By Mario Diaz
Inch by inch, the Democratic Party continues to ostracize Christians. Its latest attack consists of forcing any Christian who would like to support the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) platform to betray his deeply held religious beliefs on the issue of marriage.
Back in May, when President Obama personally came out in support of same-sex “marriage,” I spoke to a group of pastors in Maryland, all of them serving minority communities. The vast majority of those pastors were lifelong Democrats, so they were very concerned. The one thing that gave them hope was that the president had gone out of his way to make sure everyone knew that his support reflected merely his personal beliefs.
Several of us saw right through that and cautioned the pastors that the distinction seemed to be a political calculation more than anything else and that the next logical step would be to amend the DNC platform, forcing each and every one of them to “evolve” along with the president in religious beliefs on marriage. The majority reflected on it. A few thought we were blowing things out of proportion.
We were not.
For the first time in history, the DNC’s platform committee voted on Aug. 12 to endorse same-sex “marriage.” The language calls for the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which, for federal purposes, defines marriage as the union between a man and a woman. The language is set to go for approval at the Democratic National Convention in September.
It was sad to read quotes from Minnesota state Sen. Scott Dibble, a committee member, explaining the decision in the Christian Post. “Young people are looking for a political home right now,” he said. Forget whether or not it is the right thing to do; it will bring young people.
Newark, N.J., Mayor Cory Booker, a committee co-chairman, expressed similar sentiments: “This campaign is not going to turn on ‘gay marriage.’ This campaign is going to turn on who has the best ideas for the economy.”
It is simply amazing that this is their concern while they trample on the sincere Christian beliefs of many of their own members. Those are not important if Mr. Obama still can win.
Their arrogance is not unfounded. Many devout Christians (a lot of them within the minority communities with whom I am most familiar) have endured previous attacks on their religious beliefs and have continued to retain their party affiliation. They still will vote for Mr. Obama.
Others are saying “no more.” They have endured the exclusion and ridicule of anyone who does not toe the party line when it comes to abortion, for example. The recent violation of religious freedom under the Department of Health and Human Services’ contraception mandate is another example. Now they will be painted as bigots because of their religious beliefs by the people they are expected to support.
Christians are not to worry, the Democrats say. The platform also reads, “We also support the freedom of churches and religious entities to decide how to administer marriage as a religious sacrament without government interference.” Yes, they accept the freedom of churches and religious entities. Apparently the First Amendment was created only for pastors and churches.
That language is the most insulting of all. It is, indeed, worse than the support of “gay marriage,” because it shows a complete disregard for religious liberty in the broader sense. It shows a complete lack of understanding of the First Amendment and, more important, shows us once again that they are not done. Christians will continue to be pounded under this poor view of religious freedom.
As we discussed when the president made his “personal” remarks, they will not change the platform just to repeal DOMA; the Democratic Party will be working to enact laws that will make sure Christians are silenced on this issue of marriage, at least outside the church walls (to start).
Overblown? I think not.
Mario Diaz is legal counsel for Concerned Women for America.
Doug Hagmann Thursday, August 16, 2012
If you are an outspoken Christian in America, you need to be concerned. If you are an outspoken Christian in America who happens to be a gun owner, you need to be very concerned. And if you are a Christian gun owner who disagrees with the Progressive anti-Christian agenda in America and have a platform to inform others, you better believe that you are under intense scrutiny. Sound like paranoid propaganda? Read on.
It’s one thing to say that there is a war against Christianity and an active agenda to disarm Americans, but it’s another thing altogether to watch it unfold, up close and personal. And yet another to actually document an insidious but effective tactic that is presently being used to silence and disarm Christians right here in America. In this report, I will expose a new tactic being used by the atheistic communist supporters of the Obama regime to silence Christian critics and to disarm them at the same time.
I might have never known about this had it not been for our nightly radio program, the Hagmann & Hagmann Report. In fact, our show played a minor role in the events that transpired. Jason Ergoff, a 28-year old web designer and graphics artist from Scranton, Pennsylvania, called in to our show last week to comment on current events, including how Christianity seems to be under attack in America and across the globe. From the statements made by the CEO of Chick Fil-A regarding traditional families as defined by the Bible to the resurgence of attacks on Christians across the Middle East as a result of the “Arab Spring,” we conversed about how Christians are in the crosshairs now more than any other time in recent history. We talked about Barack Hussein Obama’s role in what seems to be overt antagonism toward Christianity and Biblical principles. Mr. Ergoff’s input to our show was a rational and welcome discourse about the events we see unfolding.
