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You Have A Constitutional Right To Take Photos Of Police, Federal Court Affirms

Photographing and filming police officers in public is a constitutional right protected by the First Amendment. That’s what a federal appeals court unanimously affirmed this week in cases involving Philadelphia officers retaliating against citizens pointing cameras at them.

Slate reports that the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling was for two cases. In one, a woman named Amanda Geraci was restrained across the neck by a police officer while trying to film the arrest of an anti-fracking protester. In the second, a Temple undergraduate named Richard Fields was handcuffed and prosecuted after trying to film officers breaking up a house party.

A District Court previously had ruled that both Geraci and Fields had engaged in “conduct” only and not “expressive conduct,” and that therefore their filming wasn’t a First Amendment “freedom of speech” issue. But in Friday’s ruling, the Federal Appeals Court disagreed.

“Every Circuit Court of Appeals to address this issue […] has held that there is a First Amendment right to record police activity in public,” the judges write in their opinion. “Today we join this growing consensus. Simply put, the First Amendment protects the act of photographing, filming, or otherwise recording police officers conducting their official duties in public.”

“The First Amendment protects actual photos, videos, and recordings, […] and for this protection to have meaning the Amendment must also protect the act of creating that material.”

“We ask much of our police,” the judges write in the closing statements. “They can be our shelter from the storm. Yet officers are public officials carrying out public functions, and the First Amendment requires them to bear bystanders recording their actions. This is vital to promote the access that fosters free discussion of governmental actions, especially when that discussion benefits not only citizens but the officers themselves.”

So there you have it: police officers don’t have the right to squash free speech by ordering you to stop shooting photos of them in public.


Image credits: Header illustration based on photo by Elvert Barnes and licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

h/t John Gwillam, Facebook

IT’S ABOUT TIME!

Don’t you always hate it when Rights you believed to be self-evident truths have to work their way up the judicial chain just to be affirmed as valid?

Of course, this hasn’t yet reached The Supreme Court(!)

Who knows?

THE “REAL” SOLUTION TO JIHADIST KNIFE ATTACKS

Suarez International

“One of them had a big knife, then he came in and walked around the restaurant, I guess they just kind of stabbed anyone that they saw and knocked things on the ground and then we just hid.”

So this last weekend – mid Ramadan (but the UK authorities are adamant that has nothing to do with it) – yet another series of well coordinated attacks in London. The timing was on cue, and the technology was primitive, yet the effect was successful. The weapons were simple: Aggression, Motor Vehicles, and Knives. Unless the nanny-state wishes to now castrate the aggression out of all males, prohibit all sharp instruments in an Okinawan-like decree, and force everyone to use public transportation, the ability of the state to prevent the next one is ridiculously impossible as long as the culture that advocates such things is allowed to roam free in the west.

That last bit is out of the hands of normal people like us, yet we are the ones that will stand at the front line of the effects of the political decisions made by those in charge. And we will either stand as ready sacrifices to the death cult, or as combatants. Britain seems to have already chosen out of their self-imposed helplessness. Soon the west, and Europe in particular, will either find its warrior heart and embrace the old ways, or it will be bent over the table and given its fate.

In this article, which I am certain will upset the “martial arts” guys, I will discuss the reality of facing a jihadist with a knife bent of “stabbing anyone they see”. I will discuss “The Jihadist Vehicle Attacks” later.

So here we go –

1). Forget the fantasy of empty hand defenses:

Do not think for one minute that your secret Jujitsu or Kung Fu methods will guarantee you winning against a dedicated, motivated, young and fit jihadist armed with a big knife intent on killing you. Add to that his expectation of dying that day…add to that his accomplices, also armed with knives, and you get a clearer picture. And winning does not mean 7 out of 10 in the drills at the dojo…it means we want a solid chance at a 100% success rate because anything less means that you die. Your chances may be better if you have devoted your entire life to nothing but full contact martial arts training (and if your adversaries are unskilled)…but otherwise…unarmed against the knife is a very foolish match to go into.

2). Instead of going Jackie Chan, use a weapon:

Yes, I know…it may mean violating the rules. As I have said…and it is almost a cliche now…we live in a time of war and we must make adjustments to the reality and accept that the authorities cannot prevent these events from taking place. So if you live in a free state, carry a firearm with you – EVERYWHERE. Ignore the sign if there is one saying you cannot. If you live in a not so free state, carry a firearm with you anyway and always obey the speed limit. If you live in a country intentionally bereft of any warrior culture, see item three.

3). Always be armed no matter the rules:

“But Gabe…we live in (insert oppressed socialist state or nation here) and we can’t even buy a picture of a gun here”.

