rights in the Constitution for the "special love" between gay men and gay boys?

Phil 3:14 said...

These kids have learned a key lesson about our modern democracy:

You can often get someone else to pay for the consequences of your actions

Who knows, this experience could lead them into a career in personal injury law.

At a minimum they have a better understanding of the principles underpinning the debate about teacher benefits.

Maguro said...

Does a law that says you can have your little protest signs on the first floor but not the second floor really merit "civil disobedience"? What they're teaching those kids is that they need to get their way all the time or IT'S JUST NOT FAIR!!!!!!!!!11!!!!!!!!

garage mahal said...

Law Schmall. Courts Schmorts!

The law is whatever the fuck Walker or Fitzgerald says it is. Sheesh!

MayBee said...

So it's a constitutional right to hang a banner in a public building?

That's interesting.

LawGirl said...

Under First Amendment jurisprudence, Congress (and, by extension under the 14th Am., lower legislative bodies) may enact "reasonable time, place, and manner" restrictions on speech. So, the question becomes whether restricting this type of speech (or is it all speech?) to a certain area of the Capitol can be considered a "reasonable" restriction.

Particularly close scrutiny will be paid to any attempts to restrict political speech. It warrants some of the highest protections under the 1st A.

I'm not sure how the rule relegating this type of speech to a certain level of the Capitol reads exactly, so I'm providing some of the "rule" that applies, but do not have all of the facts to which to apply it. Who enacted this rule? Does anyone know where to find the text of it?

edutcher said...

She thought she could hide behind them. Coward!

Or is she a Cloward coward?

PS He's no Retread. Just a Retard.

lasckbounce said...

Kids/parents ought to act on their beliefs/principles/consciences and violate the law if that is their want. The executive branch of government is obligated to enforce the law. Let the wacko Wisc court system sort out. Wonder what the ultimate disposition
will be..??? lol

MadisonMan said...

LawGirl, I think the more relevant case law in this example springs from the Wisconsin Constitution.

LawGirl said...

No, I mean the ordinance or rule at issue that relegates this speech to to one level of the Capitol.

LawGirl said...

Okay - I found this summary of the court order directing DOA to open the Capitol, with restrictions (in pertinent part):

Rules as of Friday morning from the Wisconsin Department of Administration indicate these procedures are now in place:

. . .
- Members of the public participating in a rally or protest must remain in the ground floor rotunda area.


Hmmmm . . . I think this may be unconstitutionally vague, if this is the actual language of the rule (like I said, I found a summary). For instance, what is a "rally" or "protest"? Is that defined anywhere?

I definitely do not have enough information to produce an intelligent analysis of this. The parents may well be right re: 1st A (and Wis. Con.)

That said, it's pretty cheeky of them to make it the kids' decision. As if the kids, standing there with their parents who have obviously shared their opinions on the issue, can really make an independent decision at that point.

garage mahal said...

Who enacted this rule? Does anyone know where to find the text of it?

Judge John Albert, March 3rd.

He ordered the DOA to "open the state Capitol to all members of the public and rescind the access policies put in place (Monday) and replace them with the access policies in effect on Jan. 28, 2011." Link


To which Walker ignored, of course. I dont have the text, but it doesn't seem to matter anyway what a judge rules with these people. Such is life in Fitzwalkerstan

Milwaukee said...

Previously, somebody posted the law in regards to contributing to the delinquency of a minor. Yep. That police officer probably had to go smack somebody else around, being so darn polite is so hard. He was too kind. For quality control purposes, he let that go on too long. I used to live in Chris Larson's district. Remember he is the leftist Senator who primaried a sitting Democratic Senator because the previous guy wasn't liberal enough. On both sides of the spectrum moderates are being purged. Since Senator Larson's character is suspect, that his Chief of Staff would have a suspect character isn't too much of a stretch. Why wasn't the dad charged as well?

Ut said...

"Under First Amendment jurisprudence, Congress (and, by extension under the 14th Am., lower legislative bodies) may enact "reasonable time, place, and manner" restrictions on speech."

Which, is, of course, complete fucking bullshit.

The First Amendment says Congress may make NO law abridging the freedom of speech. The amendment does not say that Congerss may make SOME laws abridging free speech so long as those laws are "reasonable restrictions."

