The opinions expressed by contributors are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of RedState.com.
The progressive left has shown time and time again that they do not believe in the First Amendment or the concept of free speech. These folks value only speech that aligns with their ideology and have no problem silencing those who dissent.
However, that pesky First Amendment has prevented them from using the power of the state from squashing opposing voices. Of course, this does not mean they have not tried employing different methods to ensure those they don’t like remain silent.
But in this latest episode, Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) is shooting for the moon. On Sunday, it was reported that the lawmaker introduced a bill intended to stop white supremacist hate crimes. If passed, the Leading Against White Supremacy Act of 2023 would supposedly “prevent and prosecute white supremacy inspired hate crime and conspiracy to commit white supremacy inspired hate crime.” Most telling is that it would also “expand the scope of hate crimes.”
It gets even worse.
As RedState’s Bonchie reported:
In what can only be called a convoluted mess, the bill proposes that a white person who “vilifies” any non-white person and has their words end up on social media, accessible by “persons who are predisposed to engaging in any action in furtherance of a white supremacy inspired hate crime,” would themselves be committing a federal crime.
To anyone with an IQ higher than room temperature, it is clear what Lee’s objective is here. She and her comrades in Congress want to expand the definition of “hate crime” and “conspiracy” in a way that covers even criticism of a nonwhite American. The language is so ambiguous that it is not difficult to imagine how such a piece of legislation could easily be weaponized against political opposition.
This is, of course, by design, isn’t it?
Over the past decade, Democrats have been looking for ways to use the power of the state to tamp down on the expression of ideas. In New York last year, the state government passed a measure that forces online platforms to publish a policy explaining how they will address online speech that might “vilify, humiliate, or incite violence” against members of a protected class.
The legislation requires these platforms to provide an avenue through which visitors can complain about “hateful” content and mandates that these companies answer these complaints with a direct response. And what happens if a company refuses to comply? Well, they might be slapped in the kisser with daily fines of $1,000 per violation.
Of course, those who crafted the language of the law forgot to define the terms “vilify,” “humiliate,” or “incite.” These definitions are conspicuously vague. Almost as if they want to make it easier for New York’s government to punish those who are not doing enough to censor opinions of which it does not approve.
The Foundation for Individual Rights and Expression (FIRE) sued New York Attorney General Letitia James, challenging the law. Jay Diaz, a senior attorney for the organization, argued: “In the name of combating ‘hateful conduct,’ New York’s new law reaches a vast amount of everyday commentary — jokes, political debates, random commentary, you name it. That’s a problem. The First Amendment protects all of us, and this new law doesn’t.”
Of course, we would be remiss to forget about the revelations that came with the Twitter Files. CEO Elon Musk has dropped bomb after bomb showing how the FBI, CIA, and other government agencies pressured the company to focus on censoring mostly American accounts expressing views about the 2020 election and COVID-19 pandemic that were not Democrat-approved.
This bill will likely fail if it is put to a vote. But Lee knows this. She likely wants to force a vote so Democrats can go on MSNBC and scream about how racist Republicans opposed a law designed to stop white supremacist hate crimes because they want black people to be killed by racist terrorists. Nevertheless, the fact that she would even put forth such a law shows how far these people will go to make sure people who disagree with them are not allowed to speak.