DOJ and FBI warn of prosecutions for "anti Islam" speech
FREE SPEECH IN TENNESSEE?
Some days ago I saw a news story about an event to be held on Tuesday, June 4, at the Manchester-Coffee County (Tennessee) Conference Center. "Public Disclosure in a Diverse Society" was sponsored by the American Muslim Advisory Council of Tennessee - a 15-member board that was formed two years ago when the Tennessee General Assembly was considering legislation that would restrict those who embrace Sharia Law, which is followed by Muslims. (For more info on Sharia Law click here.)
Speakers for the event were Bill Killian, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee, and Kenneth Moore, special agent in charge of the FBI's Knoxville Division. The intent of the meeting was to warn, or better said, intimidate those who have, in the eyes and ears of some in government (and presumably in the mosques), crossed a line in their speech both against and concerning Islam. I wonder when the Feds are going to stand up for Christians? Don't hold your breath on that one.
Pamela Geller of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, who also co-founded Stop Islamization of Nations (SION) with Robert Spencer of Jihad Watch, has endorsed a rally for free speech on June 4 in Manchester, Tennessee, in protest of what she described as "anti-free speech comments" by the DOJ and FBI officials. Geller stated, "We will fight you on this every step of the way... This is Sharia enforcement, and we are not going to stand for it."
Killian and Moore were set to provide input on how civil rights are likely being violated by those who post inflammatory documents targeting Muslims on social media. (Note: I wonder how they define "inflammatory.") However, several hundred protesters appeared at the Manchester meeting, sang God Bless America, recited The Pledge of Allegiance and provided enough noise that reportedly Killian and Moore were at times drowned out forcing them to cut the scheduled Q&A down to just two questions. As Killian began what was described as a "dry" delivery of information about hate crimes, civil rights and the federal laws that prescribe violations and penalties, he was greeted with shouts of "traitor," "serpent," and calls to "resign" or "go home." One protester's sign read: "In America, you are free to practice your religion, and I am free to insult it."
Protesters crowd into the Manchester-Coffee County (Tennessee) Conference Center.
Todd Starnes, of Fox News.com and Town Hall.com has done a terrific job reporting on stories having free speech implications for Americans, particularly Christians. He's done a stellar job again covering this event. I encourage you to carefully read Starnes' article here.
There is much more to be said on this issue and for the sake of getting this news to our subscribers I won't attempt to write it all here. Suffice to say there can be little doubt that some in Washington are more interested in political correctness that fits a very specific mold and serves what can only be described as a pattern promoting Islam than in protecting the cherished protections of our First Amendment. As Congresswoman Michele Bachmann told me last December, the First Amendment doesn't protect only that which is accepted speech but actually assures that ideas that are outside the mainstream and that may be repulsive are allowed as well. It would appear that the most powerful and potentially suppressive forces in our government do not agree.