HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » Government says the anti-... » Reply #14

Response to Mojorabbit (Reply #12)

Tue Mar 20, 2012, 02:47 PM

14. I can. And will.

The thrust of the article is that HR 347 represents a "radical shift in free speech law" and "targets" Occupy protesters.

We'll start with the "targeting" Occupy argument. To argue that HR 347 targets Occupy you have to believe that the members of Congress who first introduced this legislation in 2010 had a crystal ball that told them that the Occupy movement was coming. Personally, I'm not a big believer in crystal ball-based arguments.

As for the "radical" nature of the changes in existing law, the article claims that the old law only protected areas around the President, VP, or any others under the protection of the Secret Service" while the new law now makes it punishable by up to 10 years in prison to protest anywhere the Secret Service may be guarding someone. It also suggests that the new law is more expansive than the old law because "it's almost impossible to to predict what constitutes 'disorderly or disruptive conduct' or what sorts of conduct authorities deem to 'impede or disrupt the orderly conduct of Government business or official functions.'" Another purported expansion in the law: it covers "any occasion that is officially defined as a National Special Security Event". In summing up, the article claims that the old law turned on a "designated place" while the new law turns on "what persons and spaces are deemed to warrant Secret Service protection."

Now here's the problem with all of the above -- every single thing that they've identified as being in the "new" law already exists in the law that was in effect the day before the President signed the new law. Put another way, everything that they are complaining about as being an effort to target Occupy and a "radical shift" in the law would be exactly the same had the President vetoed HR 347.

Don't believe me? Compare 18 USC 1752 as it existed the day before the President signed HR 347 to what 18 USC 1752 looks like after HR 347 amended it.

Prohibition on "disorderly or disruptive conduct" and activities that "impede or disrupt the orderly conduct of Government business or official functions"? In both the old and new law.

Application to NSSEs? In both the old and new law.

The expansion of the scope of the bill from "designated places" to "what persons and spaces are deemed to warrant Secret Service protection"? Let's let the language of the old and new laws speak for themselves.

Here's what the old law covered: "any posted, cordoned off, or otherwise restricted area" (1) "of a building or grounds where the President or other person protected by the Secret Service is or will be temporarily visiting" and (2) "of a buidling or grounds so restricted in conjunction with an event designated as a special event of national significance."

Here's what the new law covers: "any posted, cordoned off, or otherwise restricted area (1) "of the White House or its grounds, or the Vice President's official residence or its grounds; (2) "of a building or grounds where the President or any other person protected by the Secret Service is or will be temporarily visiting" and (3) "of a building or grounds so restricted in conjunction with an event designated as a special event of national significance."

In other words, the "radical shift" in the types of areas covered by the new law compared to the old law? It now expressly covers the White House, White House grounds, Vice President's residence and VP's residence grounds.

So excuse me if I roll my eyes at this obvious attempt to mislead people as to the effect of HR 347 on existing law. Its not a "radical shift"; it wasn't enacted to "target" Occupy, and the authors are too smart not to know that so they don't deserve to be cut any slack.

Reply to this post

Back to OP Alert abuse Link to post in-thread

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 29 replies Author Time Post
kpete Mar 2012 OP
TheWraith Mar 2012 #1
Post removed Mar 2012 #2
SomethingFishy Mar 2012 #6
Mojorabbit Mar 2012 #12
LineLineLineReply I can. And will.
onenote Mar 2012 #14
Zalatix Mar 2012 #17
woo me with science Mar 2012 #3
Autumn Mar 2012 #4
randome Mar 2012 #5
Robb Mar 2012 #7
randome Mar 2012 #8
SidDithers Mar 2012 #9
jeff47 Mar 2012 #10
TheKentuckian Mar 2012 #19
jeff47 Mar 2012 #20
ProSense Mar 2012 #11
Mojorabbit Mar 2012 #13
Zalatix Mar 2012 #18
onenote Mar 2012 #23
jeff47 Mar 2012 #21
ProSense Mar 2012 #25
jeff47 Mar 2012 #26
ProSense Mar 2012 #27
ProSense Mar 2012 #24
Mojorabbit Mar 2012 #28
girl gone mad Mar 2012 #16
jeff47 Mar 2012 #22
girl gone mad Mar 2012 #15
geek tragedy Mar 2012 #29
Please login to view edit histories.