Der Trump’s not even in office yet and his cronies at the state level are already destroying people’s first amendment rights.
Remember how those gun-nuts screamed that the second amendment would protect all of the other amendments? Yeah, they were wrong, but is anyone surprised they’re full of sh*t?
Late Wednesday, Republicans in the Michigan House voted on a bill that would make it easier to shut down “mass picketing” demonstrations, and in the process, impose huge fines on protesters who block the entrances to businesses, private residence, or roadways. This news comes hot on the heels of the announcement that Donald Trump’s Presidential Inauguration Committee blocked protesters in Washington, D.C.
There’s already a law on the books that prohibits certain forms of mass picketing, but according to the sponsor — Representative Gary Glenn, R-Midland — a “spate of recent incidents” have made it appear that, in his words, “the current penalties are not sufficient to deter already-illegal activity.”
Funny how they never apply that logic to firearms, isn’t it?
By “spate of recent incidents,” one is left to infer that this targets BLM, minimum wage protesters, union members on strike who block the entrance to prevent scabs, Trump protesters, and other left-wing groups, because you sure as hell know this won’t be used against those anti-choice morons who picket and protest in front of otherwise private businesses that provide abortions.
Under this new legislation, if a judge has already blocked your attempt to go on strike or otherwise express your first amendment, you could net you a fine of $1,000 a day. Unions and other groups are looking at up to $10,000.
This proposal also allows employers to bring legal action against the people protesting them in a local circuit court. And just in case you thought that this wasn’t broken enough, it lowers the evidence threshold required for a court to order picketers to stop demonstrations. Finally, it also allows employers to obtain injunctive relief if the court in question determines that picketing violated a misdemeanor law that prohibits, “the pursuit of any lawful work or employment by mass picketing.”
Under this law, the Civil Rights Movement would never have been possible. Which is actually the point.
The bill faced staunch Democrat resistance but passed anyway, with a 57-50 vote. It goes to the Senate, where it’s probably going to pass, and it’ll land on Governor Snyder’s desk, who will probably sign it into law. At which point, since you lose your ability to assemble if a judge decides you shouldn’t be able to, riots become a viable alternative I would support. If Michiganders need help, I’ll bring the guillotine and Jacobin membership cards, and we can party like it’s 1789.
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Democrats and people with common sense pointed out that this bill was terrible and unconstitutional, but since when has any of that ever stopped the Republican party? Hell, those adjectives — terrible and unconstitutional — describe the party at every level.
If this law works in Michigan, expect to see this law elsewhere — we may even be looking at a federal version of this law, that will almost certainly be upheld by Trump’s supreme court nominees.
One of the things you hear is that the states protect us from the federal government. That’s all well and good, but who the hell is going to protect us from the state governments?