Fuzzy Thought

Joe Doakes from Como Park emails:

Suppose a guy walks down the interstate highway during rush hour, blocking traffic and stalling thousands of motorists for hours, and when arrested says: “I did it as an act of non-verbal communication to protest police violence because Black Lives Matter.”

We know the First Amendment protects citizens’ right to speak freely, including the right to protest government policy.  We know the courts have defined “speech” to include non-verbal communication such as nude dancing and therefore, presumably, walking.

 Should the walker’s First Amendment defense require that he be found Not Guilty of Obstructing Traffic?  Liberals would say “Yes” and many Moderates might agree.

 Change the facts a bit: instead of walking down the freeway, he rapes a co-ed.  Or burns a store.  Or shoots a cop.  If the same defense is raised, should the same result obtain?  For many Liberals, probably so.  But for Moderates, here’s a crucial question:  if the First Amendment should not excuse rape, arson or murder but it should excuse obstructing traffic, why?

 Joe Doakes

Because racism!

9 thoughts on “Fuzzy Thought

  1. When I was a kid an important element of Civil Disobedience was going to jail.

    Would we still remember it if MLK had written a letter from his lawyer’s office in Birmingham.

  2. I don’t think your angle of attack is quite right, Joe.

    Leftist scumbags know blocking traffic is illegal, and they know if they’re charged, they will pay a fine. Oh, there are certainly dimwits like dog and teh peevee that are willing to spew some inane justification; the left is choked with desperately ignorant useful idiots, but that’s not what the men and Wymen behind the curtain are after. Their tactic is not to gaslight the law, it is to elect enough of their ilk to apply the law according to their needs.

    You will go to jail if you block the road to protest against encroachments against your 2nd amendment rights, because Smart Latina® prosecutors believe guns are bad as long as the public has access to them. BLM works to disarm you just as surely, and more effectively than 100 Michael Paymars. They walk.

  3. The title of this post should read “Fuzzy Thought and Absurd Polemic.”

    Mr Doakes is apparently suffering from a heat-addled mind when he writes that “many liberals” would “probably” find a rapist or an arsonist or a murderer “not guilty” if they used a First Amendment defense. Or perhaps the mounting hysteria of the Republican Convention has caused Mr Doakes to take leave of any rational thought that might have remained.

    There are many legitimate differences in opinions that divide liberals from conservatives. But if you honestly think this is a true distinction between liberals and conservatives then you’re as blind and grotesquely uninformed as Mr Doakes was when he wrote this post.

  4. Great job on the scornful sneer, got the tone just right; but I notice you didn’t actually answer the question, Common Sense.

  5. JD, please tell us you did not really expect an answer from a libturd. That is just not common sense.

  6. I apparently gave you too much credit when i thought you could infer my answer from what I’d written. No, Freedom of Speech is not a valid defense for rape, arson or murder. Moreover, and to my knowledge, there has never been a case of jury nullification in these types of cases after a Freedom of Speech defense was advanced. Can you provide any examples of such?

    As to your second question, the underlying premise of your question is in error. Obstruction of traffic is a pretty misdemeanor (https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=169.34) and defendants do not receive jury trials for pretty misdemeanors under Minnesota’s Rules of Criminal Procedure (https://www.revisor.leg.state.mn.us/court_rules/rule.php?type=cr&id=23). I would expect the hearing officer or court would find the defendant guilty but may more likely take the Freedom of Speech argument into consideration in terms of fine, etc levied.

  7. Rick, one might ask what logical reason you would give to grant a 1st Amendment defense to blocking a vital traffic artery, but not a similar defense for other crimes.

    On the right, and in libertarian circles, we have a proverb that “your right to swing your arm ends where my nose begins” that speaks well to this. In terms of the 1st Amendment, you’ve got the right to speak, you’ve got the right to print things, but that right ends when you start infringing on any of my other rights, including the right not to listen to you in my own space.

    Plus, as Dr. King would tell us, the point of being arrested in a protest is to draw attention to an injustice. What does it say, then, when you don’t get arrested, and the only injustice at hand is the one you just inflicted on others?

  8. My dear Mr Bubba,

    Please show me where I’ve written that free speech is a defense to obstructing traffic.

    Mr Doakes constructed this straw man argument about moderate and liberal beliefs in his absurd hypothetical. I’m still waiting for him to provided an example when Freedom of Speech was used as a defense or, for that matter, when jury nullification occurred following such a defense.

    Oh, by the way, your “proverb” is also used within moderate, liberal and progressive circles. Another example of Conservative/Libertarian appropriation of mainstream cultural norms 😉

    Rick Mons

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