Video: Hey, let’s pass a bill banning crosshair symbols or something

posted at 6:25 pm on January 10, 2011 by Allahpundit

This moronic story was making the rounds last night on Twitter, with some people tweeting nervously, “Is that legal?” Why, er, no. Even given the limitation suggested by Brady — he wants to make the symbol illegal as applied to federal officials, not necessarily illegal in all circumstances — he’d almost certainly be laughed out of court. Here’s the leading precedent on threatening politicians. It comes from an anti-war rally in the 60s, where a speaker said the following to laughter from the crowd: “They always holler at us to get an education. And now I have already received my draft classification as 1-A and I have got to report for my physical this Monday coming. I am not going. If they ever make me carry a rifle the first man I want to get in my sights is L. B. J.” The money passage from the Court’s (very short) per curiam opinion:

But whatever the “willfullness” requirement implies, the statute initially requires the Government to prove a true “threat.” We do not believe that the kind of political hyperbole indulged in by petitioner fits within that statutory term. For we must interpret the language Congress chose “against the background of a profound national commitment to the principle that debate on public issues should be uninhibited, robust, and wide-open, and that it may well include vehement, caustic, and sometimes unpleasantly sharp attacks on government and public officials.” New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, 376 U.S. 254, 270 (1964). The language of the political arena, like the language used in labor disputes, see Linn v. United Plant Guard Workers of America, 383 U.S. 53, 58 (1966), is often vituperative, abusive, and inexact. We agree with petitioner that his only offense here was “a kind of very crude offensive method of stating a political opposition to the President.” Taken in context, and regarding the expressly conditional nature of the statement and the reaction of the listeners, we do not see how it could be interpreted otherwise.

In other words, to be locked up for using threatening language, you have to mean what you say. If Brady’s crosshairs bill doesn’t make that intent requirement exactingly clear, the bill’s probably dead on arrival in court; even if it does make that clear, then, as Kelly suggests, there’s no need to single out crosshairs or another symbol for special punishment. The issue would simply be whether a jury finds, based on whatever language or symbols he used, that the threatener wanted his threat carried out. But then, to take this idiotic bill seriously as a legal matter is to miss the whole point here. Brady doesn’t care about crosshairs; he’s using this as a way to keep pushing the media narrative that Palin’s midterms crosshairs map “targeting” Giffords is somehow responsible for Loughner’s killing spree. That map isn’t remotely illegal per the blockquote above and Brady surely knows it, but he wants to keep this Palin/tea party storyline going vis-a-vis the murders. Kelly kinda sorta accuses him of that too, wanting to know why he’s so worried about crosshairs right now when there’s zero connection between that symbol and Jared Loughner. Answer: Because he wants there to be a connection. And this is a way to create one.

I really do hope that Brady introduces this bill, though, and that Boehner brings it up for a vote. I’m dying to see how many “progressives” are ready to make symbols off-limits for First Amendment protection in the interest of scoring a point on Sarah Palin. Exit quotation from Ace’s co-blogger DrewM: “Liberals were aghast Ari Fleischer suggested ppl ‘watch what they say’. Now they demand we watch what clip-art we use.”



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That was Alec Baldwin who did that, on Conan’s show, in 1998. The videos of it showing up online were immediately scrubbed by those on the Left. Goebbels would approve.

Del Dolemonte on January 10, 2011 at 7:29 PM

I know. I remember it, and still want to puke when I think about it.

Fighton03 on January 10, 2011 at 7:34 PM

Maybe I missed something, but after reading Mrs. Malkin’s column today I think if we we outlaw all the “hate speech” the Leftists claim to be against, the Leftist won’t be able to speak at all.

oldleprechaun on January 10, 2011 at 7:33 PM

yep. But then if these azzclowns have to shut up what would we do for a good laugh?

Fighton03 on January 10, 2011 at 7:35 PM

Wasn’t that Zero’s GPA at Hahvahd ?

viking01 on January 10, 2011 at 7:23 PM

With the investigative firepower of the MSM aimed at Joe the Plumber and Sarah Palin’s trash cans, it looks like we’ll never know.

Cicero43 on January 10, 2011 at 7:36 PM

Message from Scott Gifford (brother-in-law of the Giffords) from the International Space Station:

“As I look out the window, I see a very beautiful planet that seems very inviting and peaceful,” he said. “Unfortunately, it is not.”

“These days, we are constantly reminded of the unspeakable acts of violence and damage we can inflict upon one another, not just with our actions, but also with our irresponsible words,” he said.

Ya know, I love our astronauts but………WHAT IRRESPONSIBLE WORDS CAUSED THIS PSYCHO TO GO ON A SHOOTING RAMPAGE!!!!!!!!!

