The Constitution of the United States of America is generally recognized, except by Representative Nancy Pelosi, as one of the most remarkable documents ever created by the mind of man. Originally written in May of 1787, its purpose was to limit government encroachment onto personal liberties. Its primary author, Thomas Jefferson, wrote, “The authority of people is a necessary foundation for a Constitution.” The Constitution of the United States has thus become a model to other nations. Then, as further thought was given, in March, 1789, ten amendments, known as the Bill of Rights, were added to give further weight to its intent. Primary among them was the First Amendment, the right to free speech.
Liberal Democrats, whose primary belief is that government bureaucrats should control every aspect of our lives, have been chipping away at it ever since, declaring it to be an obsolete creation of “old white men,” and not applicable to the realities of today’s more modern political philosophies.
Last month, the Constitution, and our liberties of expression, took another hit in the enactment of The Federal Restricted Buildings and Grounds Improvement Act of 2011 (HR 347). Just be aware that whenever you see a piece of legislation labeled as some sort of improvement or benefit to the people’s welfare or liberties, its purpose is more likely to be just the opposite. This law has absolutely nothing to do with either buildings or grounds, but everything to do with stifling our freedom of speech if it is in any way critical of the President, or anyone else he so designates.
Just so you know I’m not making this stuff up, following are several paragraphs from the law itself. (Frankly, this law is very short, only two pages!)
1752. Restricted building or grounds
‘‘(1) knowingly enters or remains in any restricted building or grounds without lawful authority to do so;
‘‘(2) knowingly, and with intent to impede or disrupt the orderly conduct of Government business or official functions, engages in disorderly or disruptive conduct in, or within such proximity to, any restricted building or grounds when, or so that, such conduct, in fact, impedes or disrupts the orderly conduct of Government business or official functions; or attempts or conspires to do so, shall be punished as provided in subsection (b).
‘‘(1) the term ‘restricted buildings or grounds’ means any posted, cordoned off, or otherwise restricted area—
‘‘(A) of the White House or its grounds, or the Vice President’s official residence or its grounds;
‘‘(B) of a building or grounds where the President or other person protected by the Secret Service is or will be temporarily visiting; or
‘‘(C) of a building or grounds so restricted in conjunction with an event designated as a special event of national significance.
‘‘(b) The punishment for a violation of subsection (a) is—
‘‘(1) a fine under this title or imprisonment for not more than 10 years, or both.
This has very little to do with “the White House or its grounds,” since they are already protected by a 10’ wrought iron fence, a cadre of military personnel, and a gazillion laws to protect its sanctity. It has everything to do with anyone who would tend to criticize the President, and anyone else he so chooses, wherever he, or they, might be.
Current law makes it illegal to enter or remain in an area where certain government officials will be visiting, if and only if, the person knows it’s illegal to enter the restricted area but does so anyway.
But here’s the change, as Rep.Justin Amash (R-MI) wrote on his Facebook page. “[H.R. 347] expands current law to make it a crime to enter or remain in an area where an official is visiting even if the person does not know it’s illegal to be in that area and has no reason to suspect it’s illegal.”
Since being signed into law on March 9th, we are already seeing its implications. On the President’s recent campaign trip to Milwaukee, WI, the presidential motorcade was routed through a residential area where a man, his wife and their two small children, were watching from their front yard.
They also had a sign that was not friendly toward the President. The Secret Service made them leave their own front yard and confine themselves to their residence, out of sight of the President, or anyone else who might see how they voiced their opinion.
So, just in time for the 2012 elections; goodbye “Tea Partiers,” hello “Occupiers”!