Author Topic: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?  (Read 50333 times)

Snaketoz

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #105 on: June 11, 2021, 12:18:29 PM »
Laws are a product of politics.  Calling them "politically motivated" betrays a deep ignorance over what's going on and how things work.
I don't believe that post means what you intended.

jaxoNOLE

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #106 on: June 12, 2021, 01:21:25 AM »
?  What gives a political party in one state the right to re-write the law of the land we've had for 232 years?


The Constitution.

The legislasture's job is to write laws.

What's next?  Complaining about pedestrians using sidewalks?
The "legislasture's" of states can't amend the Constitution of the country.

The Constitution--specifically the first amendment, here--applies to government regulation or limitation of free speech. A law against censorship by private companies may well infringe those companies' rights, which the pending litigation will resolve. But it is not a constitutional violation on first amendment grounds.

Quote
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.

Shall make no law abridging freedom of speech. Does the right of a private company or citizen to suppress another's free speech fall under that umbrella? I highly doubt it.

Adam White

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #107 on: June 12, 2021, 03:01:06 AM »
?  What gives a political party in one state the right to re-write the law of the land we've had for 232 years?


The Constitution.

The legislasture's job is to write laws.

What's next?  Complaining about pedestrians using sidewalks?
The "legislasture's" of states can't amend the Constitution of the country.

The Constitution--specifically the first amendment, here--applies to government regulation or limitation of free speech. A law against censorship by private companies may well infringe those companies' rights, which the pending litigation will resolve. But it is not a constitutional violation on first amendment grounds.

Quote
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.

Shall make no law abridging freedom of speech. Does the right of a private company or citizen to suppress another's free speech fall under that umbrella? I highly doubt it.

What are you talking about?

Unless this thread went off-piste somewhere, I thought we were talking about a law that limits the right to protest? That has nothing to do with private enterprise.

But, I totally get it if I am just missing something - we are like 8 pages in or something!

Edit: I do now see that there was reference to a law which stops companies from 'de-platforming' people, but that again is nothing to do with private enterprise limiting freedom of speech (well, it's about the government trying to stop private censorship - and it could be therefore argued that the government is acting unconstitutionally).
« Last Edit: June 12, 2021, 03:58:46 AM by Adam White »
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jaxoNOLE

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #108 on: June 12, 2021, 10:28:25 AM »
^I would argue "de-platforming" someone is absolutely a restriction of their free speech by private enterprise. I'm not sure the first amendment confers a "right to censor" to private companies, but I do agree it doesn't protect customers from de-platforming by private enterprise.

In my original post, I was merely challenging the assertion that the state legislature is attempting to "amend the Constituton." You need only look at the Second Amendment to see how much leeway states are given in limiting enumerated rights.

bl8jaxnative

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #109 on: June 13, 2021, 01:29:06 PM »
"Protest" never appears in the US Constitution.

Adam White

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #110 on: June 14, 2021, 07:29:47 AM »
"Protest" never appears in the US Constitution.

But speech does. And so does "the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

So it really kind of does, when you think about it.
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BridgeTroll

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #111 on: June 14, 2021, 06:24:14 PM »
I believe the new law addresses violence and rioting... not peaceable assembly. We have known for quite awhile now that as long as the peaceful protest was mostly peaceful then there clearly was no rioting

I think...
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WAJAS

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #112 on: June 14, 2021, 07:06:50 PM »
I believe the new law addresses violence and rioting... not peaceable assembly. We have known for quite awhile now that as long as the peaceful protest was mostly peaceful then there clearly was no rioting

I think...
Well, now we're back to what the law itself defines as rioting. If a few people are disturbing the peace in a protest of hundreds, then a riot is occurring. I'd say that makes it too easy for three people who don't support the cause to purposefully disturb the peace while being within the crowd, which would then result in the freedom of speech and to assemble of everyone else to be infringed.

There's a line you have to make there of course, but I think this law is too limiting.

jaxoNOLE

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #113 on: June 14, 2021, 10:08:05 PM »
I believe the new law addresses violence and rioting... not peaceable assembly. We have known for quite awhile now that as long as the peaceful protest was mostly peaceful then there clearly was no rioting

I think...
Well, now we're back to what the law itself defines as rioting. If a few people are disturbing the peace in a protest of hundreds, then a riot is occurring. I'd say that makes it too easy for three people who don't support the cause to purposefully disturb the peace while being within the crowd, which would then result in the freedom of speech and to assemble of everyone else to be infringed.

There's a line you have to make there of course, but I think this law is too limiting.

The issue with this law, in my opinion, is that it allows a few violent lawbreakers to color otherwise peaceful protestors as "co-conspirators." Of course, this is all conjecture until we see the law applied in practice. I think the concerns expressed here about the law are valid; I'm not sure it was needed legislation; but I don't think it's a vast sinister conspiracy to gut our first amendment rights. If the application of the law proves otherwise, then it should be struck down.

One thing I am clear on: This law was more a love letter from DeSantis to his base than a pressing policy need. But hey, that's politics.

Adam White

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #114 on: June 15, 2021, 02:53:28 PM »
I believe the new law addresses violence and rioting... not peaceable assembly. We have known for quite awhile now that as long as the peaceful protest was mostly peaceful then there clearly was no rioting

I think...

