New Anti-Protest Laws Sweeping The US: Fines, Felonies & Freedom of Speech…

(upbeat dance music) – Hello, hello. Welcome back to Rogue Rocket. My name is Philip DeFranco and
today we’re gonna be talking about protests and,
specifically, the right to protest in the United States. Under the First Amendment
of the US Constitution I am guaranteed the
ability to free speech. But, also, that same amendment includes the right to peaceably assemble, which includes protesting. But, over the past three
years more than 100 bills have been introduced across
36 states to restrict protests or increase penalties for
protesters and organizers alike. And many of these tie back to the Dakota Access Pipeline
protests that you might remember making headlines back in 2016. But, if you do not remember, don’t worry. To refresh your memory
and explain why and how states are doing this,
who is being impacted and what this all means
when it comes to the First Amendment, I’m gonna hand it over to Colleen Haggerty from
the Rogue Rocket team. – [Colleen] Unites States is clearly no stranger to protests. It’s something people
have been doing here since before the Constitution was even an idea and it’s remained a
constant as society changes. Sometimes it’s part of the
reason why society changes. But, in the many decades
since the First Amendment put it in writing, the
right to protest has gotten some qualifiers. Today, when you can protest,
where you can protest, how you can protest, all of these need to follow certain guidelines
to be legally allowed. Still, the ability to
peacefully organize and speak out for your beliefs
has been repeatedly defended by the Supreme
Court as the law of the land. And if you’ve turned on the news recently, you’ve probably seen it in action. The Women’s Marches,
the March for Our Lives, these are estimated to be some of the largest protests in US history. And they’ve all taken place
within the last three years. And social media has
helped even local protests become national or
international movements. Like, the protests against
the Dakota Access Pipeline in Standing Rock, North
Dakota that went viral with the hashtag: #NODAPL. We’re gonna revisit this
movement for a minute because it’s been cited
by multiple politicians as the catalyst for writing
some of those protest laws we’re going to be talking about today. The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe started protesting in 2016
against having a pipeline built near their reservation. Thousands of people from
other tribes in other states traveled to North Dakota to join them. Hundreds were arrested
and pipeline construction was temporarily halted,
but it all came to an end in February 2017 when President Trump gave final approval for the
pipeline to move forward. Days after the final camps
at Standing Rock came down legislators over in the Oklahoma
House of Representatives voted on a set of bills
which we’re going to break down for you in the
least legalese possible. So, the first, HB 1123,
was to create penalties for actions against or
trespassing on what it calls, “critical infrastructure facilities”. And that phrase, “critical
infrastructure”, is pretty much the most important takeaway here. It’s an umbrella term covering more than a dozen types of structures. Many related to utilities including water treatment
facilities, power lines, dams, and oil pipelines. So, under this bill,
if you’re arrested for protesting near or physically being on critical infrastructure,
you can face a felony charge with a fine of up to $100,000 dollars and prison time up to ten years depending on whether
you’re found guilty of having intent to cause
damage or if you actually do cause damage. Now, the bill’s author,
former Representative Scott Biggs, fought
back on the House floor against the idea that the
bill was about protests. – Not one part of this bill prohibits any type of protesting. I know Tulsa World and
some other articles are trying to make this into a protest bill. Not one aspect of this says “protest”. – [Colleen] But he also
acknowledged the motivation behind the bill stems
from preventing protests. – Across the country we’ve seen time and time again
that these protests that have turned violent,
these protests that have disrupted the infrastructure
in those other states. This is a preventative
measure here in Oklahoma to make sure that doesn’t happen here. – [Colleen] Later, Mark
McBride, the Representative behind the second bill
got a bit more specific about his reasoning. – I think it’s just something that we want to uh, be ahead of and not let that happen
like it did in North Dakota. – [Colleen] North Dakota
being, again, the location of the Standing Rock protests. McBride’s bill, HB 2128, allows
for groups or individuals that pay protesters to be
charged with vicarious liability. Meaning they too will be
on the hook for whatever the person they paid is
found guilty of doing. Despite protests from groups including Oklahoma’s American Civil Liberties Union, both of these bills were signed into law. Of course, like we mentioned earlier, Oklahoma is not the first state to ever pass legislation around protesting. And during this timeframe
they weren’t even the only state doing just that,
but what makes Oklahoma’s law so important is what happened next. In December 2017, the American
Legislative Exchange Council, or ALEC, introduced a Model Policy inspired by Oklahoma’s new laws. If this is your first
time hearing about ALEC, that makes sense. The group’s not really
made for the public. It’s more for legislators
and business leaders. Or, as they put it, “stakeholders from across
the policy spectrum.” High profile alumni include