David2.0 on January 10, 2011 at 7:37 PM

Where you and I might carry around a pocket-sized copy of the Constitution, left-wing political operatives carry with them a pocket edition of a text known only as “The Protocols of the Elders of the Democrat Party.”

Very few outside their elitist circles have ever seen this text. However, I have. And I am here to inform you that it contains the following passage:

“To maximize your hold on power, tell the People that an evil enemy is in their midst. Tell them that this evil enemy – led by a beautiful, athletic yet bespectacled woman who rides upon an antlered beast of the tundra – desires first and foremost to capture their children and harvest their blood to magically turn it into oil so that the woman and her fanatical followers can power their SUVs and off-road vehicles and chain saws and bear traps. Tell the People to plug their ears with wax and place duct-tape over their eyes when the bespectacled woman appears on TV, lest she seduce them with her comeliness and twangy siren’s song of life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness and other such things that we, the Elders, most vehemently oppose.”

That’s just a sample. I’ll offer more passages later, as warranted.

FlameWarrior on January 10, 2011 at 7:38 PM

Why not just ban breeding between Democrats…?

Seven Percent Solution on January 10, 2011 at 6:56 PM

Being so fond of abortion, its a wonder they’re not extinct.

Greed on January 10, 2011 at 7:41 PM

I think if we we outlaw all the “hate speech” the Leftists claim to be against, the Leftist won’t be able to speak at all.

oldleprechaun on January 10, 2011 at 7:33 PM

It doesn’t stop at speech with the left, they want to go all the way and include hate thought. They get away with assigning blame and motivation to the right but want to ban the right from reciprocating.

fourdeucer on January 10, 2011 at 7:42 PM

It’s starting to make sense what the left is up to. Calls for banning anything that might drive one of their liberal clowns to snap. They don’t want to protect society here, folks. It is self preservation at this point. We wouldn’t want to bruise too many of Barry’s follower’s egos, would we? To quote the immensely over intelligent Barry 0bama: “Get in their faces”, folks.Keep that “boot to the throat” of our “enemies”.

ndanielson on January 10, 2011 at 7:43 PM

I wouldn’t necessarily use crosshairs or targets anyway to denote Dems in need of defeat.

This symbol, I find, is far more descriptive: ☭

TXUS on January 10, 2011 at 7:43 PM

Exit quotation from Ace’s co-blogger DrewM: “Liberals were aghast Ari Fleischer suggested ppl ‘watch what they say’. Now they demand we watch what clip-art we use.”

I’ve had that quote running through my head all day, too. The irony is ridiculous.

nukemhill on January 10, 2011 at 7:45 PM

“If they bring a knife, we bring a gun” – RIGHT ON Obama. In famous Harry S. Truman fashion: “Give’m Hell”.

Posted By: Kevin | June 16, 2008 at 06:48 PM

Poster on Politico after Obama tried to spur violence against the GOP.

CWforFreedom on January 10, 2011 at 7:45 PM

This symbol, I find, is far more descriptive: ☭

TXUS on January 10, 2011 at 7:43 PM

Good stuff.

Dopenstrange on January 10, 2011 at 7:46 PM

Logic never escapes liberals. A shooting that wasn’t influenced by the use of cross hairs is reason to ban the use of cross hairs. Who can argue with such logic?

Sane people, that’s who.

xblade on January 10, 2011 at 7:49 PM

Be still my heart, FRUM has weighed in on this!!!!

Palin failed to appreciate the question being posed to her. That question was not: “Are you culpable for the shooting?” The question was: “Having put this unfortunate image on the record, can you respond to the shooting in a way that demonstrates your larger humanity? And possibly also your potential to serve as leader of the entire nation?”

My head is going to explode. Why does Palin have to say anything about her target map when there have been target maps for years? Frum is obsessed with Palin.
I wanna be sedated until all this BS is over. What a travesty of integrity. Ugh.

NTWR on January 10, 2011 at 7:49 PM

These Liberal morons are going to regret this plan; everything is saved these days you effing idiots.

Keemo on January 10, 2011 at 7:12 PM

+10. Only thing is, if they get control of the net like they want…they are already trying to scrub a bunch of stuff in this case.

Chewy the Lab on January 10, 2011 at 7:49 PM

FlameWarrior on January 10, 2011 at 7:38 PM

Whomever wrote The Protocol is a damn fine writer. ;-)

TXUS on January 10, 2011 at 7:52 PM

Its hilarious to watch the Left react to this stupid innocuous map that was probably seen by a few thousand people as worse than a billion angry Al-Qaeda statements demanding our deaths.

