The First Amendment Rights committee is dedicated to holding our government leaders responsible for upholding and protecting the civil liberties protected by the First Amendment, which reads:
“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.”
This amendment is the cornerstone of our democracy. The rights it protects are absolutely essential to individual freedom and to holding our government accountable and preventing fascism. Yet the current POTUS has threatened to sue journalists who report negatively about him, has proposed a “Muslim Registry,” and has attempted to implement executive orders banning Muslims from immigrating to the United States. Lawmakers in five Republican States have introduced bills to criminalize peaceful protest. Republican lawmakers are seeking to pass laws allowing businesses to discriminate against individuals on the basis of religion. Furthermore, this administration has cut the National Endowment for the Arts and plans to additionally defund the National Endowment for Humanities, the Public Broadcasting System, and National Public Radio despite the fact that the funding for these important organizations amounts to a tiny fraction of the total budget. This is clearly an attempt to restrict free expression and research. This committee plans to work with the ACLU and other constitutional scholars and to hold Congress responsible in upholding these most precious and important fundamental rights.