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ACLU Responds To Florida Teacher’s Anti-Gay Marriage Facebook Post

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Florida anti-gay teacher Jerry Buell was reinstated Wednesday, despite the fact that he wrote on his Facebook wall that hearing the news that same-sex marriage in New York “almost made [him] throw up.”

READ: Teacher Who Said Gay Marriage Made Him Almost Throw Up Back In Class

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Florida, which, while not representing Buell or supporting what he said, had published a statement in support of his right to say it.

We asked the ACLU to help us understand why they took this position. Here’s what they told us:

Given our belief that Mr. Buell’s off-campus Facebook post, though offensive, was protected by the First Amendment, we are satisfied to see that the school board has taken no further disciplinary action.

The ACLU believes that the response to offensive speech is not the restriction of speech, but more speech, which is why the ACLU has created programs like the “Don’t Filter Me” project to ensure that public schools aren’t illegally denying students access to positive, affirming information about LGBT issues.

Mr. Buell’s Facebook comments, though protected, highlight that work still needs to be done to help people understand why LGBT equality is so important. The ACLU will continue working hard to make sure public schools are safe for all students, including LGBT students, in Florida and in communities across the country.

What do you think?

Is this a freedom of speech issue, or should the rights, needs, and safety of LGBT students be placed ahead of the rights of their teachers?

Is this an opportunity to further discussion, or do teachers, to paraphrase Tinker v. Des Moines, shed their constitutional rights when they enter the schoolhouse employ?

Does the advent of the Internet place an entire new lens on free speech and responsibility of those the state employs to teach, motivate, and protect our young?

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RIGHT WING EXTREMISM

Kanye West Asks Jewish People to ‘Forgive Hitler’ in Antisemitic Rant to Proud Boys Founder

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Kanye West followed up his blatantly antisemitic rant on Alex Jones’ program by urging Jewish people to “forgive Hitler.”

The rapper, who now goes by Ye, appeared on the right-wing platform Censored.TV with Proud Boys founder Gavin McInnes, who said off the top that he hoped to “talk him off the ledge” and prevent him from “becoming an antisemite or a Nazi,” but the rest of the program strongly suggested he was too late, reported Rolling Stone.

“Jews should work for Christians,” West told McInnes. “I’ll hire a Jewish person in a second if I knew they weren’t a spy and I could look through their phone and follow through their house and have a camera all in their living room.”

McInnes met with West, who again wore a black mask covering his entire head, and neo-Nazi Nick Fuentes, who recently joined the rapper for dinner with Donald Trump, and pointed out that Adolf Hitler had a historically bad reputation.

“We make our reputations, that was made by Jewish people,” West claimed. “But some of it’s incorrect. Also, the Holocaust is not the only holocaust, so for them to take that and claim — we have abortion right now. That’s eugenics, that’s genocide. That’s a holocaust that we’re dealing with right now, so because Jewish people control the majority of the media, along with banks, along with real estate, along with malls.”

McInnes argued that secular Jews were problematic “liberal elites,” just like Kamala Harris and Barack Obama, but defended Orthodox Hasidic Jews, and West said he “lumps them all together” and blamed them for pornography — which he compared to a “gas chamber.”

“They can control the narrative,” West said. “History is written by the winners.”

RELATED: Kanye West storms from interview after right-wing podcaster offers ‘slightest’ pushback on his antisemitism

 

Image via Shutterstock

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COMMENTARY

Trump An ‘Enemy of the Constitution’ Declares Nicolle Wallace, Blasting Call to ‘Terminate’ Nation’s Founding Document

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MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace slammed Donald Trump as an “enemy of the Constitution” on Monday after the ex-president, over the weekend, called for the U.S. Constitution to be terminated.

Trump demanded “the termination of all rules, regulations, and articles, even those found in the Constitution,” in light of his most recent – and false – claim the 2020 presidential election was stolen.

That was Saturday, on his Truth Social account.

On Monday, Trump denied having ever said it, despite the post still being up.

Wallace characterized Trump’s call to terminate the Constitution “an extraordinary statement even by the standards of a failed wannabe autocrat who plotted a coup against his own government and recently dined with white supremacists.”

READ MORE: ‘Venom’: Experts Shocked as Gorsuch Angrily Accuses Colorado of Forcing Anti-LGBTQ Baker Into ‘Re-Education Program’

“The disgraced ex-president made his contempt for our democracy as clear as ever, when he called for the United States Constitution to be ‘terminated.'”

Quoting The Washington Post, Wallace said: “Trump’s message on his Truth Social platform reiterated the baseless claims he has made since 2020, that the election was stolen, but he went further by suggesting that the country abandon one of its founding documents.”

She also played a clip of Republican Congressman Dave Joyce of Ohio from Sunday’s ABC News.

