Letter to the Editor | ‘Throw the bums out’

For democracy to function, we must be able to throw the bums out. For all the hypocritical blather about protecting speech and reducing the influence of special interests, the Senate Democrat’s proposal to rewrite the First Amendment is intended to empower politicians to limit and regulate speech so as to protect incumbency, tip the playing field in their favor and enable them to favor their “special interests.”

In a letter to Sens. Patrick Leahy and Chuck Grassley last June, the American Civil Liberties Union called the Mark Udall amendment “deceptively complex,” “unnecessary,” “dangerous for liberties,” “corrosive to vigorous political debate,” “exceedingly dangerous to democratic processes,” “the first time the amendatory process has been used to directly limit specifically enumerated rights and freedoms,” and said that it would “fundamentally ‘break’ the Constitution and endanger civil rights and civil liberties for generations.”

In their motion to support this travesty, the State College Borough Council is surely well intended, but the phrase attributed to Joseph Stalin to describe those who served his goals unknowingly might well apply to the council (“ State College Borough Council urges reversal of Citizens United decision,” Sept. 8, CDT). As a cosponsor, Sen. Bob Casey shows himself eager to rob citizens of their fundamental rights in order to protect himself and his political colleagues against speech.

Jim Shortle

Centre Hall