In an infuriating video, two students at the College of DuPage, a public university, were on campus exercising their First Amendment rights by passing out pocket Constitutions and fliers that read “America is a free speech zone,” when approached by a police officer and threatened with arrest.
Filmed ironically only one day after “Constitution Day,” the footage show the officer infringe on the students’ right to freely express their political opinions by threatening to kidnap and throw them in a cage, claiming they are “soliciting.”
The officer tells the students that they need to get a permit and that they can’t “just do it whenever you want.”
“You can’t do it out here, otherwise I’m going to have to lock you up,” the officer told the men.
Engaging the cop, one of the men asks, “What are the rules for doing this kind of stuff on campus?”
“You go to the Student Life office, and they give you a permit to do so,” the officer replied.
The obvious absurdity of having to get a permit to exercise your First Amendment rights speaks to the administrative decimation of liberty.
Creating administrative rules, which impede American’s free speech rights, by limiting a student’s ability to freely express their thoughts and ideas on campus, seems patently offensive to the idea of freedom.
The seemingly constitutionally illiterate officer attempts to explain that if they didn’t require a permit people would be lined up doing the same thing with different viewpoints, as if that were a bad thing.
“You can’t have everybody out here doing this. Otherwise you’d see stuff lined up all along here. Everybody’d have their different view and a point of view. So you can’t do that,” the clueless officer said.
At this point Kara Hamilton, a representative with Turning Point USA, who accompanied the students, interrupts the officer.
“So, like free speech,” Hamilton interjects.
The officer responded by attempting to equivocate, telling her he’s not stopping their free speech, but they aren’t allowed to solicit.
“It’s not free speech ma’am. Nobody’s stopping you from free speech, but you can’t solicit out here,” the officer said, to which one of the student quickly responds, “What are we soliciting?”
The officer then goes full tyrant, telling them that they are soliciting their opinions, which will require a permit.
“You’re soliciting your opinions… You need to go get a permit,” the cop said.
See what the cop did there? He attempts to equate their exercising of their First Amendment rights, with solicitation when it’s very clear the students are simply expressing their political thoughts, ideas and beliefs.
The fact that this cop acts as if campus being a marketplace for differing ideas, viewpoints and perspectives is in some way offensive, and something that isn’t wanted by the college, would seem to be indicative of a growing homogenization of thought on college campuses.
In case you haven’t been paying attention, the permit to engage in political speech and hand out literature on a public college campus is the Constitution! This blatant attempt at usurping political speech cannot be allowed to stand.
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