The California Legislature claims to be “forward thinking” then attempts to force individuals to conform to a view unacceptable to them. The First Amendment was ratified to prevent authoritarian government from stifling free speech. Supreme Court Justice, Kennedy recently helped protect anti-abortion pregnancy clinics from having to recommend the name and phones of abortion providers. I am pro-choice and believe in a woman’s “right to choose,” but I also believe in a person’s right to disagree and remain silent. Privacy, closely held beliefs, and free association are being threatened.
Similarly, so-called liberal politicians demand disclosure of names and personal information of donors to any organization that is involved in public affairs. True, few causes today generate the potential violence that confronted civil-rights protesters in the deep south 60 years ago, but the NAACP fought hard to protect the right of Americans to support unpopular causes without the fear of retaliation. Today, retaliation from compelled disclosure remains at risk in the present political climate. Bullying and mobs are being stirred up by “resist” groups that believe theirs are the only correct ideas and all others’ must “go.” Funny how a liberal California politician, like Maxine Waters, can urge harassment and intimidation on the one hand but then demand “anti-bullying” messages in our children’s schools on the other.
Unlike China, Americans have the right to free association and privacy, and can seek change without having to register and report their activities. These are precious rights; once gone, they may never return.