Mr. Ergoff called our program before and has always been articulate and well informed. His call last week was equally articulate and without unnecessary emotion or hype, just like his previous calls. He made his points in a very well-reasoned, rational and non-threatening manner and said nothing with which we could disagree.
Through our dialogue that included off air correspondence, we were delighted to learn that Mr. Egroff himself is hosting his own weekly radio program called Revelation News Radio, a show that provides his analysis of current events through the prism of the Holy Bible. As he is just getting started, he did a few shows leading up his weekly slot, including a show on August 7, 2012, a day after he called our program as a guest. After his call to our program, we moved on, and our program concluded without incident. This is when events began to get very interesting, and go very wrong for Mr. Egroff.
As Mr. Egroff was seated at his computer preparing to listen to our program that began at 8:00 p.m. on Wednesday, August 8, 2012, he received a telephone call from a man who identified himself as “Officer Steve” from the city of Scranton Police Department, who told Jason that he was calling just to check on him, to see if he was “alright.” Jason, who never heard of “Officer Steve,” or really understood the nature of the call, responded that he was fine and had no problems where he might need the police. He was taken off guard by the call and became uneasy, especially since the officer was elusive in providing a legitimate reason for the call.
While our broadcast was playing on Jason’s computer, he received another telephone call from a “restricted” number. It was “Officer Steve” again, although this time he was calling from the front porch of Mr. Ergoff’s house. The officer reintroduced himself, and asked Jason to turn on the porch light and step outside as he wanted to speak to him. Knowing that he had done nothing wrong, Jason complied with the officer’s request. As he stepped onto the porch, “Officer Steve” was there to meet him, accompanied by another law enforcement officer.
I should note that Jason Ergoff is not stupid or naive, and sensed that had he not complied with the officer’s request, things might have gotten ugly. “It was a matter of choosing my battles,” he told me, but he was still not quite ready for what happened next.
The officer told Jason that the Scranton Police Department received a telephone call from a “friend” living in New York City who claimed to be concerned about Jason’s mental health. This friend works as a physical therapy assistant at a large New York City hospital. It is important to note his “friend’s” professional position is well outside of the mental health practice.
According to the officer, Jason’s friend contacted his department, and claimed that he was “worried” about him, citing his recent talk about the Bible in general, Biblical prophecy in particular, and the role of the Obama regime in the larger picture detailed by prophecy. This “friend” has been listening to Jason’s calls to The Hagmann & Hagmann Report as well as Jason’s own recently started BTR radio show.
Additionally, Jason’s friend knew that he owns a couple of guns, none that are of much monetary value or the type people intent on doing harm would possess. Despite this, his friend expressed concern that Jason could possibly use the weapons in some nefarious manner. Based on Jason’s own admission, he rarely uses the guns to target practice and has little attachment to them. During my interview with Jason, he said that he did not care if he had a gun or not, they are simply not that important to him.
The officer told Jason that he had to go with them based on a mental health complaint that originated solely from his friend, the physical therapist assistant in New York, who claimed that he was worried for Jason’s safety. At this point, Jason was under the control of the officers, and was not permitted to be alone as he entered his house to shut things down for the trip he was about to take.
The officers took Jason to the local hospital psychiatric ward for “evaluation.” For the next 18 hours, he was subjected to some of the most humiliating searches, probes, and questions by hospital personnel. Questions included those specific to his religious faith and what he thought about the government and Obama. Questions that were structured in such a manner that regardless of the answer, they would result in portraying him as a dangerous, gun-owning Christian zealot. All as a result of Jason expressing his non-violent, well reasoned, and articulate views on our show as well as his own. All ostensibly from the concern of one “friend” from another state and well over 100 miles away.
Jason Ergoff was indeed evaluated by two medical health professionals. Despite the manner in which Mr. Ergoff was picked-up, detained, probed, prodded and interviewed (some might call it an interrogation), he remained calm and did his best to comply. He believed that the medical professionals would find him in good mental health and realize that this was all a mistake. He could then use his experience to help others.
