Hate speech is not “free speech” and is not protected by the U.S. Constitution. In fact, the Constitution protects victims from those who commit hate crimes, which involves speech.
- Offenses involving actual or perceived race, color, religion, or national origin,
- Offenses involving actual or perceived religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, or disability, and other specifications.
Committing a hate crime result in incarceration depending on the degree of the offense.
Threats to kill Donald Trump by anti-Trump protesters is considered hate speech. He is being targeted because of his ideological and political beliefs. Another white man, Sen. [score]Bernard Sanders[/score], who is also running for president, is not receiving the same threats.
Ongoing threats and encouragements to kill police officers in the name of “racial equality” violates the First Amendment of the Constitution. Not all speech is free speech. In fact, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled more than once that “hate speech” that incites violence falls outside of constitutional protection.
Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. argued that, “The most stringent protection of free speech would not protect a man in falsely shouting fire in a theater and causing a panic”(Schenck v. United States, 249 U.S. 47, 39 S. Ct. 247, 63 L. Ed. 470 ).
In 1969 the Supreme Court added three conditions to the Holmes argument for restricting speech; the speech in question must have 1) the intent and 2) the likelihood of causing 3) imminent violence. Inciting the intent to kill police officers, involving direct encouragements for others to commit crimes and to commit them “now,” all meet the three-prong criteria. Yet, few if any legal actions have been taken against the PLP or any other group for inciting violence that has resulted in the death of police officers specifically over the last year.
The citizens of Baltimore and Ferguson, Trump supporters, policemen and women and their families, as well as conservative and law enforcement organizations, all have a valid claim under the Constitution to demand that legal action be taken to curtail and halt public incitement to violence being directed towards a specific people group of people on a daily basis. Sadly, the predicament is that law enforcement is tasked with, and in some cases is prevented from, enforcing the very laws designed to protect them and others.