Events of just last week reveal a full-on assault on the First Amendment. Since it seems our government has forgotten, the First Amendment reads:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
There are no exceptions in the text, but in practice, more and more often our government only applies the First Amendment when convenient.
"Free Exercise of Religion" – EXCEPT for Muslims. Last week a Muslim-American toddler was removed from an airplane for being on the no-fly list. And this is just one of many recent policies unjustly targeting Muslim-Americans, from racist law enforcement training materials, to surveillance in Mosques, to prosecution under material support for terrorism laws. Even the New York Times has published commentary on the "Separate Justice System" for Muslims.
"Freedom of Association" – EXCEPT with dissenters, as evidenced by the Storm Trooper-esque police force that literally beat back peaceful protesters at Chicago's NATO meeting:
Some among the hundreds of officers repeatedly struck protesters with police batons
- James Bamford: State Department and Wikileaks “Alice in Wonderland”
- Jim Risen at the National Press Club: Democracy Cannot Survive Without Aggressive Journalism
- Prosecute Jose Rodriguez
- Spypocrisy: U.S. to Use Technology in Crackdowns on Dissent (in other countries)
- U.S. Filmmaker Laura Poitras Repeatedly Detained at Border: She Has Filmed Three of My NSA Clients
- Left Behind: What We Lost in Iraq and Washington, 2009-2012
- The Truth About the Espionage Act Prosecution Against Whistleblower John Kiriakou
- Obama Indicts Sixth Whistleblower Under the Espionage Act
- History & Truth in Progress: Shady Companies Wiretap Us For NSA and Britain Imitates U.S. Snooping