Jason was indeed released after about 20 hours of evaluation. He was given his belt and shoelaces back, and all of his personal belongings taken from him upon admission. He was released without fanfare, without apology, and without explanation. But with little additional interaction, Jason was now labeled with the medical diagnosis of “psychosis” and urged to take medication that he states he does not need and does not want. Additionally, Jason was released under the condition that he gets rid of any and all firearms he owns and report to a crisis counseling center upon discharge.
This gets a bit more interesting when Jason, who felt it best to accommodate the evaluating doctors, reported to the crisis counseling center as instructed. Mr. Ergoff furnished the handful of paperwork to the crisis center worker who spent a few minutes looking over the documents. After a lengthy pause, she looked at Jason and made the following chilling observation as if it was a matter of routine: “So, you’re here because of your religious beliefs.” As Jason tells it, this was not a question, but a statement of fact.
As a career investigator, I’ve been exposed to people with mental health issues, and interviewed many. I know that it’s easy to be fooled, and that a person might appear normal, say the correct things, but then turn out to be a complete lunatic. I’ll admit that in Jason’s case, I expected to find just that scenario. I conducted a lengthy interview with Jason, asked him some very personal questions, and demanded to see documentation related to this incident. I was not about to get fooled by Jason or anyone else. To his credit, Mr. Ergoff complied with my every request and provided me with the hospital documentation I requested.
After spending two days of constant research and investigation into his case alone, I must report here that there is something very wrong about this case, and it’s not Jason Ergoff. Despite the diagnosis of “psychosis,” he was permitted to keep his guns, at least for now. As for his “friend” who was so worried about his welfare, I’ve got his “number.” You see, one thing I did not tell Mr. Ergoff is that I was able to learn the identity of the man who turned him in as a threat to himself and society. I’ve tracked his IP addresses and his online activity. My investigation found that this is no ordinary case of someone being concerned about a friend’s welfare, but part of a larger agenda to silence the Christian conservatives and critics of this administration. I am holding that information and documentation closely, as I feel that Jason and perhaps others might need it when they come for his guns or even him once again.
By the way, the concerned friend showed just where his concern actually lies, and it certainly does not appear to be with Jason. That was clearly illustrated in a 3:00 a.m. phone call made to Jason by his friend, where he screamed at Jason for daring to mention the incident on our program, sans names, of course.
Lest you think this is an isolated case, I have since heard from five-(5) other individuals in different parts of the U.S. that this has happened to within the last thirty-(30) days. It appears the war against freedom of opinion, freedom of speech, openly professing one’s belief in God and the right to bear arms is now sufficient to earn you a medical diagnosis of “psychosis.”
Christian gun owners of America, be forewarne
St. Louis residents praise sight of military vehicles in neighborhoods
Paul Joseph Watson
Monday, June 25, 2012
Following reports last week that U.S. Army humvees would be rolling down residential streets and highways in St. Louis as part of a training program, local news media channels featured interviews with residents who praised the sight of troops on the streets as a valuable crime-fighting tool similar to that used in foreign countries.
As we reported on Friday, the exercise is part of a U.S. Army program run by military police from Fort Meade, Maryland focused around training MPs from St. Louis how to drive heavily armored vehicles “on highways and on city streets.”
According to a Fox 2 St. Louis report, “people who live and work in the area think the army training is a good idea.”
Indeed, the report features interviews with two residents, one of whom states, “I think it’s the same way when you go to other countries…they don’t have police officers they have troops, and I think it kind of scares a lot of people…it might cut down on a whole lot of crime because they don’t know if they’re military or the police.”
“I think it’s fantastic because it might slow down some of the crime rate,” added another.
In a separate KSDK report, although acknowledging that some had expressed fears about martial law, the news channel emphasized how other residents had vowed to “stop and salute” the tanks as they rolled by.
While these news channels have framed the idea of troops on the streets as normal and reasonable, others have gone even further.
A joint drill between military and police in South Florida last month involving troops storming a building in the middle of the night, unannounced to local residents, was characterized by local media coverage not as a frightening example of how Americans are being acclimatized to accept a state of martial law but as a ‘cool tourist story’.
Why is the news media, in its editorial decision to feature interviews with residents who laud troops on the streets of America in a similar vein to despotic foreign countries, actively promoting the idea of martial law?
Having U.S. troops perform duties normally ascribed to law enforcement officers is forbidden under section 1385 of the Posse Comitatus Act, which states, “Whoever, except in cases and under circumstances expressly authorized by the Constitution or Act of Congress, willfully uses any part of the Army or the Air Force as a posse comitatus or otherwise to execute the laws shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than two years, or both.”