It specifically says that NO laws can be enacted limiting in scope the freedom of speech.

The Amendment says Congress may make NO LAWS. NONE! How fucking hard is that to understand? None. Zero. Fuck off.

The Supreme Court justices are fucking assholes who can't read and we should ignore their clearly unconstitutional rulings.

traditionalguy said...

The point that the Professor wants to make is that the Capitol police had no authority, except the legislature's authority, and the legislature had no authority except the State Constitution's authority, and the State Constitution had no authority except the grant of Statehood to this piece of the frontiere Northwest Territory, and that grant had no authority except the validity of the treaty with the Indian Tribal Nations, and that had no authority unless the US Senate properly ratified it, and that ratification had no authority unless the US Constitution was properly enacted after the Treaty severing ties with England was duly authorized by a King whose coronation was authorized by the Pope in Rome and/or The Archbishop of Canterbury who is the vicker of Jesus Christ who by common acknowledgement owns it all. A hearing to look into these matters will take a while...and that my friends is rebellion by legal process.

MayBee said...

This banner was hanging off a balcony, taped to the rail of a public building. You all really think it is unconstitutional to make a rule against that?

LawGirl said...

Ut is, apparently, a very angry fellow with such a lack of imagination that vulgarity was the best adjective he could think of to refute my post.

First, I'm right about the standard applied to 1st A cases. Second, while we can disagree as to what "reasonable" restrictions are, there is no way we could operate without ANY restrictions. Examples abound, but here are just a few:

1. Prohibitions on yelling "fire" in a crowded . . . um . . do we have theaters anymore? You get the point.

2. Disorderly conduct/breaching the peace - you can't yell whatever political view you might have at the top of your lungs at 2:00 a.m. in most cities.

3. Laws allowing speech inside public buildings only during business hours.

There are many more, but these demonstrate that what you say about NO NO NO restrictions is clearly not consistent with life in a civil society, nor is it how the courts have applied the 1st A for the past two centuries or so.

LawGirl said...

This banner was hanging off a balcony, taped to the rail of a public building. You all really think it is unconstitutional to make a rule against that?


Probably not - at least the taping part. As to the banner, it may depend on the size and what it is made of as to whether it poses any security risks that outweigh the absolute need to talk RIGHT THERE at exactly THAT TIME . . .

The problem is . . . the law itself may have some problems on its face, depending upon how it is worded. If it unreasonably restricts speech - especially political speech - it could be unconstitutional. Or, if it is worded as the summary I found words it, it could be found unconstitionally vague.

AJ Lynch said...

The cop enforced the law and the violators paid a price. That is the way it is supposed to work.

AJ Lynch said...

Btw- it's a form of child abuse to indocrinate your kids with your own political beliefs and to drag kids to a protest.

Smilin' Jack said...

The Supreme Court justices are fucking assholes who can't read and we should ignore their clearly unconstitutional rulings.

On the contrary, it takes a fine mind and years of legal training to master the art of sophistry well enough to make the Constitution mean whatever you want it to mean. Show some respect.

Comrade X said...

public sector union employees confiscating basketball goals from children:

Lem said...

I don't think that's a good lesson for a child from a dense metropolitan city to learn.. that might work fine in Madison.. but that scene would not have played out that way in NYC.

I almost got fined the other day walking a pair of dogs w/o a leash.

Henry said...

My kid's signs say things like "Keep Out" and "No Girls Allowed". Every once in a while he gets bored and takes them down himself.

Renee said...

In the comment section of the newspaper article, someone made an analogy to 'the ballon boy'.

I see nothing wrong bringing children to rallies and protest, I have done in the past. I also brought my children to political functions, and never thought I was utilizing them. I was simply exposing them to civics.

I wouldn't ever allow my children to participate in civil disobedience, i.e. behavior that would get require a citation and an appearance in court. If adults want to do that, that's their choice. Children on the other hand are just following along in trust.

The parents could of taught a lesson, by following the administrative code and THEN discussing with their children the pros and cons of 'holding signs' rule and it is considered wrong to restrict speech. The same effect without the headache of a court appearance.

Henry said...

@Renee -- Well said. I agree on all points.

Bruce Hayden said...

My problem here is that for most of us, violating a law in this sort of situation is essentially civil disobedience, and the person doing such should be willing to pay the price or suffer the consequences thereof.

