A Bay Area assemblyman wants to ban from service police officers and police officer candidates who are members of hate groups or have used hate speech in the past, even in “a private discussion forum” online.
Yet the definition of a “hate group” and “hate speech” used by Assemblyman Ash Kalra’s (D – San Jose) new bill, AB 655, is incredibly broad. Not only does it include armed militia groups and white supremacists promoting “domestic terrorism,” it also includes police officers expressing conservative religious or political views on abortion, marriage, and gender or with membership in a political party or church that does.
One legal expert said the bill would “usher in a new era of McCarthyism” where Muslim, Catholic, Evangelicals, and even registered Republicans would be blacklisted from law enforcement jobs.
“Under the guise of addressing police gangs, the bill at the same time launches an inexplicable, unwarranted, and unprecedented attack on peaceable, conscientious officers who happen to hold conservative political and religious views,” wrote Pacific Justice Institute Senior Staff Attorney Matthew McReynolds.
“Indeed, this is one of the most undisguised and appalling attempts we have ever seen, in more than 20 years of monitoring such legislation, on the freedom of association and freedom to choose minority viewpoints.”
According to a bill fact sheet provided by Kalra’s office, AB 655 is needed to root out “extremist infiltration” into our police departments as evidenced by “the apparent cooperation, participation, and support of some law enforcement,” gave to insurrectionists during the January 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol Building.
The document goes on to say that California sheriff departments all over the state have been “plagued by texting, email, and social media scandals where officers exchanged racist and homophobic messages.”
AB 655 would require police candidates to receive a background check for “official membership in a hate group, participation in hate group activities, or other public expressions of hate.”
Public complaints of employed police officers would result in the same investigation, “and if sustained, could lead to termination.”
So how does broad is the bill’s definition of a hate group and hate speech? Here is the definition from the text of AB 655:
“‘Hate group’ means an organization that, based upon its official statements or principles, the statements of its leaders, or its activities, supports, advocates for, or practices the denial of constitution constitutional rights of, the genocide of, or violence towards, any group of persons based upon race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or disability.”
AB 655 defines hate speech with similar language. It states: “‘Public expression of hate’ means any explicit expression, either on duty or off duty and while identifying oneself as, or reasonably identifiable by others as, a peace officer, in a public forum, on social media including in a private discussion forum, in writing, or in speech, as advocating or supporting the denial of constitution constitutional rights of, the genocide of, or violence towards, any group of persons based upon race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, or disability.”
According to McReynolds, the breath of these definitions raise serious questions. Is the Catholic Church a hate group because it advocates rejecting the “constitutional rights of women to obtain an abortion?” Are all the churches that voiced support for Proposition 8, defining marriage as a union of one man and one woman, “hate groups” because they “opposed LGBTQ constitutional rights to marry?” Are Muslims banned from being officers because they attend a mosque that has “spoken out against homosexuality or gender equality?”
The above comes from a March 15 story on the site of Press California.
Shouldn’t Assemblyman Ash Kaira be ousted and excluded from any government position,
as required of anyone expressing hatred, or belonging to a hate group?
Seems as if his proposed “law”, fits the definition of “hate” very well.
Let’s think about this. The Constitution protects freedom of speech. so any law that prohibits freedom of speech is unconstitutional, is it not! Well, maybe with the exception of yelling fire in a crowded theater. This member of the Assembly does not know his civics. The Catholic Church and any other religious group cannot be labeled as a hate group because the Constitution prohibits the government from abridging the practice of religion. It’s all in the First Amendment, which every officeholder is sworn to uphold, preserve and protect. In case he forgot, “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.” People in good company don’t say or write vile things about others, but they have the right to do it.
I have long been offended by other’s words. I stopped watched movies and now tv for that reason years ago. However all are free to express words as you say. The Lord says we will be accountable for our words and it certainly has made me stop and reflect many times before hitting that enter of post button on the internet. See Matthew 12:36
Freedom of speech is protected by our Constitution. However, our great country was originally founded on Judeo-Christian Biblical beliefs, as lived by responsible, mature, hard-working, self-sacrificing adults, with Good Manners and Good Morals to their neighbors.
Yes, but what this is about, is a direct attack on our constitution, and freedom of speech, and freedom of religion, by Assemblyman Ash.
If this kind of political lawlessness is allowed to continue, there will be even more attacks on Christians.
He needs to be told that his actions are illegal, not acceptable, not allowable, and very un-American.
So our beliefs as Catholics are different from that of the Assemblyman, does this allow him to treat us as criminals?
We had best wake up out there, for example, like the last two commentators.
This is not at all, a case of freedom of speech for the Assemblyman.
It is about his, and others, continuing illegal and criminal attacks and assaults on the Catholic religion.
I think the best way to get rid of the “hate speech” problem, is for the country to undergo a total seismic shift, back to our original Judeo-Christian foundations, with Christian Morality taught, practiced, and upheld everywhere. Good manners, good morals, good speech, dress, and behavior to be required of all. The churches/synagogues (etc.) should all be leading the way!
Your comment, in a way anon., reflects a serious problem in the Catholic community. OK, you say, we need a “seismic shift” back to our foundations. The problem with this thinking is that it is vague and does not address at all, problems like this immediate criminal assault on Catholics. We need to confront this problem directly, and end this bill right now, not go to sleep mumbling, “Oh well, we need to get back to good morals”, ….And if possible, please vote Assemblyman Ash out of office asap.
Of course, a “quick fix” new law could be applied, for this case, to protect Christians– but I don’t think it would fix the basic problem. We have an extremely immature, immoral, uncivil, filthy, lawless, Godless, violent, corrupt society today– and Christians are now in the minority.
Back to sleep anon. You don’t have to do anything. Have a good snore.
Anonymous, hopefully, AB 655 will go nowhere– and die.
Well, there goes the whole police force as I doubt there is a person on the planet who has not said or written something sometime that has offended someone else somewhere sometime.
And was not the attempted destruction of some government buildings by ANTIFA and the left a type of insurrection too?
I think the root of the whole problem is that our society today rejects God and Christian Morality, has no Moral Conscience, no manners, no respect for those in positions of authority, and is in the jaws of Satan. Immature, disordered, mentally-disturbed liberal leftists throw labels at others, blindly accusing them of “hate.” We need competent leadership in the Church, universities, and society, infused with maturity, backbone and Christian Morality, to tackle these problems, and bring our society back to order, decency, self-discipline, maturity, and morality, with daily practice of “love thy neighbor.”
This bill belongs in the trash with the person who wrote it.
I agree! It definitely belongs in the trash!
How come the offense always goes one way? I am offended by all the secularism, looting, vandalism, open borders, unnecessary lockdowns, wearing useless masks — I could go on. Where do I go to complain? Uh, any such complaints would get me called “RACIST”.
In the Senior apt. complex where I live, wearing masks, social distancing, etc., are all mandatory, according to our community regulations. So glad we are all caring for the health and well-being of ourselves, and all our meighbors!
It is no wonder that folks like Kalra think they can decide who is “good” enough to do anything. They mostly rely on the Southern Poverty Law Center, which claims to fight hate in general, but in fact is the most hateful group in the country. They especially hate Catholics and Christians in general. They make lists of people and group that they want to see band. Kalra is just one of many trying to do their work for them.
Immigrant marginal Ash Kalra (D – San Jose) should try banning public defecation in San Jose or, if there is a ban, then enforce it. Please!