Why is the news media giving editorial credence to something that is not only completely illegal but fundamentally anti-American and more in line with what you’d expect to see in the former Soviet Union or modern-day North Korea?
I have to say that this event, which is being labeled a “training exercise”, makes very little sense to me. U.S. Army troops all the way from Maryland running open exercises in armored personnel carriers on the busy streets of St. Louis? I know Maryland is a small state, but is there really not enough room at Ft. Detrick to accommodate a tank column and some troops? Are there not entire fake neighborhood and town complexes built with taxpayer dollars on military bases across the country meant to facilitate a realistic urban environment for troops to train in? And why travel hundreds of miles to Missouri? At the very least, this is a massive waste of funds.
On the other hand, such an action on the part of the Department of Defense makes perfect sense if the goal is to acclimate citizens to the idea of seeing tanks and armed military acting in a policing capacity. Just check out the two random idiots the local news affiliate picked to interview in St. Louis on the subject. Both state that they think the exercise is a “great idea”, because having the military on the streets would help to “reduce crime”.
The U.S. Army has been reluctant to provide details of the exercise, with army offices in St. Louis and Washington, D.C. refusing to return calls. When asked how residents should respond to the sight of armored vehicles being driven around their neighborhoods, U.S. Army Sergeant Cornelius Ivory discouraged citizens from taking video and photographs of the tanks and urged them not to get too close.
“They need to know to stay away from it,” Ivory told KSDK.
Over the course of the last 15 years, Infowars has documented numerous urban warfare training drills across the country which revolve around role playing exercises wherein troops are trained to fulfil law enforcement duties as well as incarcerating Americans in detention centers.
Exercises like the one currently taking place in St. Louis, scheduled to run until June 28, are part of the transition of the U.S. Army into a domestic police force, a role advocated by Chief of Staff of the U.S. Army, General Raymond T. Odierno in a recent Foreign Affairs piece.
Watch the original newscast we featured in our report on Friday below.
Paul Joseph Watson is the editor and writer for Prison Planet.com. He is the author of Order Out Of Chaos. Watson is also a regular fill-in host for The Alex Jones Show and Infowars Nightly News.
Senator Sessions: “We spend our time worrying about the UN, the Arab League, NATO, and too little time, in my opinion, worrying about the elected representatives of the United States.”
Pentagon Launches Desperate Damage Control Over Shocking Panetta Testimony
The United States has ceded control of its affairs to international bureaucrats
Paul Joseph Watson
Thursday, March 8, 2012
Alex Jones: “This represents absolute 100 per cent proof that the military industrial complex which runs the United States is under the control of foreign central banks who are imposing a military dictatorship.”
The Pentagon is engaging in damage control after shocking testimony yesterday by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta at a Senate Armed Services Committee congressional hearing during which it was confirmed that the U.S. government is now completely beholden to international power structures and that the legislative branch is a worthless relic.
Daneen G. Peterson, Ph.D.
How often have you heard people refer to America as a Democracy? When was the last time that you heard America referred to as a Republic, or better yet . . . a Constitutional Republic?
There is a very good reason that our Pledge of Allegiance refers to our country as a Republic, and there is a very good reason that our Declaration of Independence and our Constitution do not even mentioned the word “democracy”.
Many people are under the false impression our form of government is a democracy, or representative democracy. This is of course completely untrue. The Founders were extremely knowledgeable about the issue of democracy and feared a democracy as much as a monarchy. They understood that the only entity that can take away the people’s freedom is their own government, either by being too weak to protect them from external threats or by becoming too powerful and taking over every aspect of life. Isn’t that where we are today?
In a Republic, the sovereignty resides with the people themselves. In a Republic, one may act on his own or through his representatives when he chooses to solve a problem. The people have no obligation to the government; instead, the government is a servant of the people, and obliged to its owner — We the People. Many politicians have lost sight of that fact.
A Constitutional Republic has some similarities to democracy in that it uses democratic processes to elect representatives and pass new laws, etc. The critical difference lies in the fact that a Constitutional Republic has a Constitution that limits the powers of the government. It also spells out how the government is structured, creating checks on its power and balancing power between the different branches.
