Category Archives: 1st Amendment
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
On Monday, Judge Leonie Brinckema, a Federal Appeals Judge in Virginia, issued an injunction against President Trumps Immigration Executive Orders on the basis that they are in fact, a Muslim Ban.
The Government has argued that the doctrine of Plenary Powers over National Security and Immigration should make the Orders unreviewable. But can such power be given under the Constitution? If the answer is no, then can statements made outside of the Orders by the President and his advisers be taken into account as to the intent of the orders?
If the answer is yes, are we prepared to accept a country where he sitting President has unchecked power which neither the Courts nor Congress can counterbalance?
It’s a Valentines day Tuesday episode of Constitution Thursday!
The Espionage act of 1917
On this day, Yom Hashoah, we recall the millions who died as a result of a legal process and we ask the question, could such things ever happen here in the United States?
The Espionage Act of 1917 was used to silence opposition to the Governments policy of War with Germany. In 1799 the Alien and Sedition Act was used to silence critics of the Government in the United States. But by the 1960’s attitudes about dissent to Government war efforts had changed significantly.
But what would it take to change them back and restore a scenario where “dissent is [not] patriotism?”
The (Very) Liberal History of the Indiana RFRA
In Indiana, controversy reigns over the State’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, with accusations flying that it will allow rampant discrimination against gay people. So why did Indiana feel the need to pass such a law in the first place? What was it that compelled a Democrat Party controlled Congress to pass the first Religious Freedom Restoration Act by a unanimous vote in the House of Representatives and a 97-3 vote in the Senate before being signed by President Bill Clinton? And if the nations liberals saw good in the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, what is it about Indiana’s version that has them so worked up?
In this episode we take a look at the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and how we got to the point where Indiana (and a lot of other States) felt compelled to pass such a law. The story begins in the migrant worker farmed fields of Texas in the 1930’s, with a child born to migrant farm workers who will go on to fight for Civil rights and to freely express his religious beliefs…