In this case though, the mother gave her kids an option without apparent consequences for them. They could take a stand here, and if they were right, then great. But if they were wrong, they wouldn't have to pay the price, since their mother would.

Now, if the officer had cited the kids instead, or if the mother had told them that if lost, the fine would come out of their allowances, then I would think that it was a good object lesson, one way or another.

I am not willing to opine as to whether the speech should be protected by the 1st Amdt. or not. Is limiting the protests to the 1st floor a reasonable place restriction? Does it matter that the capital is a historic building? Does it matter whether allowing protesting on the upper floor would impact the business of the legislature? This is political speech, so the reach of the 1st Amdt. would presumably be at its strongest. But, it is still limited.

As to the poster who questioned whether the 1st Amdt. could be limited to place and time, the answer is that no right under the Constitution is absolute (except, maybe for an abortion). The regulations are reviewed under a "strict scrutiny" standard, which does not mean "absolute scrutiny" or "strict liability". While this may not make sense based on the wording of the Amendment(s), we have 200+ years of Supreme Court jurisprudence telling us that there are some limitations to all regulation by the government of speech.

Nevertheless, the more I think of this, the less I think that this regulation is going to survive Strict Scrutiny review.

We shall see.

Carol_Herman said...

The ticket will be "written off" by higher up's ... Just like Jared Loughner's mom got to hide the fact she had a paranoid schizophrenic son. Of the real lunatic variety.

Bet'cha the ticket is never paid. Quietly erased. And, the issuing officer finds his career on the line. Down the line. Because that's how they "play."

Meanwhile, they would have been better off just dropping water balloons. (That was a prank JFK, Jr., used to love to do from high up Fifth Avenue apartments.

At least the water balloons wouldn't injure anyone. Can you imagine if this sign went down and got someone on the head? Or in the eye?

"Pranksters."

The unfit mom, however, won't have to actually "pay" the fine. Someone will do to it ... what they do to those with access ... who speed. Or drive drunk. Or drugged.

The laws are only for "you folk."

Carol_Herman said...

You know, kids grow up real fast! And, sometimes they qualify for college.

Just like you said, Ann, about feeling sorry for Jim Shankman, and I agree! To be young and to louse up your name as some sort of "radical." What employer will want to hire these kids in five years?

You mean, they won't need a job because mom has connections? Jared Loughner's mom had real nice connections. Look what happens when you think the system does your bidding.

Oh, yeah. Kids who listen to radicals? I can almost guarantee ya, you're watching dope freaks in the making.

E.M. Davis said...

This banner was hanging off a balcony, taped to the rail of a public building. You all really think it is unconstitutional to make a rule against that?

Were the union occupiers fined when they did the very same thing?

MayBee said...


Were the union occupiers fined when they did the very same thing?


I don't know. I believe the 1st floor only rule came about because of the union actions during the protest. I thought there were already rules against posting signs, but I could be wrong about that. I do not remember hearing any union protesters were fined for their behavior during the big protests.

Maybe Althouse and Meade know more.

Milwaukee said...

Will the parents court dates show up on the Wisconsin Court Access website?
The linked newspaper article names them as Melissa Sargent and her husband Justin. Do they share the same last name?

txrxqa said...

.

The sign the kids held over the marble railing:


http://oi54.tinypic.com/15dv2pj.jpg



.

Cheryl said...

My head is about to explode. The parents "discussed the matter with the children and left it up to them."

She should be fined another $205 for general stupid parenting. No wonder the teachers want more money, putting up with kids who get treated like that.

Prosecutorial Indiscretion said...

"Under First Amendment jurisprudence, Congress (and, by extension under the 14th Am., lower legislative bodies) may enact "reasonable time, place, and manner" restrictions on speech."

Which, is, of course, complete fucking bullshit.

The First Amendment says Congress may make NO law abridging the freedom of speech. The amendment does not say that Congerss may make SOME laws abridging free speech so long as those laws are "reasonable restrictions."

It specifically says that NO laws can be enacted limiting in scope the freedom of speech.

The Amendment says Congress may make NO LAWS. NONE! How fucking hard is that to understand? None. Zero. Fuck off.


