Wednesday, June 23, 2010
Supreme Court: Free Speech Depends on What You Say
(Article contains 25 links). On June 23, 2010, the United States Supreme Court issued a ruling that "permits Congress to make human rights advocacy and peacemaking a crime," according to David Cole, of the Center for Constitutional Rights. See a New American article below that explores the ramifications of the High Court's ruling..
I have complained for years about censorship and an illegal cyberwar to prevent my freedom of press and free speech rights. Pharaohs in government, including the judiciary, who are prison owners and investors hate my human rights advocacy to decriminalize mental illness.
My Internet usage is curtailed, I am stalked in person, and no one in authority will enforce my right to ask WHAT HAPPENED TO LARRY NEAL http://wrongfuldeathoflarryneal.com/ and my right to advocate for 1.25 million mentally ill Americans who were wrongly imprisoned rather than treated timely to avoid crimes. My right to advocate for justice reform and to warn others about The (Johnnie) Cochran Firm fraud has been attacked online for years. News about Larry's murder and the fact that The Johnnie Cochran Firm was ruled nonexistent when my family sued the firm for fraud in Georgia is censored in the media. I had to publish news about Larry's death and his family's victimization by the unscrupulous law firm myself. Many of the independent news services online carry news that is under-reported or blocked in mainstream news reports. Therefore, there is an effort to control the Internet. It is called an info war.
I use online services to reach hundreds of thousands of people with the news and to advocate to decriminalize mental illness and honor prisoners' human rights in keeping with Hebrews 13:3. The Internet is used by many other people to publish under-reported or censored news and to advocate for causes they want to support. However, another development regarding the First Amendment occurred on June 27. Congress is deciding whether to give the president's office the power to shut down the Internet under Senate bills 773 and 778.
The federal bill to decriminalize mental illness - H.R.619 - is also censored. Restoring Medicaid under Title XIX of the Social Security Act as the federal bill provides would hurt prison profits, and many in the media are also prison investors. To decriminalize mental illness and increase psychiatric treatment options would directly, negatively impact the personal investment portfolios of many decision makers. Please visit Assistance to the Incarcerated Mentally Ill at http://www.Care2.com/c2c/group/AIMI - It is an online advocacy group I founded to help end discrimination against mentally challenged Americans, the only class of people who are imprisoned for public displays of a disability. Members' efforts to communicate online suffer frequent cyber attacks.
IT'S YOUR TURN NOW! Apparently, you are no longer allowed to advocate freely for human and civil rights in the USA, or you may be sent to a FEMA center. Remember that federal bill H.R.645 is pending in Congress - the bill to erect six concentration camps in America for Americans. So if authorities secretly arrest and kill your family member and refuse to apologize, release records, or explain his death, like they did my mentally and physically disabled brother, you must pretend not to notice the empty chair at your dinner table.
Right now, the restrictions the High Court placed on free speech seem to regard criticizing war. However, prisoner activists and others human and civil rights activists also experience difficulty. In November 2009, students at Northwestern University were targeted by the district attorney's office because they gathered evidence to help wrongly convicted inmates prove their innocence. Eventually, there may be serious consequences for advocating for any human rights effort. Eventually, intedpendent news organizations, the people at Amnesty International, the Innocence Project, Human Rights Watch, Death Penalty Information Center, and many other human and civil rights organizations might be joining millions in the unemployment lines eventually, since human rights advocacy may become grounds for terrorism charges in the land of the free, home of 2.3 million prisoners.
Prosecutors seek Northwestern journalism students’ grades
11/8/09 (AP) - A Northwestern University professor and journalism students who spent three years investigating the case of a man convicted in the 1978 killing of a security guard believe they have evidence that shows prosecutors put the wrong man behind bars. But in the quest to prove his innocence, they may have to defend themselves, too.
Cook County prosecutors have outraged the university and the journalism community by issuing subpoenas to professor David Protess seeking his students’ grades, his syllabus and their private e-mails. It’s a first for Protess and his investigative reporting students, who have helped free 11 innocent men from prison, including death row, since 1996. Their work also is credited with prompting then-Gov. George Ryan to empty the state’s death row in 2003, re-igniting a national debate on the death penalty.
Paying cyberstalkers to interfere with freedom of press online to prevent human rights advocacy (which interference I record) is expensive and taxing, so the attack is now against the First Amendment, itself.
