Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Consternative Contradictions Part 2: Selective Anger at Judicial Activism (aka The Constitution Doesn’t Say a Fucking Thing About Obscenity)

By “Pintface” Pete Bogs/BogsBlog

A federal appeals court has struck down an FCC rule that imposes large fines on media outlets that broadcast profanity. Calling the rule “vague,” the court said such material “should be completely protected under the First Amendment.” Shit yeah!

This is an issue that puts staunch Constitutional consternatives at odds with themselves. They often claim “activist judges” keep law-abiding Americans from having firearms (to which, they believe, the Second Amendment gives them unfettered access) and otherwise “legislate from the bench.”

Yet, they overwhelmingly support court-based prohibitions on speech they find offensive. This, even though the First Amendment does not specifically prohibit “obscenity” and is written so broadly as to allow myriad things people may find objectionable:

"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."

How could a court that laid out standards for what constitutes unprotected speech ("obscenity") – which ultimately led to the FCC rule which has now been quashed – be considered anything but activist? Or for that matter, a court which ruled corporations have the same rights as individuals under the First Amendment? Consternatives, where’s your outrage?

Consternatives certainly are not alone in their opposition to broadcast profanity; many people, including most parents, probably support such restrictions. Nor are they alone in believing broad gun rights are supported by the Constitution. But this “activist court” nonsense is all them.

Activist judges are a consternative construct – a label, like “liberal,” that these hypocrites can pull out when convenient and use to their political advantage among the weak-minded. Fucking assholes!


boneman said...

is it "pick and choose"?

The "censorship" may be within some google systems, Pete.
Some of us are leaving comments and they disappear from view after we leave.


Not only that, but occasionally, some of us lose our whole sites...as in no access to them to add to or edit or, in some cases, even read.
If one complains bitterly, they sometimes give parts back.
But, not always.

Jack K. said...

Thanks for citing the first amendment. The second amendment can be read here.

The idea of automatic weapons has also been included in the ban on arms.

Do you recall the comment made by Abbie Hoffman during the Chicago Seven Trial? When asked about shouting fire in a crowded theater when there was no fire, his response was, "FIRE!!!". He certainly was expressing his rights. The judge was not amused.

boneman said...

well, who is to say what has been at the heart of the constitution, anyway?
Washington almost refused to sign it because he feared it would be a yoke upon future generations who would have to argue with "ghosts" to have anything overturned.
So...oil on your coastline, yet, sir?
I got shellacked by a Louisiana resident because I used the event as edgy comment to stop people from a totally disrespectful diplay of cruelty against a child with an unbelievablt strange cleft.

Not saying I was wrong or right, but, am saying I shall choose my words more carefully in the future.

Pete Bogs said...

boney - No oil yet. I have turned comment moderation on to thwart the Asian spammers you've been seeing here for a while.

We can argue about the intended meaning of the Constitution and its amendments; I just believe we each need to be consistent.

Jack - I knew about that quote, but didn't know it was related to Abbie Hoffman. That example is often used to explain why SOME restriction of speech is necessary. I think all reasonable people can agree that yelling something incendiary (pun fully intended) like that is problematic. There is a real potential for HARM to other people in such a reckless act. Other speech might make people uncomfortable, but that doesn't make it harmful. We should be civil to one another, and mindful when kids are around, but we must acknowledge that the First Amendment is written pretty broadly. Whereas, the Second gives specific conditions (which the NRA continues to ignore). If one claims to be a Constitution-based consternative, one must address the disconnect between the wording of the amendments and their own personal beliefs.

Cosmic Navel Lint said...

Speaking of general ignorance of the contents of the US Constitution...

Area Man Passionate Defender Of What He Imagines The Constitution To Be

November 14, 2009 | ISSUE 46•26 ISSUE 45•46

ESCONDIDO, CA—Spurred by an administration he believes to be guilty of numerous transgressions, self-described American patriot Kyle Mortensen, 47, is a vehement defender of ideas he seems to think are enshrined in the U.S. Constitution and principles that brave men have fought and died for solely in his head.


Pete Bogs said...

CNL - The Onion is brilliant. I like this recent one:

Repeal Of 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' Paves Way For Gay Sex Right On Battlefield, Opponents Fantasize