Vice President, Mike Pence. – I was for ALEC before it was cool. (crowd cheers) – [Colleen] And former Speaker
of the House, Newt Gingrich, who described the group’s work like this: – It is the most effective organization. Taking the ideas of federalism
and of conservatism, reaching out to legislators
across the country and developing new, sound
grassroots proposals. – [Colleen] Which means, that
they take these Model Policies and get them in front
of local politicians. An analysis from USA Today
and the Arizona Republic found nearly 2,900 bills were introduced between 2010 and 2018 based on ALEC’s Model Policies. As for this policy, the Critical Infrastructure
Protection Act, it pretty much combines
the fundamentals of the two Oklahoma laws. So, setting out penalties for those who trespass on critical infrastructure and any organizations that
conspire with those trespassers. As a model, it doesn’t
specify what the penalties are leaving that open for legislators
to fill in the blanks. According to the Huffington
Post, ALEC’s bill was sent to state legislators
along with a letter signed by fossil fuel corporations and chemical manufacturers
encouraging them to support it. The letter says there is
a recent and growing trend of individuals and
organizations attempting to disrupt critical infrastructure. Noting in particular that
energy infrastructure is, “often targeted by
environmental activists” which they say leads to
high risk environments and high cost damages. One of the examples they
include is an act of vandalism against the Dakota Access Pipeline. We don’t know how many legislators
actually saw this letter or the Model Policy itself,
but in the time since it was distributed, six other states have passed laws with similar language, calling for escalated
punishments for actions around critical infrastructure. That includes North Dakota which passed a critical infrastructure law in 2019. It’s the fourth protest
related bill the state’s adopted since Standing Rock. Three of those came before the ALEC model while the pipeline
protest was still active. Two of them increase penalties around trespassing and rioting while a third prohibited wearing anything
that conceals your face while participating in
a criminal activity. So, if you are arrested while protesting and had a hood on, you could
face up to a year in jail and a $3,000 dollar fine. That’s just one example of
some of the other protest related laws that have
been passed in this same two year timeframe that
are nor necessarily following the ALEC model. Like, Missouri, which, yes, does have a critical
infrastructure law but also passed a bill barring certain public employees from picketing. Or, West Virginia, which
passed a law during its 2018 statewide teacher’s
strike that expanded the power of authorities to
break up a protest by removing liability from officials who injure or kill someone in that process. So, in total there are
nine states that have enacted legislation,
expanding the ability to punish, or enhancing
penalties for protesting since the start of 2017. But, two of them are currently being challenged in the courts. Here’s how that went down. – These laws went into place August 1st. Uh, I was arrested on August
9th by pipeline security that had been, that was
probation and parole officers that had been contracted
to do pipeline security. – [Colleen] Activist Cindy
Spoon was one of the first people arrested under Louisiana’s critical infrastructure law
while protesting against the Bayou Bridge Pipeline. – So, we were near pipeline construction but we weren’t actually
on any of the easement or the private property
or any place that, uhm, the pipeline company feels that it owns during construction process. We were in a public
waterway and we were kind of blocked in to a smaller channel by probation and parole
officers working security and the pulled off of our boats. – [Colleen] She was charged
with felony trespassing and has since filed a
wrongful arrest suit. Others arrested with her
have joined a Federal suit that argues the legislation
is, “unconstitutional” and that it aims to, “chill,
and harshly punish speech “and expression against
pipeline projects”. The lawsuit also mentions
the involvement of the President of the Louisiana Mid-Continent
Oil and Gas Association, Tyler Gray, in the
legislative drafting process. In a statement he defended the law saying, “The intent of the critical
infrastructure bill “signed into law last year
is to protect the safety of “Louisiana’s people,
environment and infrastructure. “It is straightforward in
its scope and application “and does not infringe on an individual’s “constitutional rights.” That lawsuit is still
pending as is Cindy’s case. But, she says she continues
to participate in protests. – I continue to be involved and will continue to be involved. I’ve just been involved in
campaigns and in efforts where I’ve done it all right
and done it all by the law, by the book and just
watched how these companies, or these politicians are willing
to just change the rules. – [Colleen] The second
legal challenge happened in South Dakota and has led
to the state’s new pipeline related laws being
blocked from enforcement. In March 2019, Governor Kristi
Noem introduced two bills which created a punishable
offense called riot boosting and started a riot boosting fund. So, riot boosting is defined
as any action by a person or organization that,
“directs, advises, encourages, “or solicits any other person
participating in the riot “to acts of force or violence.” Meaning if you direct
people to join a protest happening in another city on social media and that turns into a riot,
you can get in trouble even though you weren’t physically there. The riot boosting fund