Many Christians and people in other religions see it as their duty to speak against wars and all human rights abuses. Jesus Christ was himself a conscientious objector, a/k/a the Prince of Peace. He requires that His church be His body in the earth. For instance, Every Church a Peace Church is an anti-war movement by Christians of different denominations. Visit http://www.ecapc.org/ - Restricting free speech also abridges the free practice of religion. Many people attend anti-war protests, exercising their right to peaceful assembly. It would appear that such anti-war protests could be outlawed. Thus, in one stroke, the Supreme Court has attacked free speech, free press, religious freedom, and the right to peaceful assembly. This seems unfitting for guardians of the Constitution. In keeping with the First Amendment, it was not Congress that passed a law to restrict free speech, but the High Court. Trust lawyers to find a loophole. I wonder what part of the Constitution will go next.
I hold that the only people "terrorized" by the truth are miscreants who condone human rights violations and plan to proliferate same.
Supreme Court Tramples Free Speech
Written by Alex Newman - Wednesday, 23 June 2010 - The New American
In its zeal to support “anti-terror” rules without regard to the Constitution, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 6-to-3 this week to uphold criminal penalties for peaceful political speech, prompting strong criticism from civil-liberties groups and humanitarian organizations.
By leaving intact a legal prohibition on providing “material support” to organizations the government disapproves of — which under the court’s ruling includes advice on how to file human-rights complaints and negotiate peace settlements — critics say the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution has been shredded.
“We are deeply disappointed. The Supreme Court has ruled that human rights advocates, providing training and assistance in the nonviolent resolution of disputes, can be prosecuted as terrorists,” said Center for Constitutional Rights attorney David Cole. “In the name of fighting terrorism, the Court has said that the First Amendment permits Congress to make human rights advocacy and peacemaking a crime. That is wrong.”
In a press release, the group expressed concern that the government could even prosecute organizations or individuals writing opinion pieces for newspapers or filing court briefs in support of an unapproved group.
The case, Holder v. Humanitarian Law Project, began over a decade ago when Congress passed a bill criminalizing any “material support” for “designated” terror organizations selected by the Secretary of State. Lower courts had found the statute vague and unconstitutional. But the Supreme Court disagreed.
The hearing basically revolved around a coalition of aid groups challenging the congressional authority to ban peaceful political speech. The groups wanted to continue teaching organizations on the State Department’s list of designated “foreign terrorist” groups, like the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, how to pursue their political goals through non-violent means, file claims with international bodies, settle disputes without force, and other similarly peaceful objectives.
Other plaintiffs wanted to provide humanitarian assistance in a part of Sri Lanka that had been devastated by civil war and a tsunami. But the area was ruled by the Tamil Tigers, which is also considered a terrorist group by the State Department.
And so, the Supreme Court said no. "Such support frees up other resources within the organization that may be put to violent ends," Chief Justice John Roberts wrote in the majority opinion. The Obama administration called the statute one of the most important tools in fighting terror.
More than 80 groups are on the government’s “terrorist” list, including political parties and movements of varying persuasions, some blatently fitting the terrorist description, others not so clearly so. And so, for now, any and all support for said groups — even speech — could be considered criminal and punished by years in jail, according to critics of the ruling.
“The Court’s decision confirms the extraordinary scope of the material support statute’s criminalization of speech. But it also notes that the scope of the prohibitions may not be clear in every application, and that remains the case for the many difficult questions raised at argument but dodged by today’s opinion, including whether publishing an op-ed or submitting an amicus brief in court arguing that a group does not belong on the list is a criminal act,” said CCR Senior Attorney Shayana Kadidal, who served as counsel for the Huminatarian Law Project in the case.
“The onus is now on Congress and the Obama administration to ensure that humanitarian groups may engage in human rights advocacy, training in non-violent conflict resolution, and humanitarian assistance in crisis zones without fearing criminal prosecution,” he added.
Some have speculated that even former president Jimmy Carter could now be prosecuted for his work, and he agreed that it was possible. “We are disappointed that the Supreme Court has upheld a law that inhibits the work of human rights and conflict resolution groups,” Carter said. “The ‘material support law’ – which is aimed at putting an end to terrorism – actually threatens our work and the work of many other peacemaking organizations that must interact directly with groups that have engaged in violence. The vague language of the law leaves us wondering if we will be prosecuted for our work to promote peace and freedom.”
The American Civil Liberties Union also criticized the decision in a press release. “Today's decision is disappointing and inconsistent with our First Amendment position,” said Melissa Goodman, staff attorney with the ACLU National Security Project. “The government should not be in the business of criminalizing speech meant to promote peace and human rights."