If you were to consistently apply such a vapid ultra-textualist analysis, wouldn't you have to agree that the First Amendment doesn't apply here because we're not talking about a law enacted by the U.S. Congress?

David53 said...

@SteveR

Best comment on the thread,

A better lesson would be to have them help the less fortunate rather than protest the privileged getting a little less of a great deal.

SGT Ted said...

Holy crap cederford posted something that makes sense and doesn't blame the Jooooos.

I think I see a unicorn outside....

Martin L. Shoemaker said...

You who are on the road
Must have a code that you can live by
And so become yourself
Because the past is just a good bye.

Teach your children well,
Their father's hell did slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams
The one they picked, the one you'll know by.

Don't you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

And you, of tender years,
Can't know the fears that your elders grew by,
And so please help them with your youth,
They seek the truth before they can die.

Counter Melody To Above Verse:
Can you hear and do you care and
Cant you see we must be free to
Teach your children what you believe in.
Make a world that we can live in.

Teach your parents well,
Their children's hell will slowly go by,
And feed them on your dreams
The one they picked, the one you'll know by.

Don't you ever ask them why, if they told you, you would cry,
So just look at them and sigh and know they love you.

David said...

Jay Retread said...
I am sure the Althouse Hillbillies would have no problem if these were 11 year olds standing up for 2nd Amendment "rights". First Amendment, not so much.


Straw man alert!

In fact I think it's up to the parents to decide what to do. Personally, I might take an 11 year old to a protest if there were clearly no danger involved, but I would not delegate a choice like this to a 11 year old.

Reason? I believe it reflects a grandiosity on the part of the parents and promotes grandiosity in the kids.

My favorite example is a fancy private school in Chicago where a friend's 8th grader was involved in a mock war crimes trial of Harry Truman for having decided to drop the A bomb on Japan. The notion that a bunch of papered 8th grade kids had the experience, information and judgment to make such a decision was ludicrous.

The kids convicted Harry Truman of a war crime. Everyone was really pleased that they had learned some big lesson.

CachorroQuente said...

Anybody who doesn't understand that some restrictions may be imposed on first amendment rights is either a complete fucking moron or a relative of Mick.

There I go again, repeating myself.

I don't know what sort of a ticket was issued to the woman in question: it might have been a citation for having committed a misdemeanor or it may have been a civil administration violation ticket like a parking ticket. If the latter, I doubt that it will get very far in the justice system. There is a good legal reason why the Supreme Court doesn't spend all its time adjudicating the constitutionality of parking tickets.

MayBee said...

Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe the sign wasn't taped up.

mariner said...

Smilin' Jack,
On the contrary, it takes a fine mind and years of legal training to master the art of sophistry well enough to make the Constitution mean whatever you want it to mean. Show some respect.

Well played, sir!

Revenant said...

The First Amendment says Congress may make NO law abridging the freedom of speech. The amendment does not say that Congerss may make SOME laws abridging free speech so long as those laws are "reasonable restrictions."

Congress is not forbidden from abridging speech. It is forbidden from abridging freedom of speech. Quite simply, it is forbidden from restricting our RIGHTS, not our SPEECH.

Any speech which you have no right to engage in -- e.g., fraud, slander, libel, espionage, or blackmail -- can be restricted or banned outright without violating the Constitution in the slightest.

Whether or not freedom of speech includes the right to hang signs in a government building is questionable. I would say "no". You could stand in the building and say what's on the sign, or hand out handbills containing the same words that are on the sign, but when you hang a sign you are claiming that public property for your own. You've no right to do that.

Alex said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alex said...

My favorite example is a fancy private school in Chicago where a friend's 8th grader was involved in a mock war crimes trial of Harry Truman for having decided to drop the A bomb on Japan. The notion that a bunch of papered 8th grade kids had the experience, information and judgment to make such a decision was ludicrous.

The kids convicted Harry Truman of a war crime. Everyone was really pleased that they had learned some big lesson.


So it's not really about government schooling as much as red vs blue areas. I mean that level of left-wing indoctrination is the kind of hard-core stuff I'd expect out of a public school. I be there are public schools in red states that are to the right of Atilla the Hun by comparison.

LawGirl said...

Rev. said: Congress is not forbidden from abridging speech. It is forbidden from abridging freedom of speech. Quite simply, it is forbidden from restricting our RIGHTS, not our SPEECH.