Rep. Joyce in the clip twists and turns but ultimately admits that if Trump is the GOP nominee for president in 2024 he will vote for him.

READ MORE: Anti-LGBTQ Slurs on Twitter Up Over 800% as Musk Allows Thousands of Previously Banned Users Back: Reports

“Well, again, it’s early I think there’s gonna be a lot of people in the primary I think at the end of the day, you will have — wherever the Republicans tend to pick up I will fall in behind because that’s –”

ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos interjected, asking,”Even if it’s Donald Trump, as he’s called for suspending the Constitution?”

“Again, I think it’s gonna be a big field. I don’t think Donald Trump’s gonna clear out the field like he did in 2016.”

“I will support whoever the Republican nominee is,” Joyce added.

“And I don’t don’t think that at this point he will be able to get there because I think there’s a lot of other good quality candidates out there.”

“He says a lot of things,” Joyce continued, refusing to denounce Trump.

“Let’s not speed past that moment,” Wallace urged. “This is exactly how Trump happened. All the Republicans in Washington and around the country said, [Trump] ‘says all sorts of stupid you know what. Dorsn’t mean he’s going to do it.'”

“He did all of it, all of it. And then some,” she chastised.

Watch below or at this link.

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'REGURGITATING RIGHT WING TALKING POINTS'

‘Venom’: Experts Shocked as Gorsuch Angrily Accuses Colorado of Forcing Anti-LGBTQ Baker Into ‘Re-Education Program’

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U.S. Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch appeared angry and even hostile at several points throughout Monday’s oral arguments in a case brought by a Colorado right-wing evangelical Christian website designer who is suing the state because she wants to be able to discriminate against same-sex couples who are getting married.

The case, 303 Creative LLC v. Elenis, promises to be one of the most important of the term, and arguments extended more than two hours.

During one of the more heated moments, conservative Justice Gorsuch attacked Colorado Solicitor General Eric Olson, claiming the state forced an infamous anti-LGBTQ baker who also went before the Supreme Court, winning his 2018 case in a very narrow ruling, into a “re-education program.”

RELATED: ‘What the Hell, Sam’: Justice Alito Slammed for Making ‘Joke’ About Black Children in KKK Costumes

Jack Phillips, a business owner who refused to bake cakes for same-sex weddings, citing his religious beliefs, was required to attend a class so he could become familiar with Colorado anti-discrimination law.

The Supreme Court’s ruling at the time called it, “additional remedial measures, including ‘comprehensive staff training on the Public Accommodations section'” of Colorado’s anti-discrimination law.

Justice Gorsuch instead called it a “re-education program,” and slammed the state’s Solicitor General, Eric Olson, with it on Monday.

“Mr. Phillips did go through a re-education training program, pursuant to Colorado law, did he not, Mr. Olson?” Gorsuch asked the solicitor general.

“He went through a process that ensured he was familiar –” Olson responded, before Gorsuch cut him off.

“It was a re-education program, right?” the justice blared.

“It was not a ‘re-education program,'” Olson replied, holding his ground.

“What do you call it?” Gorsuch, dissatisfied, pressed.

“It was a process to make sure he was familiar with Colorado law,” Olson explained.

“Some might be excused for calling that a ‘re-education program,’” Gorsuch snapped.

“I strongly disagree, Justice Gorsuch,” Olson said, defending the law.

Slate’s Mark Joseph Stern, who provided the clip above, warns: “It does not bode well for the future of civil rights law that Gorsuch believes a state imposes ‘reeducation training’ on employers when it reminds them how to comply with nondiscrimination rules.”

RELATED: 5 Things You Need to Know About the Supreme Court Ruling in the Gay Wedding Cake Case

“Astounding that Gorsuch, A Supreme Court Justice,” tweeted Adam Cohen of Attorneys for Good Government, “Refers to Colorado giving courses on following civil rights law, As ‘reeducation training.'”

“Like being taught not to discriminate against LGBTQ is the same as being sent to a gulag for protesting communism in the Soviet Union,” he added.

Professor Elizabeth Sepper of the University of Texas at Austin School of Law says, “Justice Gorsuch describes education about antidiscrimination law and compliance as a REEDUCATION PROGRAM. This is beyond offensive. It was a central and SOFT tool of many civil rights movements and was essential to targeting market discrimination.”

Columbia Law School’s Elizabeth Reiner Platt, the Director of The Law, Rights, and Religion Project responded, “OMG Gorsuch repeatedly insists that a training on civil rights law is a ‘reeducation program.’ Good grief.”

Attorney Andrew L. Seidel, Vice President of Strategic Communications for Americans United for Separation of Church and State tweeted, “WHOA. Gorsuch asks a very hostile question about sending the bakery to ‘a re-education program.’ He spits the phrase with venom and repeats it several times. He’s regurgitating right wing talking points.”

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