is then made up of fines collected from charging riot boosters along with a fee paid
by the pipeline owner when negotiating a new pipeline. And that fund then goes towards helping cover the cost associated
with the project and protests. Like the legislator in
Oklahoma, Governor Noem pointed to Standing Rock as her example for why the bills were needed. Particularly as South
Dakota moves forward with its own pipeline project. – It was very disruptive. There was, uh, at many
times violence occurred and was very costly for the state, the taxpayers of North Dakota and we’re working very hard in planning and have been planning for many months to ensure that that does not
happen in South Dakota as the Keystone XL Pipeline
gets built across our state. – [Colleen] These laws
received significant backlash from a number of environmental organizing groups in the state. (crowd chants) – Our voices won’t be silenced! – [Colleen] And from
South Dakota’s largest Native American tribe, the Oglala Sioux. In an open letter, the tribe banned Noem from their reservation until she, “rescind your support
for SB 189 and SB 190 “and affirm to your state and this country “that First Amendment rights
to free, political speech “are among the truths you
hold to be self-evident.” The letter also claims that Noem consulted with TransCanada,
the company behind the Keystone XL Pipeline, while
working on the legislation, but, not the tribes whose
lands would be impacted by it. Governor Noem has been open about her communication with the pipeline company. – That’s why we have been
talking to TransCanada and consulting with them. – [Colleen] But, her
office has said she spent, “considerable time” speaking
with the tribes as well. Multiple Native American activist groups are among the plaintiffs in the lawsuit against Governor Noem, led by the American Civil Liberties Union, which lead to the temporary
block of those laws from being enforced. So far, the legal trouble
hasn’t seemed to slow down other states from
introducing protest inspired or protest focused legislation. If you remember all the way
back to the beginning of this video, we mentioned
that more than 100 of these bills have been considered in 36 states over the past three years. That’s according to the International Center for Nonprofit
Laws Protest Law Tracker. So, as for all of those other bills, well, a number of them have failed to make it through the legislature
but there are more than a dozen under consideration today. Some, like West Virginia, seemingly respond to the widespread
teacher’s strikes of the past few years by either limiting the ability of
teachers to take leave or by charging fees to
cover the state’s cost of responding to demonstrations. Like the Oklahoma Bill,
which requires groups over 100 individuals looking to protest at the State Capitol building to pay a $50,000 dollar fee. There’s also multiple states attempting to impose penalties or
restrictions on protests that take place on college campuses. Legislation in California,
Wisconsin, Illinois and South Carolina calls
for suspension or expulsion for students who interfere with the, “expressive activity” or
“expressive rights” of others. President Trump also signed
an executive order this Spring on this topic basically,
ensuring schools receiving Federal grants comply with
free speech laws and policies. – Universities that want
tax payer dollars should promote free speech not
silence free speech. – [Colleen] A few months later, Trump’s Transportation
Department released a pipeline safety legislative proposal to, “specify that vandalism,
tampering with, or impeding, “disrupting, or inhibiting
the operation of a “pipeline facility are punishable by “criminal fines and imprisonment.” And by “pipeline facility”
it’s also including pipeline projects that
are under construction. The punishment includes fines
and up to 20 years in prison. Now, as you might’ve noticed,
despite promising to keep the legalese to a
minimum, which, honestly, we really did try to do,
we’ve given you a lot of direct quotes from these bills. And that’s because we
wanted to make sure to show just how specific their language is because as the one Oklahoma
Representative pointed out, his and many of the others that followed don’t explicitly mention protests at all. But given their timing,
whether it’s in the midst of pipeline construction
like South Dakota, or a teacher’s strike like West Virginia, or considering the
multiple arrests that have already been made under the
laws in Louisiana and Texas of pipeline protesters like Cindy and the multiple legislators
referring back to the events at Standing Rock, it’s clear that protest
had a lasting impact on some policy makers. Including ones in Washington, DC. And in a time of some
of the largest protests in this country’s history,
it’s worth paying attention to how the ability to exercise
that First Amendment right is being defined. – It’s with all of that
said, everything that’s been showcased, it’s time for us to
pass the question off to you. Have you previously heard
of any of these laws or do you live in states
where they’ve passed? Do you see the need for
this kind of regulation or are you more concerned
about the impact these laws can have on the right to protest? Any and all thoughts I’d love to see in those comments down below. Also, hey, while you’re at
it if you like this video be sure to hit that like button. Also, if you’re new here
and you want more of these deep dives, be sure to
subscribe and definitely tap that bell to turn on notifications. Also, if you want more news and updates, you can head over to or just follow us on any of the socials. But, with that said, thanks for watching and I’ll see you soon on the
next Rogue Rocket deep dive.

