Parsing Trump: Sedition? Incitement?

deirdre

Senior Member.
We're hitting a wall because of another language gap issue. We'll just have to agree to disagree i guess.

They don't, and I haven't said that they do


The problem with that is that it sounds lawful taken out of context, but given his proclamation that he thinks many of the lawfully slated electors weren't, it's subverting the authority of the government and of the popular vote.
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
I think people need to stop. breathe. and think honestly and carefully about precedent.
The Repubs will take back the house in 2022 (esp if we get the Trump impeachment through!). Biden and Harris are not as ambiguous as Trump in their inciteful speech.

I know noone will listen to me, but one should seriously ponder this precedent.
 
I haven't seen any information indicating that a permit for a march was filed.
Because they didn't need one. The permits aren't for assembly on any scale (that's a Constitutional guarantee, so you don't need one). What permits are issued for are practical concerns. For instance, if I wanted to hold a speech with 5,000 people listening on the Lincoln Memorial steps, I can just go do that. Right now. But, if I want to make sure no one else is there trying to use the steps at the same time or I want to set up loudspeakers, then I go get a permit.
 

Landru

Moderator
Staff member
Because they didn't need one. The permits aren't for assembly on any scale (that's a Constitutional guarantee, so you don't need one). What permits are issued for are practical concerns. For instance, if I wanted to hold a speech with 5,000 people listening on the Lincoln Memorial steps, I can just go do that. Right now. But, if I want to make sure no one else is there trying to use the steps at the same time or I want to set up loudspeakers, then I go get a permit.
DC PD suggests otherwise. https://mpdc.dc.gov/page/special-events-permits-issued-agency
 

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deirdre

Senior Member.
This organization says:
Article:
The Metropolitan Police, because they lost an important court case, are required to allow permit-less marches in the street as long as they stay within a single lane. Demonstrations on public sidewalks are legally permissable without a permit so long as they don’t block the walkway and fewer than 100 people are expected.


its last annual report was 2015-2016, so this info could be out of date
 
It is something of a complicated animal to keep track of. Part of it has to do with the jurisdictional nightmare that is DC.

It isn't unusual to see something going on and there's police cars from four different polices. That even bleeds into Virginia and Maryland. For instance, during a drive home one night, there was a wreck on the George Washington Parkway that had US Park Police, Virginia State Police, City of Alexandria Police, and Amtrak (really!) Police cars on scene.
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
Article:
Capitol Police: For protests on or around the Capitol Buildings, you need to apply for a permit with the Capitol Police. They say to apply at least five days in advance of your activity to guarantee processing, but to allow up to 2 weeks if applying by snail mail. This page on the Capitol Police web site has a map of the Capitol grounds, plus guidelines for permitted activities and steps to get a permit and contact information for the Capitol Police Special Events Unit.

The page https://www.uscp.gov/visiting-capitol-hill/regulations-prohibitions has a link to "Activities Requiring Permits", but it's broken for me.
Of course we don't know whether there was a permit issued or not. ( https://www.uscp.gov/media-center/press-releases is not working for me, either. The January 7th press release is silent on this issue. ) Whether there was a permit or not could be an indication as to whether this activity was lawful or not.

The permits aren't for assembly on any scale (that's a Constitutional guarantee, so you don't need one).
Constitutional rights are not absolute, and can be regulated by law to safeguard other rights. That usually entails that you have to get a permit in advance, but it's hard for the police to refuse to grant it.
Gun legislation is another example of a constitutional right that is abridged for the sake of public safety.
 

Landru

Moderator
Staff member
DC ACLU website is instructive.
https://www.acludc.org/en/permits
 

JMartJr

Member
Because they didn't need one. The permits aren't for assembly on any scale (t
Not sure if personal experience is viewed as helpful, but last time I was in a protest (very small, saving whales) was on the National Mall, and the Park Police showed up to explain to us that on the sidewalks of DC, at that time and according to these officers, you could protest without a permit EXCEPT on the Mall. There you need a permit, they said.

So we went home, leaving whales unsaved.
 

Leifer

Senior Member.
Unfortunatly, I might have to agree that Trump narrowly skirted genuine "Incitement". He might have legally been speaking in obtuse energetic terms.... and he had no control over "how or why" the crowd reacted.
Now, you and me have learned here how an opinion can become "primed", well before a future decision is made. But try to explain that to a confused average (and angry) public.
 