The goal of a Constitutional Republic was to avoid the dangerous extremes of either tyranny or mobocracy; but what exists in America today is a far cry from the Constitutional Republic our forefathers brought forth.
Today we have a mobocracy occurring in our streets all across America. Sadly, such mobocracy or ‘mob rule’ was endorsed and encouraged by Sen. John McCain who praised the recent wave of pro-illegal immigration demonstrations by saying, “if the protesters hang tough they will succeed in forcing Congress to liberalize immigration laws. If such demonstrations continue, I think we will have a bill for the President to sign soon . . . The more debate, the more demonstrations, the more likely we will prevail.” He was of course referring to the Senate’s massive illegal-alien amnesty bill S. 2611 which did in fact, pass. Was S. 2611 passed to appease the mob? If so, it is a perfect example of rule by mobocracy, which is a fundamental flaw of a democracy.
Article IV Section 4 of the Constitution states: “The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion . . . .
Not only is our Constitution being ignored, the exact opposite is being encouraged by John McCain and seconded by all those who voted for S. 2611 in the Senate. If you want to preserve the Constitutional Republic you should vote out of office every single senator that voted for S. 2611.
Politicians, like all public servants, take an oath to serve, defend and uphold the Constitution of the United States. They don’t pledge allegiance to a political party, and ideology or and a specific group or individual.
However, rule by mobocracy is only a tiny part of what is happening here in America. The larger problem we are facing is related to those who would support and approve of mob rule. It is called tyranny. What is tyranny? Simply put, we are being governed by tyrants who have usurped the will of the people. Our government has become a raging bull elephant, no pun intended, and is totally out of control. We are well on the road to fascism, which was defined by Mussolini as the combining of capitalism and Communism.
There is underway . . . a betrayal of the American people by a government cabal who are bent on destroying our sovereignty in order to create a North American Union. The miscreants include many who function at the highest levels in our government. Many hold membership in the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) and the Trilateral Commission and pursue a subversive agenda. The cabal is deliberately circumventing the U.S. Congress and ‘We the People’ in blatant violation of our Constitution. Collectively they are committing treason. If you continue to believe that the illegal alien invasion is the biggest threat to America, you will never understand that there is something far more dangerous to our country called the “Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America” (SPP).
I urge you to educate yourself. If you have access to a computer you need to read what your own government has posted on their official websites such as the Whitehouse.gov, SPP.gov, State.gov and Canada.USembassy.gov. You will be aghast at the nearly complete destruction of our sovereignty, Bill of Rights, Constitution, laws, Republic, and freedoms they have already achieved. This heinous ongoing treason has been engineered by an entrenched cabal of legislators, courts, military brass, and government employees in this and prior administrations. The tyranny is being facilitated by hundreds of people embedded at all levels of the executive branch and Congress constituting a so called ‘Shadow Government’ who are working in concert to dismantle this country in plain sight. Their agenda was engineered by the Council on Foreign Relations(CFR) and kept secret by a deliberately silent media who work in collaboration by treating the America people like mushrooms. We are kept in the dark and fed you know what . . . mislead by their propaganda.
If you don’t have a computer, get one. It is the last bastion of freedom to information and knowledge left to ‘We the People’. Be advised that the Congress is working hard to eliminate, curtail and control your access to the Internet as we speak.
Why is it Most Americans are Unaware of the CFR Organization?
David Rockefeller, chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) for 15 years (1970-1985), also founded and is the honorary chairman of the Trilateral Commission. His father John D. and brother Nelson purchased and then donated the land beneath the UN for $8.5 million dollars, then claimed it as a charitable deduction.
As for how the machinations of the CFR have remained unnoticed . . . in 1991 in Baden-Baden, Germany, David Rockefeller gloatingly said: “We’re grateful to The Washington Post, The New York Times, Time Magazine and other great publications whose directors have attended our meetings and respected their promises of discretion for almost forty years. It would have been impossible for us to develop our plan for the world if we had been subject to the bright lights of publicity during those years. But the world is now more sophisticated and prepared to march towards a world government..” . . . Are you?
CFR member Richard N. Gardner, who in a 1974 article titled: “The Hard Road to World Order” wrote: In short, the “house of world order” will have to be built from the bottom up rather than the top down [and require] . . . an end run around national sovereignty, eroding it piece by piece.
And what does David Rockefeller say about his work?
