Robert Hubbell writes a daily letter you can subscribe to here.
It’s generally better than mine — which rankles.
But Robert Hubbell never told you about RECAF (that has tripled in the past two months) . . .
. . . or PRKR and CTHR (that have tripled in the past six) . . .
. . . or SPRT (that tripled one exceptionally weird day last month) . . .
. . . or GLDD (that took half a lifetime — “silt accumulates” — but has now tripled, too).
(Conveniently, none of the disasters I’ve suggested over the years comes immediately to mind.)
(Well, “Google Puts and Soap Slivers.”)
But I digress.
The point is: read Robert Hubbell’s excellent Slouching Toward Authoritarianism:
. . . last week, the Florida legislature passed [a bill] which makes it a crime to “deplatform” a candidate for statewide office in Florida. . . . The bill imposes a fine of $250,000 per day for banning a candidate and subjects the social media company to criminal proceedings . . . The bill is blatantly unconstitutional . . . but social media platforms will be wary of testing the bill’s provisions under pain of criminal prosecution.
. . . Suppose a candidate sends a tweet calling for his supporters to attack the Capitol and hang the Vice-President of the United States who is presiding over the count of the Electoral College ballots. If Twitter “deplatforms” that candidate, under Florida’s new law, Twitter must evaluate its risk of criminal proceedings and a $250,000 per day fine before deplatforming that candidate. . . .
. . . In Texas, the legislature is considering a bill that would subject parents to criminal liability for assisting their child or teen with gender transition. Let me repeat that statement: Texas is considering charging parents with a crime for making medical decisions they believe to be in the best interests of their children’s long-term mental health. See KSAT, “Texas bill looks to criminalize parents who support transgender medical procedures for minors.” (“Mother says she’s willing to become a criminal to save her son’s life.”)
. . . Oklahoma and Florida have passed laws that grant . . . immunity to anyone who hits a protester with his car while “fleeing a riot.”
. . . Republicans “clutch their pearls” in feigned outrage when anyone suggests that they intend to apply these laws to anyone other than bona fide criminals. Oh, yeah? The Arkansas legislature just held a hearing on its anti-transgender bill. A father of a transgender son spoke for 30 seconds over his allotted two minutes. See The Independent, “Father concerned at anti-trans law arrested at hearing for going 30 seconds over his speaking limit.” For that offense, he was arrested, led away in handcuffs, jailed for several hours, and charged with disorderly conduct. Meanwhile, [those speaking in favor of the bill were allowed to speak for up 40 minutes.]
Got that? In Arkansas, if you exceed your allotted time by 30 seconds speaking in favor of a parent’s right to make medical decisions for their children, you are arrested. But if you speak in favor of criminalizing gender transition therapy, you can take all the time you want. And they expect us to believe they will fairly apply laws that seem to give permission to drivers to run over protesters?
→ There’s more. Read it all?
And if it moves you to help save democracy, please click here.
When German Engineers Get Bored (thanks, Joey!):