A disturbing report on the continuing aftermath of the BLM protests. theguardian.com/us-news/2020/o…
It's disturbing in part because it's not obvious that existing First Amendment doctrine provides any protection to protestors who are prosecuted for resisting arrest or brandishing a weapon like a liquor bottle but who are really prosecuted because of their speech.
As in other contexts, prosecutorial discretion ends up taking a big bite out of our constitutional rights. Judges play a role too! The article reports that in one case a judge agreed to lower a protestor's bond only if he agreed to refrain from further public protest.
it is time to rethink the First Amendment rules of protesting.

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More from @glakier

19 Jan
A quick thread for those worried about the impact of the Great Deplatforming on freedom of speech in the US: the platforms are not the only private companies that control who gets to speak in the mass public sphere. Radio and television companies do too! 1/12
Today SCOTUS will hear args in a case raising the Q : what kinds of evidence must the FCC have before it can lift caps on radio and TV ownership meant to guard against the domination of the mass public by any one viewpt or actor. 2/ scotusblog.com/case-files/cas…
These ownership caps were payback for the great corporate giveaway of the 1934, when the fed gov gave YOUR public property (the airwaves) almost entirely to for-profit companies, who continue to control YOUR property for free. 3/12
Read 13 tweets
13 Jan
It is interesting to me, apropos my earlier thread,
that one of the things those arguing for impeachment keep emphasizing is Trump’s lies.
Rep Newhouse, for example, to explain why he favors impeachment stated that the mob that invaded the Capitol was “inflamed by the language and misinformation of the President of the United States.”

The House Judiciary Comm has similarly accused Trump (correctly, obv.) of attempting to convince "his supporters, falsely, that they actually voted him back into power.” judiciary.house.gov/uploadedfiles/…
Read 8 tweets
10 Jan
A thread on Trump’s deplatforming and why I think the debate about it reveals the bankruptcy of contemporary free speech law. 1/17
Many of those who approve of the platforms’ decisions to ban Trump argue that current First A law grants speakers no right of access to privately owned property. and conclude that there is no free speech issue here. 2/17
They’re right on the doctrine: the Roberts Court has gone to extraordinary lengths to make clear that private actors enjoy total freedom under the First A to censor whatever speech they like. 3/17
Read 17 tweets

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