For more than a century, ideological extremists at either end of the political spectrum have seized upon well-publicized incidents to attack the Rockefeller family for the inordinate influence they claim we wield over American political and economic institutions. Some even believe we are part of a secret cabal working against the best interest of the United States, characterizing my family and me as ‘internationalists ‘ and of conspiring with others around the world to build a more integrated global political and economic structure – one world, if you will. If that’s the charge, I stand guilty, and I am proud of it.
What colossal arrogance! Like other globalists, he loses sight of man’s humanity and the very fundamental nature of what it is to be human. Mankind will always resist subjugation and will always struggle to have and maintain their freedoms; after all, for us Americans, it is the very essence of what it is to be an American.
The Council on Foreign Relations has placed its membership in policy-making positions with the State Department and other federal agencies. Every Secretary of State since 1944, with the exception of James F. Byrnes, has been a member of the [CFR] council. The trend continued as both Condalezza Rice and Colin Powell are members of the CFR.
Some others who have spoken out about the ‘Shadow Government’:
Rear Admiral Chester Ward, USN (Retd.), who was a member of the CFR for sixteen years. He wrote, “The most powerful clique in these elitist groups have one objective in common–They want to bring about the surrender of the sovereignty and the national independence of the United States.”
Felix Frankfurter, Justice of the Supreme Court (1939-1962) said: “The real rulers in Washington are invisible and exercise power from behind the scenes.”
In a speech given on February 23, 1954, Senator William Jenner warned America: “Outwardly we have a Constitutional government. We have operating within our government and political system, another body representing another form of government, a bureaucratic elite which believes our Constitution is outmoded.”
In fact, the Constitution is far more than ‘outmoded,’ according to President Bush who rebuffed GOP leader’s request to soft pedal some parts of the ‘Patriot Act’ by saying: “I don’t give a goddamn . . . I’m the President and the Commander-in-Chief. Do it my way.” Then, responding to an aid who stated: “There is a valid case that the provisions in this law undermine the Constitution.” Bush screamed back: “Stop throwing the Constitution in my face . . . It’s just a goddamned piece of paper!”
As for the ‘bureaucratic elite’ of wealthy globalists who function as the ‘Shadow Government’ . . . their ultimate goal is a so called New World Order, which of course is not new but is, in reality, a One World Order. To that end, Franklin Delano Roosevelt managed to condemn their monopolist lust from the grave in a message found enshrined on his memorial in Washington, DC:
THEY (WHO) SEEK TO ESTABLISH SYSTEMS OF GOVERNMENT BASED ON THE REGIMENTATION OF ALL HUMAN BEINGS BY A HANDFUL OF INDIVIDUAL RULERS CALL THIS A NEW ORDER. IT IS NOT NEW AND IT IS NOT ORDER.
If you think about it, by sending our manufacturing base to Mexico or other foreign countries, the globalists have forced America to become global when in the past we were self-sufficient and produced all we needed for ourselves and exported our excess around the world. Now we are dependent on countries like Communist China, etc., to supply stores like Wal-Mart with nearly all of its merchandise.
The Shadow Government has begun their ‘race to the finish’ and has become ever more arrogant and bold. They have concluded that they are so close to complete conquest that they are ever more blatantly flouting our Constitution and laws than you can ever imagine in your wildest of dreams of hell on earth.
Daneen G. Peterson, Ph.D. is a Researcher, Author and Founder of StopTheNorthAmericanUnion.com
February 29, 2012
Just when you thought the government couldn’t ruin the First Amendment any further: The House of Representatives approved a bill on Monday that outlaws protests in instances where some government officials are nearby, whether or not you even know it.
The US House of Representatives voted 388-to-3 in favor of H.R. 347 late Monday, a bill which is being dubbed the Federal Restricted Buildings and Grounds Improvement Act of 2011. In the bill, Congress officially makes it illegal to trespass on the grounds of the White House, which, on the surface, seems not just harmless and necessary, but somewhat shocking that such a rule isn’t already on the books. The wording in the bill, however, extends to allow the government to go after much more than tourists that transverse the wrought iron White House fence.
Under the act, the government is also given the power to bring charges against Americans engaged in political protest anywhere in the country.
Under current law, White House trespassers are prosecuted under a local ordinance, a Washington, DC legislation that can bring misdemeanor charges for anyone trying to get close to the president without authorization. Under H.R. 347, a federal law will formally be applied to such instances, but will also allow the government to bring charges to protesters, demonstrators and activists at political events and other outings across America.