But, if a person is peacefully protesting and some other person or persons starts 'rioting', the peaceful protestor can be arrested and prosecuted for 'rioting' under this law (or so it would seem). That's the issue. I don't think anyone who has commented on this thread is defending the right to riot.
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Shine

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #115 on: June 20, 2021, 08:17:47 AM »
Read this bill a couple of times and could not see a place where simply standing or being in the area of a “riot” would constitute cause for arrest.  It appears to me this law sets new penalties for engaging in criminal activities as part of a riot Also, under a general category of laws collectively termed “riot act,” the courts have found that law enforcement may temporarily dismiss your right of assembly if the situation is or is about to decay into a disturbance or “riot.”  So, the idea that your rights of assembly can be put aside during unrest is an old, not new concept.  Would like to see those who believe this law would sweep up innocent bystanders in a criminal arrest to indicate the language in the law that does this.  I honestly would like to understand the sections of this law that are a problem.  Many Thanks.

Adam White

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #116 on: June 20, 2021, 10:06:48 AM »
Read this bill a couple of times and could not see a place where simply standing or being in the area of a “riot” would constitute cause for arrest.  It appears to me this law sets new penalties for engaging in criminal activities as part of a riot Also, under a general category of laws collectively termed “riot act,” the courts have found that law enforcement may temporarily dismiss your right of assembly if the situation is or is about to decay into a disturbance or “riot.”  So, the idea that your rights of assembly can be put aside during unrest is an old, not new concept.  Would like to see those who believe this law would sweep up innocent bystanders in a criminal arrest to indicate the language in the law that does this.  I honestly would like to understand the sections of this law that are a problem.  Many Thanks.

I got this bit from the FL Senate summary:

Defining the third degree felony offense of riot, which a person commits if he or she willfully participates in a violent public disturbance involving an assembly of three or more persons, acting with a common intent to assist each other in violent and disorderly conduct, resulting in:

Injury to another person;
Damage to property; or
Imminent danger of injury to another person or damage to property;

As I read this, one need only 'willfully participate' in a 'violent' public disturbance which involves three or more people who are acting with a comment intent...

So if you are at a protest that becomes violent, you can be convicted of 'rioting'. As the statute appears to be written, it would not require the prosecutors to prove you did anything other than willfully participate in a public disturbance that became violent. You don't actually have to commit any violence yourself.

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bl8jaxnative

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #117 on: June 20, 2021, 10:51:12 AM »


But, if a person is peacefully protesting and some other person or persons starts 'rioting', the peaceful protestor can be arrested and prosecuted for 'rioting' under this law (or so it would seem). That's the issue.


As long as police are doing what they're obligated to do, announce loudly and repeatedly, that the crowd is to disperse, there is no problem.  At that point it's a riot.  If you don't want to be in the riot, leave.

Shine

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #118 on: June 20, 2021, 12:33:08 PM »

As I read this, one need only 'willfully participate' in a 'violent' public disturbance which involves three or more people who are acting with a comment intent...

So if you are at a protest that becomes violent, you can be convicted of 'rioting'. As the statute appears to be written, it would not require the prosecutors to prove you did anything other than willfully participate in a public disturbance that became violent. You don't actually have to commit any violence yourself.



I see your concern here.  However, the term 'willfully participate' would exclude by-standers and those not a party to criminal activity.  "Willful," as a legal term generally means your actions come to voluntary and intentional participation in a crime.  And, to be proven guilty of a criminal act, the burden of proof is a high standard and "beyond a reasonable doubt."  Lets not forget, that long before this law came to be, once law enforcement orders a crowd to disperse in accordance with law, those that remain can be charged with a crime and arrested.

Adam White

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Re: New 'Anti-Mob' law, is it unconstitutional?
« Reply #119 on: June 20, 2021, 02:30:31 PM »

As I read this, one need only 'willfully participate' in a 'violent' public disturbance which involves three or more people who are acting with a comment intent...

So if you are at a protest that becomes violent, you can be convicted of 'rioting'. As the statute appears to be written, it would not require the prosecutors to prove you did anything other than willfully participate in a public disturbance that became violent. You don't actually have to commit any violence yourself.



I see your concern here.  However, the term 'willfully participate' would exclude by-standers and those not a party to criminal activity.  "Willful," as a legal term generally means your actions come to voluntary and intentional participation in a crime.  And, to be proven guilty of a criminal act, the burden of proof is a high standard and "beyond a reasonable doubt."  Lets not forget, that long before this law came to be, once law enforcement orders a crowd to disperse in accordance with law, those that remain can be charged with a crime and arrested.

Maybe. But the way it is written, one need only willfully participate in a violent demonstration - not commit violence. If you're participating in a peaceful demonstration that becomes violent, you could theoretically be charged with a crime.

As far as your second issue is concerned, that has been a standing issue for civil libertarians. Law enforcement should not have the right to stop peaceful protest and be able to disperse people. But they do. And the problem, of course, is that charges may be dropped, but that is after being silenced, arrested and traumatised. And possibly after spending money for bail or a lawyer (for example). These sorts of laws work to stop or hinder the exercise of free speech.
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