A modern, educated man with a set of nuts in his bag will always figure out a way to be armed. No guns? OK, get your own knife. Knife versus knife is a far better proposition than unarmed versus knife is it not? My God, at the very least get a big fat stick that you can claim is a cane and that you can crush skulls with. It really is not that difficult if there is courage, and a will, and a defiant heart that denies the state’s right to control your destiny.

“But Gabe, the rules say I cannot have guns, knives, sticks, anything that could possibly be used as a weapon and they are about to pass laws banning ill will”.

When you cannot live in safety, and in obedience to the established law, a learned man will happily become a scofflaw. If you disagree with that, I really have nothing for you. Sorry…good luck.

4). Learn to be violent:

This is why I am not impressed with the majority of martial arts training. Too much sport. Too much esoteric spiritual stuff. Not enough violence. We need more “martial”, and less “art” – as it were. I expect that today, the Monday after the London Bridge attack, the martial arts schools in the UK (and USA) will be filled with eager soccer moms and football dads (cricket-moms and rugby-dads?) looking for the easy solution to this problem. And they will be taught esoteric stuff intended for the “perfection of character”, or stuff developed for winning a match somewhere.

What they need is to be taught to physically destroy their opponent, crushing windpipes, smashing skulls, breaking bones. The “real karate” that so few schools even understand much less teach. But again, see item 1. I have trained in hand to hand stuff since I was ten years old and I would prefer to not face against a knife empty handed.

5). Learn preemption:

It is 2017. Are we already forgetting that there is a true social-religious-political culture living in the west…in truth invited by the west, that seeks to supplant western culture by force and attrition with its own culture? If you see a couple of strong young men, that look like they just got off the boat from Afghanistan moving aggressively toward you with knives in their hands – do we really need to have a time out to explain what their intentions are for you?

This is the time to draw and shoot each one of them to the ground, not running or hiding.

6). Keep alert:

All the weapons and willingness to violence will not help you in the least if you are asleep at the bar. The first part of all this is staying alert. Sit where you can see the exit, have your back covered or have an equally alert associate watching it. Look around constantly and know who is moving and what is happening. Don’t want to live like that you say? Well, western nations, you should have thought about that before you invited the death cult into your country, or voted for fools that did so. You live in a time of war and you will either deny it and hope you are not selected by the next jihadist, or you accept reality and prepare to meet him.

That is all. There are no secret techniques to defend against the knife by physically frail and empty handed males. It takes violence and weapons. And in that order.

recently, in London

I don’t have to know someone’s ethnicity or religion.  If they approach me menacingly with a blade, that’s it!

And The Adventure Continues, Part Siete

Well, here we are, again…

The contractor returned Thursday to close the hole in the ceiling.  He said their estimate disagreed with the material provided by the insurance company (i.e. they mentioned a repaint, but NOT closing the hole in the ceiling!)  A minimum of THREE WEEKS before they return.

We’ll see.

J., my roomie, continues to have health problems, multiple doctor appointments and physical therapy.  Next is a nerve ablation on her neck, which causes her great pain.

We’ll see.

I discontinued my auto insurance and notified the State my car is no longer on the road, pending sale or donation.  No sale or donation as of yet.  She’s still collecting spider webs…

We’ll see.

J. added me to her auto insurance as an additional driver.

We’ll see.

I’ve my own doctor appointment tomorrow, with a vascular surgeon(?!) regarding my right calf, which continues to be oversized.

We’ll see.

Money continues to be an issue.  Quelle surprise.

We’ll see.

Weather?  Today 111º.  Tomorrow 116º.  Tuesday 118º  That’s The Valley of the Sun in the Summer.  Oh, wait?  It’s not Summer, yet!  😛

We’ll see.

I will update you kind folks as I know more.

Thanks, again for your support.

THE COVERT INVASION OF THE WEST

April 21, 2017  (Suarez International)

There are cultural myths that all civilizations seem to adopt. Once they do, it is virtually impossible for them to let go of such myths, even when pursuing them is no longer viable. With the west is the myth of egalitarian inclusion. The idea that all men want the same things, that we can all get along, and that with acceptance and understanding, we can all live together in peace under beautiful rainbows.

Such a naive world view ignores the incessant jihad that the west has faced for a generation. And that jihad, both violent and overt, as well as cultural and covert.

Just this week, we not only had a Black American Jihadist shoot and kill a number of “white devils” in California, but we also had a French Policeman killed and another seriously injured in a proactive jihad ambush in Paris. It has become so common, and seemingly accepted that I will bet you cannot name all the terrorist events in the USA in the last 12 months.

