7/7/15 Banning the First Amendment
It’Â€Â™s with great irony –Â€Â“ no, wait, it’Â€Â™s with great alarm that days before the 4th of July, a judge launched an attack on constitutional rights.
The First Amendment guarantees freedom of religion, freedom of speech, a free press, the right of the people to peaceably assemble, and the right of the people to petition the government for the redress of grievances.
Mahon ordered a ban on â€œDemonstrations or dissemination of materials that degrade or call into question the integrity of the Court or any of its judges.â€ His ban includes area sidewalks near the courthouse. Violators â€œmay be found in criminal contempt of Court.â€
More than 30 years ago, the Supreme Court ruled [in United States v. Grace] that courthouse sidewalks are public forums available for citizen protest. The high court observed that courthouse sidewalks do not carry any special status not found on any other sidewalk. Hereâ€™s the best part. The Supreme Court ruled in favor of citizens carrying signs and handing out leaflets on sidewalks of the Supreme Court.
How did someone who opposes constitutional protections ever become a judge. Worse — a chief judge?