Speedwagon82 on January 10, 2011 at 7:53 PM

Be still my heart, FRUM has weighed in on this!!!!

Palin failed to appreciate the question being posed to her. That question was not: “Are you culpable for the shooting?” The question was: “Having put this unfortunate image on the record, can you respond to the shooting in a way that demonstrates your larger humanity? And possibly also your potential to serve as leader of the entire nation?”

And her answer should be (drum roll) “STFU u big baby. And quit using fragmented sentances/s.”

Chewy the Lab on January 10, 2011 at 7:53 PM

America has what has to be some of the most seriously inept “leaders” in its history. We need to ratchet up the rhetoric and draw these diseased clowns into the light of day. Remove them from society. Mere words and pictures compel murderous clowns to act? I say draw them out. Freedom isn’t free, and freedom is not negotiable.

ndanielson on January 10, 2011 at 7:54 PM

This moronic story was making the rounds last night on Twitter…

Morons everywhere are outrageously outraged and offended.

‘Sub-moronic’ would be a better adjective.

Midas on January 10, 2011 at 8:01 PM

I think if we we outlaw all the “hate speech” the Leftists claim to be against, the Leftist won’t be able to speak at all.

oldleprechaun on January 10, 2011 at 7:33 PM

The ban won’t apply to them, though. It’s not hate speech when a lib says it, you see.

Midas on January 10, 2011 at 8:03 PM

Ya know, I love our astronauts but………WHAT IRRESPONSIBLE WORDS CAUSED THIS PSYCHO TO GO ON A SHOOTING RAMPAGE!!!!!!!!!

David2.0 on January 10, 2011 at 7:37 PM

Does it matter? The left will put out there whatever they want. Whatever fits their narrative. Whatever they have to, to spin wins back in their direction. And they do it with the blessings and help of a compliant media.

Maybe some on the left would do well for themselves to know, it doesn’t come from the right, so much as from their own side. A kindly reminder of that…..

http://michellemalkin.com/

capejasmine on January 10, 2011 at 8:07 PM

The sad reality is that this kind of attack works. People hear it, believe it, and repeat it, without any further critical thought. And those people will always be reached by such inflamatory leaders. And they will consider themselves enlightened for their ‘caring’ position. They will shower you with scorn if you try to correct them. And they will willingly sell your rights away for a bowl of slop as you get frog marched off to jail.

AnotherOpinion on January 10, 2011 at 8:07 PM

Let ban Targets, the Department Store Chain.

bayview on January 10, 2011 at 8:13 PM

Brady’s district includes Philadelphia, which should be banned before anything else.

Emperor Norton on January 10, 2011 at 8:14 PM

How about we ban hair brained congress people who seek to exploit a non-political event for their own advantage.

chickasaw42 on January 10, 2011 at 8:15 PM

capejasmine on January 10, 2011 at 8:07 PM

I was asking a rhetorical question.

I understand what the Left will do in these situations. But a freakin’ astronaut falling for the false meme???? Without any proof whatsoever? I guess I just expected more from a guy smart enough, disciplined enough, and reasonable enough to make to freakin’ space on the shuttle!

Then again, there WAS that female astronaut who put diapers on during a road trip to stalk her lover’s new girlfriend…….

David2.0 on January 10, 2011 at 8:25 PM

Ya know, I love our astronauts but………WHAT IRRESPONSIBLE
WORDS CAUSED THIS PSYCHO TO GO ON A SHOOTING
RAMPAGE!!!!!!!!!

Being an astronaut doesn’t preclude one from being an arsehole.

spinach.chin on January 10, 2011 at 8:32 PM

I have a problem with any bill of this type. What is considered a threatening symbol? Who decides what symbols are threatening? If it is legal to set fire to, stomp on, and urinate on the United States Flag then I would think a bill of this type would be a violation of the First Amendment also.

old war horse on January 10, 2011 at 9:07 PM

Frum is obsessed with Palin….

NTWR on January 10, 2011 at 7:49 PM

He wishes he was half the man…

TugboatPhil on January 10, 2011 at 9:13 PM

profitsbeard on January 10, 2011 at 6:50 PM
bayview on January 10, 2011 at 8:13 PM

It’s name reads ‘Target’ but it is pronounced ‘Targay’.

BTW does this mean we have to get rid of registration and crop marks in printing, too? They are used to ensure the centering of print and color separation… so if any politician wants to get something printed, they better be doing it on their own PC’s printer and NOT getting it professionally done, just in case.