100 thoughts on “New Anti-Protest Laws Sweeping The US: Fines, Felonies & Freedom of Speech…

  • Had you heard about this before? Do you think it's a violation of your First Amendment rights? Have you or anyone you know been arrested for protesting in the US? Let us know in the comments down below…

  • A paid protester doesn't qualify as a protester imo.
    Protesting isn't a job, that just sounds like harassment with extra steps.

  • Why the hell dont people know about this did i just year that they are trying to pass a law to chatge for having more than 100 people protesting yea nope lets see how that will hold up in the supreme courts

  • When are people going to march to have "Lobbyists" punished for bribery like they should have been from the beginning.

  • Feedback! I can't say that I am able to identify the majority of state flags. It would be helpful to label flags with state names or abbreviations when the information is presented this way.

  • If it is a peaceful protest without destruction of property (already illegal, so no further laws needed), it should be protected free speech.

  • Wonder what type of lawmakers would do such an awful thing? Amazing. What happens when the majority of those in power don’t represent the majority of the people

  • Doing things "by the rules" is difficult when you start being barred from any sort of effective forms of protest.

  • Wow, 10:10 telling people to protest is a felony if it turns into a riot? Sounds like any politician that encourages people to protect we could easy get them in trouble just by rioting. I don't see any way that could be taken advantage of.

  • Wrongful arrest is obviously an abuse of authority, but there must be some point at which the rights of infrastructure owners are balanced properly against the rights of protesters. I think the main problem that people are worried about is the rise of antifa rioters. Protest peacefully all you want, but assaulting people is illegal, and anyone wearing black masks to protect the identity of these hooligans probably should be prosecuted as accomplices — just don't send some power-tripping rookie mall cops to arrest them.

  • Yet another reminder that conservative governments don't give a damn about the voices of people, only their personal interests.

  • I hope anyone who voted for these people are horrified. Anyone who supports laws like these should be thrown out of the country on treason; America exists because of protest, protest is one of the most basic principles of democracy and these people want to take that away? That's violating the constitution, that's laughing at and spitting on democracy, it's despicable and I hope these pieces of shit got paid well by the big companies because they should get nothing but hate from any true American.