Good point. I let that slide right by me. Thanks for catching it.

Alex said...

MA charter schools mock trial guidelines

I have developed three discrete historical trials, one for American History class and one for World History, each representing specific eras or important issues in history. In 1993, my 8th grade class created the 1865 trial of Jefferson Davis for treason. Since then, other 8th grade students expanded and refined a trial from Interact, a company that has created (and offers teacher-created) simulations, historical mock trials, and other role-playing activities (see www.interact-simulations.com). In this mock trial, President Harry Truman is “tried” for dropping the two atomic bombs on Japan. Other students created a trial, set in 1775, of John Adams, Sam Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and John Dickinson for treason against the British Crown. Tenth graders in World History class developed a trial of Napoleon Bonaparte for Crimes Against Humanity.

Yay, aren't you just feeling the LOVE of learning?

MadisonMan said...

Maybe the sign wasn't taped up.

I'm pretty sure the youngsters were just holding it.

roesch-voltaire said...

Mock trials are one way to understand the important moral and ethical issues raised by one very real trial: The Nuremberg Trial. They are also a way to debate and understand the forces of history that lead to wonton carnage.

cubanbob said...

Lost in all of this is the fact that the supervisor's solidarity is with the public service employees and not with the taxpayers. The rest is a tempest in a tea cup.

DADvocate said...

I am sure the Althouse Hillbillies would have no problem if these were 11 year olds standing up for 2nd Amendment "rights".

Damn straight!!! Been shooting since before I was 11.

So, the question becomes whether restricting this type of speech (or is it all speech?) to a certain area of the Capitol can be considered a "reasonable" restriction.

I can guarantee you that there are plenty of state capitols where you wouldn't get the sign inside, let alone to an upper floor. Tennessee is one.

The First Amendment says Congress may make NO law abridging the freedom of speech. The amendment does not say that Congress may make SOME laws abridging free speech so long as those laws are "reasonable restrictions."

That's right, by God!!! Go to D.C. right now, march out on the Senate floor and demand your free speech right to speak there at that moment!! Anything less would be abridging your free speech rights!!! The Constitution says nothing about the government placing "reasonable time, place, and manner" restrictions.

The U.S. Capitol is a public building, every inch of it. Exercise your right to speak on the Senate floor!!! Do it today!!!

My head is about to explode. The parents "discussed the matter with the children and left it up to them."

Yeah. It's so much easier not taking parental authority and exercising it responsibly. Just let them "discover" things for themselves and encounter "natural" consequences. Of course, you pay the fines and your children grow up to be maladjusted. But, what the hell?

Congress is not forbidden from abridging speech. It is forbidden from abridging freedom of speech. Quite simply, it is forbidden from restricting our RIGHTS, not our SPEECH.

How do you abridge speech without abridging freedom of speech? Our RIGHT is "freedom of speech." If you restrict our SPEECH, you're restricting our RIGHTS. You're making an odd circular argument like the ones I used to hear from mental patients.

It should be abundantly obvious, however, that the signers of the Constitution never intended you could say whatever you want, where ever you want, whenever you want.

shiloh said...

apologies to Graham Nash ...

E.M. Davis said...

wonton carnage.

But that's the most dericious kind!

bagoh20 said...

I would love it if the kids when given the power to make the decision chose to take the car keys and leave.

The mother says: "Just because they're not old enough to vote doesn't mean they're not old enough to form an educated opinion."

Althouse, These kids are after your job and apparently qualified.

PaulV said...

Law girl, do you think that those nimrods would argue that the 2nd Amendment parallel language means that government can make no law restricting firearms? They are either hypocrits or dumb.

PaulV said...

I have heard the government decidec not to try Davis because they thought case was weak

PETER V. BELLA said...

Only 205.00?

ironrailsironweights said...

Said Einstein, "I've found an equation
That science will deem Rabelaisian.
Let Z be virginity,
Approaching infinity,
And Y be a constant, persuasion.

Let Y over Z be inverted
And the square root of Y be inserted
X times into Z
And the result, Q.E.D.
Is a baby," Einstein asserted.

Peter

Smilin' Jack said...

Rev. said: Congress is not forbidden from abridging speech. It is forbidden from abridging freedom of speech. Quite simply, it is forbidden from restricting our RIGHTS, not our SPEECH.

