Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Update on HR 1955 - "Thought Crime" Bill

The bill I wrote about a few days ago that passed in the House of Representatives has now been introduced in the Senate as S. 1959. Please see Ronni Bennett's site Time Goes By for more information.

The Baltimore Sun had an Op-Ed piece opposing the bill on November 19:

"Not since the "Patriot Act" of 2001 has any bill so threatened our constitutionally guaranteed rights.

The historian Henry Steele Commager, denouncing President John Adams' suppression of free speech in the 1790s, argued that the Bill of Rights was not written to protect government from dissenters but to provide a legal means for citizens to oppose a government they didn't trust. Thomas Jefferson's Declaration of Independence not only proclaimed the right to dissent but declared it a people's duty, under certain conditions, to alter or abolish their government."
(emphasis added).

The article goes on to explain all of the dangers of this bill:

"Ms. Harman, a California Democrat (the H.R. bill's sponsor) thinks it likely that the United States will face a native brand of terrorism in the immediate future and offers a plan to deal with ideologically based violence.

But her plan is a greater danger to us than the threats she fears. Her bill tramples constitutional rights by creating a commission with sweeping investigative power and a mandate to propose laws prohibiting whatever the commission labels 'homegrown terrorism.'

The proposed commission is a menace through its power to hold hearings, take testimony and administer oaths, an authority granted to even individual members of the commission - little Joe McCarthys - who will tour the country to hold their own private hearings. An aura of authority will automatically accompany this congressionally authorized mandate to expose native terrorism.

Ms. Harman's proposal includes an absurd attack on the Internet, criticizing it for providing Americans with "access to broad and constant streams of terrorist-related propaganda," and legalizes an insidious infiltration of targeted organizations. The misnamed "Center of Excellence," which would function after the commission is disbanded in 18 months, gives the semblance of intellectual research to what is otherwise the suppression of dissent."

Please do follow the link and read the whole article. In addition, the Daily Kos has also picked up the story. However, other than the piece in the Baltimore Sun, no other MSM has publicized it that I can find.

Today's Haiku:

Save the Bill of Rights
Let's fight for freedom of speech
Write your senators.


Fran said...

Great post.
Great haiku.

This bill is absurd and dangerous. Thanks for keeping it going here in the blogworld.

PunditMom said...

So scary. Thanks for letting us know about this.

Mary Ellen said...

The problem we have is that our Democrats are too damned lazy and stupid to read the bills they are voting on.

I don't know if we'll ever get anything that resembles our Constitution again by the time this administration is through with us.

TomCat said...

I have emailed my Senators on this one. It must not pass. Thanks, Maui.

Mauigirl said...

Thanks for everyone's comments. I hope more and more people become aware of this and take action!

I agree, Mary Ellen, the Democrats are either lazy or afraid they'll be labeled "soft on terrorism" if they stand up for the Constitution. I'm so sick of their lily-livered attitude toward these kinds of issues. I'm really discouraged.