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state of america today


This post explains the liberties guaranteed in the Bill of Rights – the first 10 amendments to the United States Constitution – and provides a scorecard on the extent of the loss of each right.  (This is an updated version of an essay we wrote in February.  Unfortunately, a lot of information has come out since then.)

First Amendment

The 1st Amendment protects speech, religion, assembly and the press:

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.

The Supreme Court has also interpreted the First Amendment as protecting freedom of association.

However, the government is arresting those speaking out … and violently crushing peaceful assemblies which attempt to petition the government for redress.

A federal judge found that the law allowing indefinite detention of Americans without due process has a “chilling effect” on free speech. And see this and this.

There are also enacted laws allowing the secret service to arrest anyone protesting near the president or other designated folks (that might explain incidents like this).

Mass spying by the NSA violates our freedom of association.

The threat of being labeled a terrorist for exercising our First Amendment rights certainly violates the First Amendment. The government is using laws to crush dissent, and it’s gotten so bad that even U.S. Supreme Court justices are saying that we are descending into tyranny.

For th full post/listing:

What country is this and what does it mean when our constitution is seen as controversial?!  How did this happen.,

“The Constitution guarantees the right to free speech, but don’t try to pass out copies of it at Modesto Junior College in California.

A student at the school who tried to pass out pocket-size pamphlets of the very document that memorializes our rights got shut down on Sept. 17 – a date also known as Constitution Day. Campus authorities told Robert Van Tuinen, who caught the whole thing on videotape, he could only pass out the free documents at a tiny designated spot on campus, and only then if he scheduled it several days in advance.”

from Brietbart:

Recently uncovered government documents reveal that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) unmanned Predator B drone fleet has been custom designed to identify civilians carrying guns and track cell phone signals.


“I am very concerned that this technology will be used against law-abiding American firearms owners,” said founder and executive vice president of the Second Amendment Foundation, Alan Gottlieb. “This could violate Fourth Amendment rights as well as Second Amendment rights.”


The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) obtained a partially redacted copy of Homeland Security’s drone requirements through a Freedom of Information Act request; CNET uncovered an unredacted copy.


Homeland Security design requirements specify that its Predator B drones “shall be capable of identifying a standing human being at night as likely armed or not” and must be equipped with “interception” systems capable of reading cell phone signals.


The first known domestic use of a drone to arrest a U.S. citizen occurred last year in the small town of Lakota, North Dakota when rancher Rodney Brossart was arrested for refusing to return six of his neighbor’s cows that had wandered on to his property. Critics say the fact that domestic drones are being used in such minor matters raises serious concerns about civil liberties and government overreach.

for full article:

OpEd from FoxNews contributor Judge Andrew Napolitano:

For the past few weeks, I have been writing in this column about the  government’s use of drones and challenging their constitutionality on Fox News  Channel where I work. I once asked on air what Thomas Jefferson would have done  if — had drones existed at the time — King George III had sent drones to peer  inside the bedroom windows of Monticello. I suspect that Jefferson and his  household would have trained their muskets on the drones and taken them down. I  offer this historical anachronism as a hypothetical only, not as one who is  urging the use of violence against the government.

Nevertheless, what Jeffersonians are among us today? When drones take  pictures of us on our private property and in our homes, and the government uses  the photos as it wishes, what will we do about it? Jefferson understood that  when the government assaults our privacy and dignity, it is the moral equivalent  of violence against us. The folks who hear about this, who either laugh or  groan, cannot find it humorous or boring that their every move will be monitored  and photographed by the government.

Don’t believe me that this is coming? The photos that the drones will take  may be retained and used or even distributed to others in the government so long  as the “recipient is reasonably perceived to have a specific, lawful  governmental function” in requiring them. And for the first time since the Civil  War, the federal government will deploy military personnel inside the United  States and publicly acknowledge that it is deploying them “to collect  information about U.S. persons.”

Did you consent to the American military spying on Americans in  America? I don’t know a single person who has, but I know only a few who are  complaining.

-It gets worse. If the military personnel see something of interest from a  drone, they may apply to a military judge or “military commander” for permission  to conduct a physical search of the private property that intrigues them. And,  any “incidentally acquired information” can be retained or turned over to local  law enforcement. What’s next? Prosecutions before military tribunals in the  U.S.?

Read more:

The Environmental Protection Agency declined to answer questions this week as the Omaha World-Herald sought to clarify whether the agency had the legal authority to conduct overflights of cattle operations to determine if cattle are pooping in streams in the Midwest.

drones assist corralling north dakota cattle rustlers

I don’t know much about bovine latrine habits, but I’ve been around enough pastures to know that cattle really aren’t that particular.

It seems to me that they let go pretty much wherever they are, stream or no.

So I think I can say with some authority, that, yes, cattle all around the Midwest are indeed pooping in streams, legally or otherwise.

That’s the kind of rugged individualists that cow herds appear to be now in face of the bullying- pun intended-cowards in the Obama administration. It’s gotten so bad that not content to rough up people, the Obama administration has to go do some environmental cow-tipping.

What’s supposed to be sport for drunk people, is now official policy