Another factor in this is the west’s abject fear of being considered unfair or (gasp) racist. Even if we stop to consider that a religion or a political movement is not based on race, the language remains. And the word has power over westerners. At some point westerners, and I suspect the Europeans will be first, will have to ask themselves what is the greater danger – being called a racist or losing their civilization.

Another third cultural habit of the west is self-hatred and a deliberate ignoring of history. The self-hatred I don’t know whence it came. I will bet it has some basis in liberal-socialist thinking.

Perhaps one of the readers can comment.

But the ignorance of history is a crucial element here…specially for the young. History is rewritten to fit the modern narratives which support the other cultural habits and myths. But not knowing the real story is a problem. What would a man do, for instance, who had never been told that a hot stove will burn his hand. He would not know what he faced when coming in contact with one. Ignorant of the effects of hot steel on his hand, he would go ahead with his plans to touch it.

Islam has been on a mission to conquer and convert the world for a thousand years. At first, as shown in the video below, the methods have been via military invasion and conquest. But today, the would-be invaders are using far more subtle means. Theirs is the slippery slope of compromise and appeasement…the “cultural” and “societal” jihad that some writers speak of. And with every point of compliance from western nations, they take another small step toward their objectives. The west has helped in that mission by its policies. And if steps are not taken to change the west will lose…and it will lose by defeating itself.

So here is a history lesson. Its not very long, but it is informative.

https://youtu.be/c7y2LRcf4kc

 

Image may contain: 7 people, crowd
Just yesterday, ISIS attacked people at a Shiite shrine in Iran.  This evil is not just for Western democracies.  Of course, the  Shia Iranians have their own agenda.
It’s been estimated that 10 to 15% of Muslims worldwide have been ‘radicalized’.  While still a small minority, that’s not an insignificant number.
Islam is the fastest growing religion in the World.
This ‘problem’ is not easily solved.

Well, Here The Russians Go AGAIN!

(Yeah, right)

from my friend Jim (Old NFO @ Nobody Asked Me, in part)

Except this time it’s the French Elections…

Massive email hacks, release of data, and…

RUSSIAN HAND SEEN

Former economy minister Macron’s campaign has previously complained about attempts to hack its emails, blaming Russian interests in part for the cyber attacks.

On April 26, the team said it had been the target of a attempts to steal email credentials dating back to January, but that the perpetrators had failed to compromise any campaign data.

The Kremlin has denied it was behind any such attacks, even though Macron’s camp renewed complaints against Russian media and a hackers’ group operating in Ukraine.

Full article, HERE.

And an interesting twist, the French government has put out a warning about publishing any of the hacked material.

France’s electoral commission has ordered media not to publish contents of Emmanuel Macron‘s leaked campaign emails to avoid influencing the election.

 It warned news outlets in France that journalists could face criminal charges for publishing or republishing the material, under laws that came into effect at midnight forbidding any commentary liable to affect the presidential race.
Full article, HERE.
So once again the ‘Russians’ are at play… Or are they? Or will we ever know the real answer???
My guess is probably not. When one considers that the average 14 year old hacker in momma’s basement is capable of using these same tools, and most ‘attributable’ to Russian/Ukrainian coders, it could be anybody…
Sigh…
Of course, he’s right on the money.
I do find it interesting how the Left continues to propagate the fiction that the Russians are behind so much election fraud.  Because, after all, they would prefer a populist right-wing anti-communist with military leanings (Mr. Trump) over assorted other Leftists (Hillary, Sanders) ?
And forget the previous anti-colonialist leftist White House occupant…
Now, it’s the same in the French election.  Supporting a right-wing nationalist…
Funny, the middle-of-the-road cat won?!

Don’t Do Anything Rash! (The Adventure Continues…)

SO…

I go to see my primary doctor yesterday afternoon.  She confirms ‘yes’, I DO have a rash of undetermined origin, now permeating most of my body.  My edema in my right calf is of significant size, and has NOT diminished when horizontal.

She prescribes a synthetic corticosteroid to deal with the rash.  She is MORE concerned about the edema.

She sends me to a diagnostic center for an ultrasound of the leg.  (I must drive myself, as J. is still recovering from her shoulder surgery and cannot drive.)

It’s either this, or she admits me to the hospital.  She’s concerned I might have a blood clot(!)

So, it’s back from central Phoenix to Chandler (nearer to where I live) for the imaging.  It’s approaching 1700, but they are waiting for me. (My doc has pull!)

