Free Speech

Mattis mush [UPDATED]

Featured image Since resigning as Secretary of Defense, Gen. James Mattis has been reluctant to criticize President Trump. No doubt, Mattis has grievances against President Trump, but his soldierly and patriotic instincts counseled against airing them. Mattis’s instincts were sound. He should have kept following them. Instead, the former Secretary lashed out at Trump this week. He said: I have watched this week’s unfolding events, angry and appalled. The words ‘Equal Justice »

The silenced majority

Featured image In 1969, during an era that’s becoming more relevant by the day, Richard Nixon introduced the term “silent majority” into political discourse. The silent majority consisted of normal people who were disgusted by the behavior of rioters and radicals (like John and me). Today in America, we have the “silenced majority.” It consists of normal people who are disgusted by the behavior of rioters and radicals. Members of the silent »

The Power Line Show, Ep 185: Facebook’s “Supreme Court”? (With a Side of the Flynn Case)

Featured image This special edition of the show features John Hinderaker joining me today as co-host, and then we have a side order of Scott Johnson at the end. Yesterday Facebook announced the creation of a 20-member oversight board that some media accounts describe as a “supreme court” to advise and in some cases rule on what kind of material can be taken down from the popular global site. Facebook founder and CEO »

Another Left-Wing Attempt to Shut Down Free Speech

Featured image Chad Richison is a billionaire who lives in Oklahoma. A liberal, he often weighs in on political issues. On March 22, he wrote an open letter to Oklahoma’s Governor, Kevin Stitt, calling on him to impose a harsh shutdown order. Richison criticized Governor Stitt and called for “bold action,” saying “We can’t afford not to act any longer, Governor.” Richison laid out a lengthy “plan of action” that included commandeering »

The limits of free Geach (4)

Featured image George Parry takes up the case of Dr. Jonathan Geach that we have followed on Power Line in previous installments of this series. Parry’s American Spectator column is “Whither Our Nanny Police State? The Case of Dr. Jonathan Geach.” Subhead: “Is it impermissible to argue for lifting the lockdown?” Thanks to the editors of the American Spectator, links from Power Line will access Spectator columns despite the paywall that might »

The limits of free Geach

Featured image Dr. Jonathan Geach is a Tennessee anesthesiologist and one of the many knowledgeable Power Line readers who has brought his professional training to bear on the current crisis. On Friday afternoon Dr. Geach wrote us to advise that he had co-written the Medium post “Eight reasons to end the lockdowns now” together with a few of his colleagues. I posted a link in our Picks. “By early Saturday afternoon,” Dr. »

Cancel this

Featured image Nekima Levy Armstrong was one of the Black Lives Matter “protesters” who shut down Amy Klobuchar’s homecoming rally at St. Louis Park High School on Sunday night, before Klobuchar shut down her presidential campaign. The rally had been called in anticipation of Minnesota’s Super Tuesday primary today. Bernie Sanders is coming on strong in Minnesota. Sanders appeared for a rally with Ilhan Omar at St. Paul’s Roy Wilkins Auditorium yesterday. »

Unconstitutional pro-union gag law challenged

Featured image California law prohibits public officials from making statements that might “deter or discourage” public employees or applicants from membership in a public employee union. The law was passed in 2017 in anticipation of the Supreme Court’s ruling that compulsory public employee union dues are unconstitutional. This California law, Section 3550, is also unconstitutional. It censors viewpoints that are critical of public employee unions on the basis of a vague and »

Free Speech Under Fire in the UK

Featured image Current cultural and political developments in the U.S. are so weird that I tend to assume we must be unique. But not so: in the United Kingdom, too, “wokeness” operates as an explicit threat to freedom. The situation is even worse there than here, in fact. The London Times reports: Police have been urged to rewrite the rules on hate crime after a judge likened a force to the Gestapo »

Ezra Levant tells them to stuff it

Featured image Ezra Levant writes: I wrote a best-selling book about Justin Trudeau in the last election. After the election, I received a letter by registered mail notifying me that I was being investigated for that book. Trudeau’s elections commissioner claimed it was an illegal campaign activity and demanded that I submit to an interrogation. So I went to Elections Canada’s Ottawa headquarters last week, where I was grilled for an hour »

Free Speech? Not In France

Featured image From France comes this disturbing headline: “French teenager in hiding after insulting Islam online.” Police have told a French teenager to go into hiding after she received death threats for insulting Islam. The 16-year-old has been advised to stay away from her lycée (sixth-form college) in southeast France after calls on the internet for her to be killed, raped or attacked. Great police protection! A 16-year-old girl is threatened with »

An Important Free Speech Victory Against the SPLC

Featured image The Southern Poverty Law Center, as Power Line readers know, is one of America’s pre-eminent hate groups. It smears those with whom it disagrees, and the media, politicians, and, in some cases, law enforcement are happy to take its hate campaign seriously. So fighting back against the lavishly funded, but utterly corrupt, SPLC is important. Happily, one organization smeared by the SPLC, the American Freedom Law Center, has taken the »

Judge changes mind in important First Amendment case

Featured image Last week, I wrote about a case in which the Fifth Circuit, in a unanimous decision, ruled that a suit could proceed against a Black Lives Matter activist for violence he didn’t commit or encourage. The police officer who brought the suit was hit in the head by a rock thrown during a BLM protest. However, he did not claim that the individual he sued, DeRay McKesson, threw the rock, »

Suit against BLM activist for violence he didn’t commit can proceed

Featured image A police officer who was hit in the head by a rock thrown at a 2016 demonstration in Louisiana sued DeRay Mckesson, the prominent Black Lives Matter provocateur who organized the demonstration. The officer did not allege that Mckesson threw the rock, that he called on anyone to throw rocks, or that he called on anyone to commit any act of violence. Yet, he sought to hold Mckesson liable for »

Fish out of water

Featured image Once upon a time, Stanley Fish was a state of the art radical professor — “a scrappy advocate of multiculturalism, affirmative-action hiring quotas, campus speech codes and openly subversive strains of post-structuralist critical theory,” to quote the view attributed to his critics by the New York Times. Fish transformed the Duke University English department into a bastion of “deconstructionism” — the view that literary texts acquire meaning only as a »

Administrative bloat and the attack on campus free speech

Featured image Almost since the start of Power Line in 2002, we have reported with dismay the descent of American colleges and universities into a leftist bastion of illiberalism. Most of our focus has been on professors, and not without reason. They are the ones who have degraded the teaching of humanities through their obsession with identify politics and disdain for Western Civilization. However, I came away from this year’s ATHENA Roundtable »

Lebron James, Useful Idiot, Part 2 [Updated]

Featured image Paul wrote earlier today about Lebron James’s ill-informed and self-interested comments on Chinese oppression of the residents of Hong Kong, and Daryl Morey’s free speech rights. One of my kids noted this lampooning of James by Barstool Sports, on Instagram. Barstool pulls no punches: “In honor of Lebron denouncing freedom of speech…” When you’re being criticized by sources as disparate as Power Line and Barstool Sports, it is probably time »