The new legislation allows prosecutors to charge anyone who enters a building without permission or with the intent to disrupt a government function with a federal offense if Secret Service is on the scene, but the law stretches to include not just the president’s palatial Pennsylvania Avenue home. Under the law, any building or grounds where the president is visiting — even temporarily — is covered, as is any building or grounds “restricted in conjunction with an event designated as a special event of national significance.”
It’s not just the president who would be spared from protesters, either.
Covered under the bill is any person protected by the Secret Service. Although such protection isn’t extended to just everybody, making it a federal offense to even accidently disrupt an event attended by a person with such status essentially crushes whatever currently remains of the right to assemble and peacefully protest.
Hours after the act passed, presidential candidate Rick Santorum was granted Secret Service protection. For the American protester, this indeed means that glitter-bombing the former Pennsylvania senator is officially a very big no-no, but it doesn’t stop with just him. Santorum’s coverage under the Secret Service began on Tuesday, but fellow GOP hopeful Mitt Romney has already been receiving such security. A campaign aide who asked not to be identified confirmed last week to CBS News that former House Speaker Newt Gingrich has sought Secret Service protection as well. Even former contender Herman Cain received the armed protection treatment when he was still in the running for the Republican Party nod.
In the text of the act, the law is allowed to be used against anyone who knowingly enters or remains in a restricted building or grounds without lawful authority to do so, but those grounds are considered any area where someone — rather it’s President Obama, Senator Santorum or Governor Romney — will be temporarily visiting, whether or not the public is even made aware. Entering such a facility is thus outlawed, as is disrupting the orderly conduct of “official functions,” engaging in disorderly conduct “within such proximity to” the event or acting violent to anyone, anywhere near the premises. Under that verbiage, that means a peaceful protest outside a candidate’s concession speech would be a federal offense, but those occurrences covered as special event of national significance don’t just stop there, either. And neither does the list of covered persons that receive protection.
Outside of the current presidential race, the Secret Service is responsible for guarding an array of politicians, even those from outside America. George W Bush is granted protection until ten years after his administration ended, or 2019, and every living president before him is eligible for life-time, federally funded coverage. Visiting heads of state are extended an offer too, and the events sanctioned as those of national significance — a decision that is left up to the US Department of Homeland Security — extends to more than the obvious. While presidential inaugurations and meeting of foreign dignitaries are awarded the title, nearly three dozen events in all have been considered a National Special Security Event (NSSE) since the term was created under President Clinton. Among past events on the DHS-sanctioned NSSE list are Super Bowl XXXVI, the funerals of Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford, most State of the Union addresses and the 2008 Democratic and Republican National Conventions.
With Secret Service protection awarded to visiting dignitaries, this also means, for instance, that the federal government could consider a demonstration against any foreign president on American soil as a violation of federal law, as long as it could be considered disruptive to whatever function is occurring.
When thousands of protesters are expected to descend on Chicago this spring for the 2012 G8 and NATO summits, they will also be approaching the grounds of a National Special Security Event. That means disruptive activity, to whichever court has to consider it, will be a federal offense under the act.
And don’t forget if you intend on fighting such charges, you might not be able to rely on evidence of your own. In the state of Illinois, videotaping the police, under current law, brings criminals charges. Don’t fret. It’s not like the country will really try to enforce it — right?
On the bright side, does this mean that the law could apply to law enforcement officers reprimanded for using excessive force on protesters at political events? Probably. Of course, some fear that the act is being created just to keep those demonstrations from ever occuring, and given the vague language on par with the loose definition of a “terrorist” under the NDAA, if passed this act is expected to do a lot more harm to the First Amendment than good.
United States Representative Justin Amash (MI-03) was one of only three lawmakers to vote against the act when it appeared in the House late Monday. Explaining his take on the act through his official Facebook account on Tuesday, Rep. Amash writes, “The bill 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.”
“Some government officials may need extraordinary protection to ensure their safety. But criminalizing legitimate First Amendment activity — even if that activity is annoying to those government officials — violates our rights,” adds the representative.