And, really, shouldn’t they be hand-drawing all their artwork and not using freebie images from the ‘net along with common type symbols? Wouldn’t that be great? Then make politicians have to hand them out on street corners, themselves, so there are no intermediaries that just might mix up the messaging… that means get rid of their staff, too, because the human error element just would lead to lazy work and handing it over to professionals… better safe than sorry!

Really why should we worry about a fundamental liberty when you get NO SECURITY AT ALL in return?

ajacksonian on January 10, 2011 at 9:15 PM

For political map-markings, I suggest:

Republican districts – a conventional incandescent bulb.

Democratic districts – This

ReagansRight on January 10, 2011 at 9:17 PM

I predict the cross will be called a threatening symbol… oh wait, it is already an offensive symbol that makes people feel so bad they must remove every public instance of it.

AnotherOpinion on January 10, 2011 at 9:30 PM

Megyn <3
So amazing <3

This bill? Ugh.

lansing quaker on January 10, 2011 at 10:21 PM

yep. But then if these azzclowns have to shut up what would we do for a good laugh?

Fighton03 on January 10, 2011 at 7:35 PM

I don’t know about youuu, but I can order some Red Skelton DVDs and enjoy me some blessed silence from the left end droolers whilest still laughing my bohunkus off.

Whatta ya think?

44Magnum on January 10, 2011 at 11:20 PM

I thought that one of the guidelines of the 112th congress was that bills have indicate where in the constitution the bill would be allowed.

kurtzz3 on January 11, 2011 at 2:13 AM

So… Is a check to be mark banded?…
How about an X?
0?
(arrow)—->?
Time for work or I’d continue… But you see where this goes.

RalphyBoy on January 11, 2011 at 7:29 AM

There probably are smarter people in our society to elect to office, than union thugs.

Just suggestin’

MNHawk on January 11, 2011 at 7:43 AM

This guy was truly embarassingly wackadoodle.

AnninCA on January 11, 2011 at 8:35 AM

Since crosshairs are all the rage right now, why don’t we get a political cartoonist like Michael Ramirez to draw a group of average citizens representing the Tea Party with a big, fat media crosshair on them?

The Zoo Keeper on January 11, 2011 at 9:47 AM

Here’s what we should use in the future to mark our political maps!

Buy Danish on January 11, 2011 at 10:28 AM

As usual, with politicians, it’s not about doing something; it’s about looking like you’re doing something while chipping away and constitutional liberties. Transparent and shouldn’t work anymore, but I’m not sanguine about it.

Extrafishy on January 11, 2011 at 10:29 AM

Both sides of the aisle use inflammatory rhetoric threatening death and violence so if you only condemn one side you’re a dumba*s hypocrite. The end.

Dave Rywall on January 11, 2011 at 10:38 AM

Bad news for a certain department store.

“Shop T—-t and get Bullseye Free shipping when you spend $50 on over 800,000 items”

Fallon on January 11, 2011 at 11:18 AM

Banning bullseyes and crosshairs. What’s next? Red X’s?

This guy is a murdering mad man!!!

Oink on January 11, 2011 at 11:35 AM

Extrafishy on January 11, 2011 at 10:29 AM

Bravo.

The Zoo Keeper on January 11, 2011 at 11:54 AM

Dam#…
…………If Palin had just used yellow rubber duckies to mark highly contested congressional districts…
……..none of this would have happened.

liberals are so smart////

Baxter Greene on January 11, 2011 at 11:59 AM

Here’s what we should use in the future to mark our political maps!

Buy Danish on January 11, 2011 at 10:28 AM

More people have been killed under the guise of that symbol than any other.

Inanemergencydial on January 11, 2011 at 12:02 PM

More people have been killed under the guise of that symbol than any other.
Inanemergencydial on January 11, 2011 at 12:02 PM

No kidding. But it would be hilarious if Palin (or the RNC) used peace symbols (a perfect round shape) on future maps. It would instantly silence our opponents. What would they do? Claim the peace symbol was an invitation to commit violence?

Buy Danish on January 11, 2011 at 2:00 PM

This jackwagon is the Chief Inspector Jacques Clouseau of the west. The shooter was known to the pd and yet he did nopthing. I can see why he is blaming everyone but himself. When you point fingers there are always 3 fingers pointing back at you.

ColdWarrior57 on January 11, 2011 at 3:49 PM

Just a small list of the lefts merchants of hate: Keith Olberman, Chris Matthews, Ed Schultz, Rosie O’Donnell, Bill Maher, Rachel Maddow, Katie Curic, David Letterman, Sheriff Clarence Dupnik, and many many more.

Dasher on January 11, 2011 at 5:13 PM

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