    If you don't want vandalism and damage, then make laws for vandalism and damage, not laws against protest AND vanadalism and damage. Fuck people who want to cause chaos and violence and are just there to destroy stuff, but don't punish the people there to protest their cause peacefully too.

  • Who are attacking rights to protest and protestors? Who are attacking citizens 1st Amendment rights? Who are attacking individuals rights across the board? Who are attacking citizens rights to vote? And who is making corporations super citizens with extra rights beyond those of real people?
    A: Republicans. Sort of a "No Duh".

  • I'm all for peaceful protesting for change, but any protest that results in damage to property (regardless of who owns the property) and/or violence against others absolutely should be met with fines and felony charges.

  • As they make speech impossible, they guarantee that violence is inevitable. They are commercializing a new source of income for the prison industrial complex.

  • Whenever someone on the left stands against free speech I always ask "what happens when a person in a position of power decides to jail, or even kill, you for the very things you're defending today?"
    And whenever someone on the right stands against protesting I ask "What happens when the left regains power and decides to jail you for standing up to them. Exploiting the very laws Republicans legislated?"
    What no young person, on either side, can wrap their minds around today is how freedom of speech means 9/10 you're going to be defending speech that utterly sickens you. That the very idea is bigger then all the values you hold most dear. Because all those value combined don't amount up to a hill of shit if you don't have the freedom to voice them in the first place.
    If this generation is capable at all of abstract thought, and seeing the big picture whatsoever, then show me. Cause I don't see it.

  • I see a lot of people saying these laws are so "Unconstitutional" which I don't necessarily disagree with but honestly it's more than just being "unconstitutional" the laws are just wrong and in many cases stretch the legal power of the government in ways that I personally think shouldn't be the case

  • The problem with protesting is that its built on the fallacy that the people in charge aren't aware of the problem and by drawing their attention it can create change.

    the thing is, the people in charge are VERY well aware of whats going on. They don't care.

    Thats why they make these rules to make our protests illegal or legal. So we can have our "temper tantrum" and be out of the way so thry can do what they want.

  • so instead of actually addressing the issues protestors have and listening to what they have to say, let’s just punish them instead and maybe they’ll stop! ah yes, that’ll surely solve the problem!

    excuse me. what. how is this logical.

  • If we take the first amendment verbatim, then any law makes a peaceful protest a crime or limits a peaceful protest is unconstitutional. Some of the laws are unconstitutional, by my understanding, under the first amendment; but not all of them. The main issue here is how to define a peaceful protest.

  • Increased penalties for committing a crime with your face covered? How is that an anti-protest law?
    This entire article completely gleans over the fact that the reason why many of these laws have been passed since 2017 is because of violent groups like Antifa.

  • A government of the people, by the people, and for the people. No, wait! A government of the people, by the people, and for corporate benefit. No, that's not it. A government of the people, by corporate funding, and for corporate benefit. No, that's not it either. A government of corporate influence, by corporate funding, and for corporate benefit. There, that's it. Go America! land of the free, home of the brave. Nope, that's not it. America, land of the greed, home of the slave. Damn, I sure do miss the idea that idea. Maybe it was something we were supposed to continuously strive to achieve.

  • It's 100% fair to punish people who decided to go out covering their face, as if they are being arrested in first place chances are they weren't being peaceful. Though it's dodgy af to prevent public employees from protesting as well as removing the liability from police for injuring or killing people during breaking up a protest, this should be on a case by case basis and an exception to the rule not the rule itself. Although protecting public owned critical infrastructure is fine though that should exclude private businesses and you should have to be on and/or damaging said infrastructure not simply just in the vicinity of it

  • I just honestly cannot understand how politicians can idly stand beside oil companies, complaining about "violence" from protesters while those same companies rape and pillage the land to the detriment of our future.

  • Absolute horseshit, and yet people wanna support these bills and get uppity when you try to restrict anything to do with firearms and “the right to bear arms”

  • I think that people should be held accountable for destruction and THATS it. When the SJWs burned stuff at Berkeley, they should have been held accountable but they have a right to protest.

