The first amendment to the United States constitution reads:
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.
Nowhere in there does it say anything about “unless the people work for the government”. Well today another big chunk was chipped away from the bill of rights by the conservative majority on Supreme Court including new shrub appointees Alito and Roberts. In a case involving a Los Angeles prosecutor attempting to expose a lie by a witness the court ruled that
The Supreme Court on Tuesday restricted the free-speech rights of the nation’s 21 million public employees, ruling that the 1st Amendment does not protect them from being punished for complaining to their managers about possible wrongdoing.
Although government employees have the same rights as other citizens to speak out on controversies of the day, they do not have the right to speak freely inside their offices on matters related to “their official duties,” the high court said in a 5-4 decision.
Why the hell should government employees not be allowed to speak freely on matters relating to their official duties. This implies that soldiers for example would not be allowed to speak out about orders that were illegal. This is something that has clearly been deemed a soldiers responsibility by multiple war crimes courts since World War 2. If someone sees the law being broken as part of their official duties they plainly have a responsibility to the people of the United States to speak out and do something about it. The court is absolutely wrong on this decision.
The Bush administration and the Republican party have total contempt for the Constitution and the Bill of rights. The Presidential oath of office states
I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.
and the congressional oath of office is
I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter: So help me God
Please read both of those oaths carefully. Nowhere in either one does it say anything about defending American people, property, or corporations. The one and only thing the President and Congress are charged with defending and protecting is the Constitution of the United States. Also
The Constitution specifies in Article VI, clause 3:
“The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the members of the several state legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the United States and of the several states, shall be bound by oath or affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.”
However, the man residing in the White House today and his cronies in the administration and the congressional leadership have consistently done nothing but undermine the constitution. They have passed and renewed the Patriot Act, they have waged an illegal war in Iraq, they have incarcerated people without legal representation, or charges for indefinite periods, and the president has repeatedly issued signing statements that he will ignore laws passed by congress. This president, and vice-president need to be impeached and all the republicans in congress need to be thrown out on their asses.
The Bill of Rights: As Revised By George W. Bush
Note: The following text is a transcription of the first ten amendments to the Constitution in their original form. These amendments were ratified December 15, 1791, and form what is known as the “Bill of Rights.”
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.
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.
In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people