The New York Times also blasted the decision in an editorial, saying “the ideals of an earlier time were eroded and free speech lost” in the first case to test the limits of the First Amendment against “national security” since the attacks of September 11. Other papers also criticized the ruling.
In his dissent, which he read out loud in the court room, Justice Steven Breyer raised similar concerns. "Not even the 'serious and deadly problem' of international terrorism can require automatic forfeiture of First Amendment rights," he wrote.
“What is one to say about these arguments — arguments that would deny First Amendment protection to the peaceful teaching of international human rights law on the ground that a little knowledge about ‘the international legal system’ is too dangerous a thing; that an opponent’s subsequent willingness to negotiate might be faked, so let’s not teach him how to try?” Breyer added. Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg also rejected the government’s argument.
As Thomas Eddlem pointed out in an article for The New American, the court’s decision, reported on the front page of the Washington Post alongside an article about U.S. taxpayers financing the Taliban in Afghanistan, is ironic and hypocritical.
“The real irony of the front page of the Washington Post for June 22 is that while the United States military continues to provide financing for the same terrorist enemy [Taliban] that is killing American soldiers on an almost daily basis, the Supreme Court has ruled that private citizens cannot provide guidance for terrorist organizations (even organizations which are not threatening Americans) to turn from their paths and find non-violent ways to address their sometimes legitimate gripes in the political realm,” Eddlem wrote.
In another attack on the decision, writer Walt Thiessen at Nolan Chart commented on the Orwellian overtones of the ruling, which, he notes, “effectively creates a new class of people: Unpersons. These are people who have the temerity to disagree with U.S. government's designations of certain persons and groups as terrorists,” he noted. “The ruling effectively makes it a crime to attempt to make peace with such people. It eliminates, from a legal perspective, the basic human rights of anyone who disagrees with the U.S. government. In effect, such dissenters become Unpersons.”
Ralph Fertig, the president of the Humanitarian Law Project, said the group would continue its work advocating peace, “but we do so with GREAT FEAR.” After reading the court ruling, he concluded that “this is a very dark day in the history of human rights.”
The federal government has already made clear who it considers the biggest “domestic terror” threat: “right-wing extremists” who support gun rights, sovereignty, the Constitution, proper border enforcement and other “right-wing” causes. So while some may agree with the court right now, this ruling could set a dangerous precedent where groups accused by the government become “indefensible,” as people cower in fear of criminal sanctions even for offering support via speech.
When the Founding Fathers wrote the First Amendment — "Congress shall make no law ... abridging the freedom of speech" — what they undoubtedly meant was that Congress literally should make no laws abriding the freedom of speech. This ruling upholds a statute which is clearly in violation of the Supreme Law of the Land, so it is to be hoped that Congress will rectify the situation now that the Supreme Court has clearly failed to do so.
Self-defense is reasonable and necessary. But at risk of 15 years imprisonment for complaining, I do not agree that America should bomb other nations in the absence of preemptive force,* and neither should leaders of other countries be hanged for killing their own citizens while U.S. citizens are killed by police officers and their families denied judicial recourse. I do not know much about international affairs. I do know that Larry Neal, my brother, was a U.S. citizen, and the United States will not explain his secret arrest and murder nor release any records about his death. Neither will the Department of Justice hold anyone accountable to answer why the harmless, lifelong mental patient was arrested and how he died. My mother awakens with nightmares nearly every night about the different scenarios under which Larry may have been exterminated in Memphis Shelby County Jail in 2003, but the Department of Justice and Bureau of Prisons refuse to respond to our Freedom of Information Act requests. Furthermore, the lawyer fraud by The Cochran Firm we suffered in our quest for open disclosure and justice was ruled "immaterial" by the United States District Court, Northern District of Georgia in 2009. The judge's dismissal prevented the case from going before a jury, which is another constitutional right many Americans are denied. Sophisticated online censorship and in-person stalking my family endures because I write about how Larry and other mentally ill people are treated equal 21st century cross-burning on our lawn. Since the government decided that Larry Neal's lynching deserves no explanation because he was a Negro (2010 U.S. Census term), that needs to be made clear to all mnority citizens, including those in military service, starting with some of Larry's family members.
