Democrat Governor: Ann Coulter NOT Protected Under Constitution
First, Ann Coulter was slated to speak at Berkeley. Then UC Berkeley canceled the appearance because of what they called ‘safety concerns’. They reversed that decision and then rescheduled the date that Coulter would speak. Not so fast though… after being blasted by Coulter for abridging her First Amendment rights, Coulter let them have it yet again: “Not quite! Berkeley just imposed an all-new arbitrary & harassing condition on my exercise of a constitutional right.” The Post reported after the reversal, “However, a leader of the college Republican group that originally invited Coulter said the university was placing strict conditions on the event, and he said his group intended to reject the new terms.” I don’t blame them in the least… this is the censorship of free speech and conservatism as a whole.
Then it got even worse. Howard Dean, a former Democratic governor, decided to chime in. In a tweet on Thursday, Dean wrote, “Hate speech is not protected by the first amendment.” This is from someone who ran for the presidency, he’s a former governor and the former head of the DNC. Yet, he does not seem to grasp basic constitutional law. Go figure. The left considers anything said by the right as hate speech… they want to shut us up entirely and permanently. That is really what is going on with Ann Coulter here.
From The Daily Wire:
On Thursday, UC Berkeley reversed their decision to cancel Ann Coulter’s appearance at the university, rescheduling it from April 27 to May 2, according to The Washington Post.
UC Berkeley said it had advised Coulter’s representatives and the Berkeley College Republicans of the change, according to The Los Angeles Times, which reported Chancellor Nicholas Dirks’ stating, “We have an unwavering commitment to providing for the safety and well-being of speakers who come to campus, our students and other members of our campus and surrounding communities. While there may, at times, be tension between these paired commitments, we cannot compromise either.”
The university had canceled Coulter’s speech on Wednesday, citing safety concerns after right- and left-wing protesters clashed on Saturday; 21 people were arrested.
Coulter had slammed the university on Twitter in a series of tweets, arguing, “no school accepting public funds can ban free speech.”
The Post reported after the reversal, “However, a leader of the college Republican group that originally invited Coulter said the university was placing strict conditions on the event, and he said his group intended to reject the new terms.”
Dean was responding to New York Times reporter Steven Greenhouse and his objections to “free speech defenders” who support Ann Coulter’s right to speak at the University of California, Berkeley. The Supreme Court has ruled over and over that there is no explicit exemption of ‘hate speech’ under the First Amendment – provided the speech does not lead to violence. In fact, speech that you do not like is the very speech that needs protection. Eugene Volokh, a law professor at UCLA who writes the “The Volokh Conspiracy” blog, set things straight in a 1300-word column for the Washington Post Friday entitled, “No, Governor Dean, there is no hate speech exception to the First Amendment.”
From Volokh: “Hateful ideas (whatever exactly that might mean) are just as protected under the First Amendment as other ideas,” Volokh writes. “One is as free to condemn, for instance, Islam — or Muslims, or Jews, or blacks, or whites, or illegal immigrants, or native-born citizens — as one is to condemn capitalism or socialism or Democrats or Republicans.” Legally speaking, there is no such thing as ‘hate speech’. “U.S. law has just never had occasion to define ‘hate speech,'” Volokh writes, “any more than it has had occasion to define rudeness, evil ideas, unpatriotic speech, or any other kind of speech that people might condemn but that does not constitute a legally relevant category.”
You may not care for everything that Ann Coulter has to say, but she is right… they can’t stop her from speaking there. She has a constitutional right to do so. I have a feeling that Coulter will set her own terms on this one and speak whether Berkeley likes it or not. That’s the same kind of independent spirit you will find in John Hawkins’ new book, ‘101 Things All Young Adults Should Know’. No one can take away your right to free speech in this country. No one, unless you let them.
Terresa Monroe-Hamilton is an editor and writer for Right Wing News. She owns and blogs at NoisyRoom.net. She is a Constitutional Conservative and NoisyRoom focuses on political and national issues of interest to the American public. Terresa is the editor at Trevor Loudon's site, New Zeal - trevorloudon.com. She also does research at KeyWiki.org. You can email Terresa here. NoisyRoom can be found on Facebook and on Twitter.