Good point. I let that slide right by me. Thanks for catching it.


Part of the lawyer's trade: finding distinctions where none exist.

Chuck said...

IF these were my grandkids; the offspring of our daughter and her husband. Yes I have a daughter and she has a husband and they do have one kid.

The daughter would be written out of the will for marrying Mr. Stupid and the kids would be written out as hopeless.

Hello nearest animal rescue shelter/cancer center/local church; you get it all.

Barbara said...

The parents will pay, all right. What happens about the fine I cannot know, but their kids will grow up to be the sort of self-important jerks no one can tolerate (except possibly their mommy and daddy, who will be stuck with what they've created).

The Grand Inquisitor said...

"Part of the lawyer's trade: finding distinctions where none exist."

The point is that even without a constitution, we have our rights. The constitution doesn't create any rights, but rather they were always our rights. And this is true because the government doesn't have the power to do anything not enumerated in the constitution.

When people try to interpret the constitution the other way... the Obama way... they wind up thinking the government has the power to do anything that isn't specifically forbidden.

For example, the constitution assigns the power to fight a pirate to the congress, and command of that effort to the president. So the president can only use the military in ways the congress wants him to. He executes their resolutions, rather than being a one man king who can start wars on the people's behalf.

But because it's not specifically forbidden for the president to also have the power the congress has, Obama has seized this power. Even in violation of Obama's own explanation of war powers when Bush was president.

The only way to have a constitutional republic that continues to work is to not allow the government to create new powers this way. And that's why the bill of rights protects our rights rather than the specific things like guns or speech that it named.

For this reason, many founders did not want to list our rights, and instead rely on the limited powers in the articles of the constitution.

Jeremy said...

Scott Walker Seeking Federal Stimulus Funds For Rail Line Improvements, After Campaigning On Rejecting Them

The Grand Inquisitor said...

Scott Walker urges the federal government not to waste the money of Wisconsin taxpayers on rail, but when they insist on doing so, he goes ahead and makes sure his state's taxpayers get their share instead of that money being burned in Cali.

/speculation

PaulV said...

Jeremy, you do not understand the diferrence between wasting money on expensive not so fast rail and spending money to maintain and improve existing rail service. Thatb would require a brain.

Revenant said...

Part of the lawyer's trade: finding distinctions where none exist.

If you think the first amendment's reference "freedom of speech" refers to a right to say anything you want, anywhere you want, to anyone you want, then I'm afraid you simply aren't ready to participate in an intelligent and adult conversation on this topic.

Now begone, and cease wasting my valuable time. :)

AllenS said...

Someone needs to go to Melissa Sargent and her husband, Justin's house at 2am, and voice their opinion. Loudly. Maybe then, they'll catch a clue as to freedom of speech and it's limitations.

DADvocate said...

Jeremy, you do not understand the diferrence between wasting money on expensive not so fast rail and spending money to maintain and improve existing rail service.

He understands. Like every other liberal, he's happy to perpetrate a lie when it suits his purpose.

Roger J. said...

What is it about wisconsin that produces so many fucked up people?

Deer season over? Ice to thin for safe fishing?

Might be the water

Francisco D said...

Garbage Mahal,

Your attempt to paint Walker as a fascist is about what I expect from a high school sophmore - before they had any inkling of what the term "projection" meant.

Václav Patrik Šulik said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0ZZHGO5sXw

Smilin' Jack said...

If you think the first amendment's reference "freedom of speech" refers to a right to say anything you want, anywhere you want, to anyone you want, then I'm afraid you simply aren't ready to participate in an intelligent and adult conversation on this topic.

Well, of course the First Amendment doesn't say that. Because it would be really inconvenient if it did. Just like the Second Amendment doesn't refer to a right to bear arms.

The Grand Inquisitor said...

The first amendment prohibits government from infringing on your natural right to speech.

It doesn't protect any speech whatsover, such as screaming fire in a theater or libeling someone or threatening to kill someone, because you don't have a natural right to do that. You have a natural right to express yourself, to make political comments of any kind, etc.

I realize this can seem complex, but once you get how the constitution works, by limiting government, it makes a lot of sense.

Similarly, you have a natural right to protect yourself and your home and family. You don't have a natural right to enrich plutonium in your basement.

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