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Tag: free speech

St. Louis City Forces Good Samaritans to Appear in Court, Unceremoniously Drops Charges

St. Louis City Forces Good Samaritans to Appear in Court, Unceremoniously Drops Charges

On October 31, an officer of the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department gave citations to Ray Redlich and Chris Ohnimus. Their alleged offense? Giving sandwiches to the homeless. The citations required Redlich and Ohnimus to appear in St. Louis City Municipal Court on the morning of December 4, to face the charges against them. If either of the two failed to appear for this court date, the court could have issued warrants for their arrest and they would also have…

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Volunteers Are Lobbyists, Rules Eighth Circuit: Sharply Divided Panel Deals Severe Blow to the First Amendment

Volunteers Are Lobbyists, Rules Eighth Circuit: Sharply Divided Panel Deals Severe Blow to the First Amendment

Mexico, MO – Today, an Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals panel ruled, 2-1, that unpaid citizen activists can be forced to comply with the same registration, reporting, and disclosure requirements as professional lobbyists working for large corporations. This decision is unprecedented and represents a significant strike against Americans’ First Amendment right “to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”  Ron Calzone is a citizen activist from Dixon, Missouri, who has for years traveled to the State Capitol to share his…

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Freedom Center’s Director of Litigation on Front Page of Time Magazine

Freedom Center’s Director of Litigation on Front Page of Time Magazine

A couple of months ago Dave Roland, the Freedom Center of Missouri’s director of litigation, was invited to take part in a special project by Time Magazine. French photographic artist JR would take pictures of a couple hundred people from all sides of the debate on firearms in America, then allow them – in their own words – to explain their perspective. The photographs would then be woven into an interactive mural. A still version of the mural would be…

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Ron Calzone Explains Our Citizen Activist Speech Case

Ron Calzone Explains Our Citizen Activist Speech Case

In the above video, Ron Calzone explains in his own words the basis and critical importance of our Citizen Activist Free Speech case.  This case involves a Missouri statute that requires citizen activists to register as lobbyists and (under threat of huge fines and criminal penalties) to file regular reports with the government regarding efforts to talk to government officials about public policy – even if no one is paying the activist to speak on their behalf.  The Missouri Ethics…

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Extended Thoughts on the Police Officer’s Suit Against Black Lives Matter

Extended Thoughts on the Police Officer’s Suit Against Black Lives Matter

Last week a Baton Rouge police officer wounded in an ambush that killed three officers and wounded two others filed a lawsuit, Officer John Doe Smith v. Black Lives Matter, et al., claiming that Black Lives Matter, and several of its most prominent activists, should be held liable for the injuries he suffered.  Over the weekend a journalist asked Dave for comment on the lawsuit, which has resulted in his being quoted by PBS NewsHour (twice), the Washington Post, and the Atlantic.  By necessity,…

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