  • These laws are straightforwardly unconstitutional and un-American. Everyone involved should be ashamed. Luckily any judge presented with these laws who cares about our constitution will throw them out whether they’re liberal or conservative.

  • I dont care that CA is expensive to live in. I'm happy I live here. I dont have to deal with this stupidity. I just have to deal with less infuriating stupidity.

  • Can we just gather up all the oil barons of the world and chuck them into a big vat of burning crude? Pretty please

  • It's ironic how much 'flag-waving" there is about upholding the 2nd amendment in the broadest sense possible by the same people who support curtailing the 1st amendment rights of those who disagree with them (while, of course, complaining their 1st amendment rights are being curtailed).

  • I like the narrator but she seemed like she was told to slow down. It almost became too slow is some places, like she put a comma or pause when there was not one.
    But great story. Keep them coming

  • I think it’s interesting that there was no direct reference to the damage done by the vandals and criminals at the pipeline. I think you guys missed the mark on this one, this is clearly not protest legislation. This is legislation against vandalism and damage of critical infrastructure. Only somebody looking to do damage would have a problem with this. No wearing masks will publicly protesting? That sounds like it makes pretty good sense to me. I think it’s a very ominous indication of where some people‘s values are when they have a problem with laws against vandalism or destruction of property. That sounds like the kind of people who would wear masks, intimidate old people, attempt to define areas where free-speech is allowed, and ultimately attempt to disarm the public.

  • All of these laws are unconstitutional. The point of a protest isn’t that you play nice with whoever it is you’re protesting against. You hit them where it hurts (usually their pocket) and make it impossible for them to ignore you.

  • "The violence that occured"….you mean when the pipeline sicked dogs on the protesters and then tried to lie about it, but NPR was there recording everything?

  • When are you people going to learn? Just because some dipshits are walking around with guns, telling you that this and that are "illegal", and that you're breaking some law, doesn't make any of it real… It only becomes real when you turn around and give it credibility, when you give it credence..

    What ever laws anyone can make, let them.. At the end of the day, your rights as a living being, trump any and all laws.. Period.. And if you don't agree with that, then you're your own worst enemy, and are part of the active problem going on world wide right now.. But here right quick; if they made a law stating tomorrow that you're not allowed to eat something, what ever the reason, would you just accept that? Your answer determines how free you actually are..

  • Lots of different ideas. First, vandalism is bad and should be punished along with other acts that could cost companies/taxpayers lots of money. like hindering projects. Also, don't protesters need permits? Get permits and follow them. Punishments may be a bit excessive but depend on the damage done I suppose. Second, banning the ability of college students/colleges to hinder the free speech of others is not anti-free speech, it is pro-free speech. Third, face maks while protesting should be illegal. I see no issue with this, it helps identify those who do/would do crimes.. Fourth, KNOWINGLY encouraging riots/acts of violence should also be illegal. I love the 1st amendment and how everyone has the right to express different ideas, but REASONABLE restrictions like time, place, etc. are okay. Heck im surprised some of this isn't illegal already.

  • America is more and more turning into a fascist country. It's mostly corporate owned politicians, both left and right, but it's also Trump supporters who ignore his collusion with RUSSIA and SJWs that deplatform people they disagree with. And we can't forget the ironically named "anti" fascists (antifa) who are the most fascist people out there.

  • West Virginian slave-owners to teachers: Don't like your contracts and working conditions? Tough! Deal with it!

    Oops. Did I type slave-owners? I meant lawmakers.

  • People should not be alloud to protest when it puts public citizens in dangers. This includes blocking traffic and using any form of physical violence including throwing milkshakes at people. As well as blocking clear crosswalks.

  • Soooo I live in a place where the bill has been passed and I'm appalled that the bill even passed. My under standing is that we vote for bills in this country as a democracy but if bills like this are getting passed even under voters noses how are we even supposed to know. This upsets me. Tha k you for sharing this knowledge. 🙁

  • These laws are absolutely atrocious. They clearly aren't trying to protect their citizens, they are trying to stifle opposition to these dangerous pipelines.