Now that the act has overwhelmingly made it through the House, the next set of hands to sift through its pages could very well be President Barack Obama; the US Senate had already passed the bill back on February 6. Less than two months ago, the president approved the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012, essentially suspending habeas corpus from American citizens. Could the next order out of the Executive Branch be revoking some of the Bill of Rights? Only if you consider the part about being able to assemble a staple of the First Amendment, really. Don’t worry, though. Obama was, after all, a constitutional law professor. When he signed the NDAA on December 31, he accompanied his signature with a signing statement that let Americans know that, just because he authorized the indefinite detention of Americans didn’t mean he thought it was right.
Should President Obama suspend the right to assemble, Americans might expect another apology to accompany it in which the commander-in-chief condemns the very act he authorizes. If you disagree with such a decision, however, don’t take it to the White House. Sixteen-hundred Pennsylvania Avenue and the vicinity is, of course, covered under this act.
“High importance” message distributed by Senior Navy official
February 17, 2012
An email leaked by multiple active duty personnel shows that the military has issued a warning to troops encouraging them not to take part in the upcoming Veterans for Ron Paul 2012 march in Washington on Monday.
The email, posted to the group’s facebook event page and sent to organiser Adam Kokesh by several unconfirmed sources, lays out several directives on participation in political events by active and non active duty military.
Referring to the event as a “partisan political march”, the insinuation is clear – any active duty personnel, whether in uniform or not, and any reservists marching in uniform or otherwise deemed to be endorsing Ron Paul, could be reprimanded.
The email, apparently sent by Joel A. Weger, Senior Attorney at the Office of the Assistant General Counsel (Ethics) in the Department of the Navy, was sent on high importance and warns recipients “You may wish to advise your command regarding this particular event because of the apparent solicitation of active duty personnel”.
The full email is below:
From: Weger, Joel A CIV OGC, Ethics [mailto:joel.weger@NAVY.MIL]
Sent: Thursday, February 16, 2012 8:17
Subject: [ETHICS] Partisan Political March
It has come to our attention that a partisan political march targeting
military personnel is being organized for February 20, 2012. See link
As a reminder, active duty personnel are prohibited by DoD Directive 1344.10
paragraph 188.8.131.52 from marching in a partisan political parade regardless
of whether they are in uniform or civilian clothes. Reservists not on
active duty and retirees may not march in uniform pursuant to paragraph
4.1.4. Reservists not on active duty and retirees may march in civilian
clothes provided that they do not otherwise act in a manner that could
reasonably give rise to the inference or appearance of official sponsorship,
approval, or endorsement.
The directive is a lawful general regulation. Violations of paragraphs 4.1.
through 4.5. of the Directive by persons subject to the Uniform Code of
Military Justice are punishable under Article 92, “Failure to Obey Order or
In addition, DODI 1334.01, paragraph 3.1.2 prohibits the wearing of the
uniform by members of the armed forces (including retired members and
members of reserve components) during or in connection with political
You may wish to advise your command regarding this particular event because
of the apparent solicitation of active duty personnel.
Joel A. Weger
Department of the Navy
Office of the Assistant General Counsel (Ethics)
Adam Kokesh, co-founder of Veterans for Ron Paul 2012 and himself an Iraq war veteran, responded to the email by thanking the Navy for inadvertently promoting the event.
Watch the video:
The directives cited in the email were recently highlighted when it was revealed that someone within the military had taken exception to Reserve Corporal Jesse Thorsen’s endorsement of Ron Paul during the Congressman’s post-Iowa caucuses rally.
After mysteriously being cut short during a CNN interview, Thorsen, who has served two tours in Afghanistan and was due to head back for a third, was invited on to the stage by Paul himself to address Paul’s cheering supporters.
Thorsen, while not currently on active duty, duly received threats of reprimand for appearing in uniform with Paul.
As has been repeatedly noted, Ron Paul is the presidential choice of the troops. Paul has received more campaign donations from active duty military personnel than any other presidential candidate, including Barack Obama.
To date, Paul has collected $95,567 from individuals who listed their occupation as one of the branches of the US military or US Department of Defense.
|US Air Force||$9,785||$4,400||$4,400||$23,736||$0|
|US Coast Guard||$6,002||$0||$0||$3,716||$0|
|US Dept of Defense||$27,613||$2,150||$0||$9,527||$0|
|US Marine Corps||$1,700||$250||$0||$7,662||$0|
Steve Watson is the London based writer and editor for Alex Jones’ Infowars.net, and Prisonplanet.com. He has a Masters Degree in International Relations from the School of Politics at The University of Nottingham in England.