If Larry's murder under secret arrest seems appropriate to U.S. officials because he was a lifelong mental patient, then millions of families of all races need to be warned that mentally ill people are considered expendable and unworthy of basic human and civil rights. This is evidenced by the fact that 1.25 million mentally challenged Americans are behind bars and comprise 60% of the inmates in solitary confinement, when they should either be in hospitals or treated in their communities, depending on their ability to function and their offenses. If citizens are considered expendable because of their race and/or health status, then I seriously question our leaders' morality and judgment to such an extent that it seems highly inappropriate for them to make decisions about human rights offenses in foreign lands.
AMERICA SHOULD NOT SECRETLY ARREST AND KILL HANDICAPPED PEOPLE AND DEMAND SILENCE FROM THEIR SURVIVORS. NEITHER SHOULD AMERICA HAVE SPECIAL ARRANGEMENTS WITH A ROGUE LAW FIRM TO DEFRAUD ITS MINORITY CLIENTS AND PRETEND TO REPRESENT THEM WHILE ACTUALLY USING THE ATTORNEY/CLIENT PRIVILEGE TO COVERTLY GATHER INFORMATION ABOUT CITIZENS AND PREVENT THEIR JUSTIFIED LAWSUITS AFTER WRONGFUL DEATHS IN GOVERNMENT CUSTODY.
I'm not going to stop human rights advocacy because of this Supreme Court ruling. I was likely already targeted for FEMA camp internment since I do not plan to take any mystery vaccines or submit my body to be microchipped. In fact, I was told my name was on a "watch list" years ago when I started writing articles to decriminalize mental illness, stop wrongful convictions, eliminate the death penalty, and ask WHAT HAPPENED TO LARRY NEAL?_______
ELITE INTEGRATION, by Mary Neal (all rights reserved)
Elite white people and black people done got together against little people
And they imprisoning 'em and waterboarding 'em and executing 'em
OH, LAWD! OH, LAWD!
Elite white people and black people done got together against little people
They lay 'em off, make 'em bail out banks, laying railroad tracks to concentration camps**
OH, LAWD! OH, LAWD!
**Google for H.R. 645, the FEMA center bill proposed by Alcee Hastings in January 2009, a black congressman from Florida.
Below is a partial list of my advocacy articles, which I will continue to write, not merely to criticize, but to ask for improvement.
*Never Any Evidence Tying Iraq to 9/11, Says Former VP Cheney
Come with Me to Golgotha! by Mary Neal
PETITION: Stop Censorship and Terrorism Against Mary Neal www.thepetitionsite.com/2/Justice4MaryNeal
PRISON LABOR PROFITS vs. FREEDOM OF PRESS FOR MARY NEAL
After Kathryn Johnston's Murder
VIDEOS showing real-time cyber censorship to prevent human rights advocacy in America
Internet Censorship Protects CRIMINALS in Government
MY Flag, MY Country! by Mary Neal
New World Order, Anyone?
Congressional Apology for Slavery - Acceptance Pending
American Family Under Seige for Inquiring About Brother Who Died in Secret Government Custody http://www.nowpublic.com/world/amercan-family-under-siege-inquiring-about-brother-who-died-govt-custody
AM I A BAD PERSON?
A Plea for Free Speech, by Fredrick Douglass
See you at the camps, freedom lovers, if the Lord delays His Second Coming! Despite what the Supreme Court says, I agree with Jesus Christ about war:
If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. ~ Romans 12:18
A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly. ~ Proverbs 18:24
I hate to see more Americans losing the right to freedom of expression. I have been covertly censored for years, as my YouTube videos show, and it is horrible. Wake up, sheeple! Your koffie is burning on the stove. Follow me at Twitter, where I am KoffieTime - http://twitter.com/koffietime
http://NowPublic.com/duo - Visit Mary Neal's Google Profile - http://www.google.com/profiles/MaryLovesJustice - Get the RSS feed for my Care2 Sharebook at: http://www.care2.com/c2c/share/rss.html/513396753/0/ - Get the RSS feed for my Twitter KOFFIETIME at http://twitter.com/statuses/user_timeline/59790083.rss - Current, urgent justice issues from a laywoman's viewpoint at my primary blog http://FreeSpeakBlog.blogspot.com (the name is a joke, believe me) Recommended articles - http://topsy.com/site/freespeakblog.blogspot.com - Contact Info: MaryLovesJustice@gmail.com, P.O. Box 153, Redan, GA 30074-0153 - Tapped phone: 678-531-0262 (Our incoming and outgoing calls are blocked at will by parties who control our communications. They seek to stop my advocacy for accountability for Larry's death and for fairness and compassion for mentally ill people and other prisoners.)