  • How does this at all works with the constitution? And it seems to be all Republicans laws too. Regardless who put them up or passing them. They are making it more like unamerican

  • Sounds like entities who have no interest on ensuring the welfare of the American People and need to be cut off like Gangrene.

  • The only reason a lot of these things are happening is because you all have abused the right to protest. For a while it seemed like every other week there was a new protest over something that almost innocuous and that the meaning changed multiple times over the course of the protest. We don't need another Wall Street, we don't need another Berkeley. You all acted like idiots and forced the hand. This is extremely your fault.

  • But I thought the Republicans were the party of freedom and giving rights not taking them?
    Or at least That's what rush Limbaugh and fox news wants you to believe.

  • I'm all for passing laws for harsher punishment of people who turn a wonderful protest into a riot. But this shit is ridiculous.

  • Yall have no idea how much we need to wash corporate money out of politics.

    Democracy Dollars is a great way! #Yang2020

  • Gotta say some of this is very poorly done. The statements you make about Riot Boosting are quite wrong from reading the very legal papers you used, I get it, you want to incite people to be upset by telling lies and skewing things to make them look like they are more nefarious than they are. You can not be charged if you are on the internet and advise people to go to a protest, the wording states you must be present at the riot and you incite people to acts of violence. So no, someone sitting at home and saying "Go to this place to protest" won't get you any issue unless you say "Go to this place and carry a weapon with you so you can get violent."

    I don't even live in the states and I gotta say a lot of your protest movements are disgusting for their descents into violence so I can understand why laws like this are coming up when your belief in the right to protest includes;

    Bricking humans.
    Throwing quick dry cement on people.

    Destroying businesses.
    Destroying peoples homes.
    Destroying peoples vehicles.
    Ruining infrastructure.
    Throwing human excrement on people/police.

    Among other really horrible things. That's not "Peaceful Protest", that is just straight up feral and when innocent people are being bricked by dicks in masks and hoods, you have to admit that dropping the ninja look is going to have to happen.

    You all need to have a hard look at each other and get some maturity because all of you are acting like living in a lawless world where anything goes is an acceptable thing.

  • So, can someone please tell me how the United States can be considered a democracy any more?
    Between these anti-protest laws, voter suppression laws, acts designed to curtail incumbent governments in Michigan and Wisconsin, or the travesty that is the electoral college… Kinda difficult to see how representation works down there anymore…

  • Conservative states love the constitution, until it gets in the way of profit. You can have free speech as long as it doesn't conflict with the will of capital.

  • A government cannot bar public employees from picketing that's in direct violation of the First Amendment a government entity is taking away the right of citizens (who just so happen to work for them) to protest

  • I can understand not trespassing on private property or into construction areas, but to make it illegal to protest NEAR that boundary is incredibly unconstitutional. Those who have pass said laws should not only be banned from politics, but spend some time in federal prison as well.

  • Neat, that makes at least two constitutional rights Tennessee has blatantly denied its citizens with no consequence. I hope some day we have leadership that respects and protects our freedoms, but the outlook isn't good.

  • "…these protests were sometimes violent…"

    Yeah they were! On the part of the police / security forces!!! Jesus Christ what bullshit!!

  • Liberals DONT support free speech… until we start passing harsher laws punishing violent rioters. Then, they want to protect the first amendment when yesterday they were calling it a tool of patriarchy and white supremacy.

    Interesting, but not at all surprising.

  • So no secret, I disaprove of most of these protests, specifically because I don't think you should be allowed to go onto private property and inflict damage via obstruction or destruction. Doing it on the public property is fine in my mind, provided you are not obstructing access to the private property. If the execution of the laws follow this, I have no issue with them. Now, if this turns out to be a clever way to squash protests on public property, then we got a problem.
    You don't get to ruin other people's livelihoods because you happen to disagree with what they are doing. That's a slippery slope. Just like the Pro-lifer's shouldn't be allowed to harrass young girls at the clinics, enviromentalists shouldn't be allowed to harrass construction workers.

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