I wore sandals I don’t usually wear, so she could get a better look at my legs and feet (wrestling with socks and ‘Ed’ the really big shoe can be difficult when swollen.  The sandals are uncomfortable and make driving difficult.

And I cannot afford to Uber.

J. is with me for moral support and to listen to my cursing.

Finally, we find the place and I get the ultrasound.  NO CLOTS!  😛  They contact my doc, who prescribes a broad spectrum antibiotic and schedules me to return Friday @ 1300 for follow-up.  She does this all herself and makes certain she speaks with me about diet to accompany the antibiotic.  Initially, I missed her call (loud surroundings) and she called back and left a message.  Then she kept calling until she could speak with me personally.

I have a great physician!

The Good News is I picked up the meds.  The Bad News is neither is recommended for evening use.  So, another night of calamine lotion looms.

I think I received three hours of sleep.  J. has another physical therapy appointment this afternoon.  AND I TOOK MY FIRST PREDNISONE THIS MORNING!  😛

C’mon work!

Time will tell.  It’s been about two hours, and I feel slightly less itchy.  (Perhaps that’s just wishful thinking?)

I will keep everyone advised.  (No Clots – Hooray!)  😛

DRAMA IN THE SKY: Russia Flies Long-Range Bombers Off The Coast Of Alaska! For Second Day In A Row (AP)

(snooze)

How is this news?  I thought news that which is new?

I first heard about the Russians and Chinese buzzing U.S. waters back in the mid-70’s, from a good friend who was a Marine stationed aboard the Glomar [name redacted] spy ship in the early 70’s!

Ended with the Cold War? (tsch!)

It was (and is) a standard tactic ‘testing the fences’ (think Jurassic Park velociraptors) from time immemorial.

They just want to check our reaction time and methods.

They play silly games, as do we…

I’m not worried.  Aren’t Trump and Putin bosom buds, now?

(I’m going back to watching my Fail Safe, Dr. Strangelove and War Games triple-header!)

 

Is THIS That To Which We’ve Come?

I truly hope not!

A dear friend (and regular reader of this humble blog) recently attended a talk presented by the President of the Arizona Republic (newspaper).

The president outlined her personal history, then presented what was countenanced as  ‘the toxic culture that is America today’.

Summarized by my friend, as follows:

She was part of the historic decision of the paper to endorse Hillary Clinton for President, the first Democrat ever endorsed for President in the paper’s 126 year history.  She was only part of that decision.  The board, heavily conservative, many of them Goldwater Republicans, considered their decision very carefully.  They discussed the options, giving no endorsement at all, endorsing a third-party candidate, or Clinton (which they eventually did).
For them, it was never a partisan  choice, they had endorsed John Kasich in the primaries. For them, it was on their consideration of fitness for office.  They knew it was weighty decision.  They knew it would cost them business.  They knew that it would be an unpopular choice for many in a Republican dominated state.  But an endorsement of Trump was never in the cards for them.  Something I didn’t know, but was interesting to learn.
What they were unprepared for, was the volcano of ugliness that followed.  Death threats came in by the hundreds.  Targeted personally toward individuals on the board.  Things like:  We know where you live.  We know where your children go to school.  We know the license plate on your car.  We know where you park.  We are going to do to you what was done to Don Bolles.  You will die.  We will kill your family.  Hundreds of these.  Every day.
Threats came by phone, by mail, in person, via email (of course).  People attempting to sell subscriptions were spat upon, had guns brandished in their faces.  It got so bad that the Republic ceased trying to make in-person subscription sales.
One extreme right-wing Catholic group spammed her email 5000 times a day.
Her response, in part:
I was horrified.  This is America?  This is what we do to people who disagree with us politically?  I’ve had my share of political arguments.  I’ve vented anger, but I never imagined anything like this.
Thankfully, nobody was actually killed, although there were several assaults.
All over an ENDORSEMENT.  A simple statement of opinion.
It is ongoing.  She said that she now “only” gets 2-3 death threats a day.  Although, every time Trump calls the press “enemies of the people” or complains about the press, there is another spike.
One man calls every day, just to say, “I hate you and think you should die.”
This is what we’ve come to.
Well, I’m not going to be a part of it any more.  I will state my opinions, exercise my freedom of speech, but I will never again engage in behavior that dehumanizes or could be perceived as threatening to people who disagree with me.
Civil discourse begins with me.  I hope it doesn’t end there.
I’m interested in this blog’s readership response, if any.  Of course, any non-civil discourse or threats will be dealt with as appropriate.
I’ve my own opinions on the matter, which I may present at a later date.
Anyone?