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Mendel

Senior Member.
Unfortunatly, I might have to agree that Trump narrowly skirted genuine "Incitement". He might have legally been speaking in obtuse energetic terms.... and he had no control over "how or why" the crowd reacted.
Now, you and me have learned here how an opinion can become "primed", well before a future decision is made. But try to explain that to a confused average (and angry) public.
It doesn't depend on the public, it depends on the court; possible the Supreme Court. We'll see what happens (or not).
 

deirdre

Senior Member.
It doesn't depend on the public, it depends on the court; possible the Supreme Court. We'll see what happens (or not).
the Supreme Court isnt going to touch this. The Supreme Court has always been pro free speech. They are also aware of setting ridiculous precedents that would annihilate free speech. He specifically said "peacefully".

It completely depends on the public. Public sentiment (ie votes and donations) is the only reason the House impeached him, not because he incited the riot. Guiliani on the other hand... but noone seems to care what he said, so i guess it's ok.
 

Amber Robot

Active Member
An impeachment trial isn't a legal trial it is a political one, so the "jurors" can decide however they want. The Democrats may well have had better chances with an article stating that he was derelict in his duty to protect the United States by his actions -- or lack thereof -- during the Capitol attack.
 

Mendel

Senior Member.
An impeachment trial isn't a legal trial it is a political one, so the "jurors" can decide however they want. The Democrats may well have had better chances with an article stating that he was derelict in his duty to protect the United States by his actions -- or lack thereof -- during the Capitol attack.
The core issue, though, is the claim that the election was stolen from Trump. That's the lie which caused the violence; on the 6th, many GOP Reps supported it, and my guess is that the Democrats want to have it out in the open how many still do, with what we know now.

I believe that lie is driving a wedge into the GOP, and it should also drive a wedge into the democratic institutions; "unity" has to be found over democratic principles. (Note the capitalization.)
 

Z.W. Wolf

Senior Member.
The act of sedition was a process that started last summer. Trump created the stolen election narrative out of nothing. The lie was repeated relentlessly. Two hours after midnight on the morning after election day Trump declared himself president, which itself was an extraordinary act. Can anyone picture George Bush doing that?

That started the phase in which lies were created and repeated at a fantastic rate; meant to condition the public. To skip much detail, the crowd was brought to D.C., the mood of the crowd was monitored and fully known, a number of speakers strove to put the crowd into an overwrought emotional state. With carefully chosen words, they were given permission to act. Not ordered; given permission.
 

NoParty

Senior Member.
Unfortunatly, I might have to agree that Trump narrowly skirted genuine "Incitement". He might have legally been speaking in obtuse energetic terms.... and he had no control over "how or why" the crowd reacted.
Now, you and me have learned here how an opinion can become "primed", well before a future decision is made. But try to explain that to a confused average (and angry) public.
I think that most fair-minded people would agree that Trump's words that day definitely
contributed to his supporters rioting and murdering...but our First Amendment tradition
runs so deep that I think legal "Incitement" is a very, very high bar. Not impossible...
but quite difficult. Trump isn't good at much, but he seems to have spent his entire
life trying to say ugly things, without actually, explicitly saying them. Did he want that
motley group to go violently attack the Capitol? I can't say for sure...though if I had to wager, I'd pick "Yes." But were his provocative, dangerous words legally close enough to
"Go violently attack the Capitol!" ? Possible...but I'd be surprised.
 

FatPhil

New Member
Not ordered; given permission.

One of the tricks I've played elsewhere in such discussions is to encourage those who are 100% sure that there was no incitement to list near synonyms and related concepts to the verb 'incite', and then to score them on how well they apply to the situation. With milder, less politically loaded words, it's easier to have a discussion about the extent to which they apply. A common set that come up are "support", "encourage", "empower", "enable", and "embolden", for example, but there are many others. It's very easy to get an admission of support and encouragement (to do what they came there to do), but almost all of them can be fessed up to without too much argumentation. The one in that list that is fought against the most is "enable", but that's because many people aren't familiar with the concept of enabling behaviour (and using a naive "they were already *able*, so Trump didn't *enable* them" counterargument). With a bit of discussion, get them to push up their relevance ratings. Generally, all but the most irrational will agree to a whole swathe of related terms being applicable. The twist is then to get them to define "incite", and watch them recycle the words they've already agreed to (so, yes, you encourage them to build a word list that will act in your favour right from the start).

Expect plenty of cognitive dissonance at this point, and argumentation to retreat to automatic gainsaying. The best response I achieved from this technique was "but it was only *technically* incitement".
 

Z.W. Wolf

Senior Member.
I was watching the speech live and commenting on another MB

http://dimeforscale.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=31368&start=225#p1559414

Somehow I knew exactly what was going on. I could feel the emotional tone.
 
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