 

ASM826 and Borepatch Bring Bayou Renaissance Man’s Take On The Trump Wiretap

…and ALL of ours!  (It takes a village of bloggers?  Sorry.)  🙂

Wiretapping is so 1980

When you have the power of a fully operational Stasi Ministry of State Secrets NSA collection of every phone and email, you use it. The Obama Administration didn’t need to tap the phones in the Trump Tower. They just need access to the data collection that is being performed on all of us every day.

I was going to write this up, but Bayou Renaissance Man already hit the thing out of the park. 

“Hell yes, Donald Trump was “wiretapped.” So were you, by the way. And me. From open source information shared by defectors the intelligence community was too incompetent to keep from defecting, we know that every single electronic communication we send is collected in the NSA mainframes. Every single one. And the NSA has algorithms they can use to search it. You don’t go plant a bug in Trump Tower. You wiretap the opposition party’s nominee for president by running a search through the communications that the government “incidentally” collected. And if you find something juicy, then you call up your buddy at the Post and hand it over.”

Cutting To The Chase On This Rights Thing

One of the neatest things about getting to know folks through this Internet thing (and sometimes, if one is lucky, meeting them in meatspace!) is finding folks who are one’s intellectual superior – from whom one may learn.

I’m a pretty bright guy.  Despite the fact I squandered my education and made some poor life choices.  Things are as they are.  I do appreciate the higher-educated, more erudite folks I’ve been fortunate to befriend on the Internet.  Sometimes (as in the cases of Tam, Borepatch, Brigid, Peter and others) I learn something!

This is from the magnificent Kevin Baker (of The Smallest Minority) (with whom I have been lucky enough to meet and shoot!), in part:

So I’ve cut way back posting here, but I’m still occasionally answering stuff over at Quora.  Seems a waste to let this one vanish in their bit-buckets, so here’s a question-n-answer with an associated comment thread I did recently.

The question was:

Why are guns a right in the US, meanwhile education and healthcare are not?
The question is not about whether or not the government will prevent you from having an education/healthcare. My question is about why education and healthcare aren’t considered in the constitution.

I stumbled onto it fairly early, so there weren’t many answers, but most of them talked about how the Constitution conferred rights on citizens, etc. Here’s my answer:

Oy vey. After reading the current answers (there are eight not downvoted enough to be hidden) it becomes blindingly obvious that our free “education” system has failed pretty dramatically. As one student stated “I Was Never Taught That Knowledge.”

The fundamental question is “What is a ‘Right’?”

Several people here state that education is a right, or that healthcare is a right.

No, they’re not.

While I’m not an Objectivist, I think Ayn Rand was correct when she stated:

A ‘right’ is a moral principle defining and sanctioning a man’s freedom of action in a social context. There is only one fundamental right (all others are its consequences or corollaries): a man’s right to his own life.

As others have stated, “guns” aren’t a right, the right to self-defense – protection of one’s own life – is. The right to keep and bear arms is its corollary, for if denied the tools of that defense, the right is essentially stripped.

Education? You have the right to study anything you wish. What you don’t have is the right to make someone teach you. Health care? Same thing. You have the right to take care of yourself, but not force others to care for you.

Because forcing others violates their rights.

So why is the right to arms listed in the Bill of Rights, but education and healthcare are not? Because the Constitution is a legal document that establishes the limits of power of a governing body. If the Constitution were a document that said only what government could not do, it would be infinitely long. Instead, the body of the Constitution itself lists the powers that the Federal government has, and the mechanism under which those powers are established, maintained and exercised. The Bill of Rights is a (limited) list of things that government is warned explicitly not to trifle with, and a warning that there are other such rights not so listed.

The Tenth Amendment, too, is a limit that basically says “Only powers defined here belong to the Federal Government. Everything else is a power reserved to the States or The People. Hands off.”

So of course that’s the first one that got folded, spindled, mutilated and incinerated.

So what do we gather from this? That EDUCATION and HEALTHCARE are not in the purview of the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. It’s not the job of the Federal Government to provide these things, subsidize these things, or regulate these things except as they affect interstate commerce. (A clause that has been stretched to obscene lengths ever since Wickard v. Filburn.)

It doesn’t matter if they seem to be good ideas. Those powers were not given to the Federal Government by the Constitution. They’re (as you observed) not mentioned in that document. They’re among the “powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution.” And they’re not rights.

But they are most definitely powers.

You should really visit Kevin’s blog, and read the whole post (The Smallest Minority-link)

He doesn’t post often, but when he does, it’s GOLD!

 

 

"Round up the usual suspects."

In Loving Memory…