This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
rules at Council Meetings that would, by her own admission, discourage people from speaking at those meetings. That is, by definition, creating a “chilling effect” on free speech. Her initial response was to unfriend me, which I mentioned on my Facebook page. She then wrote a lengthy treatise on my Facebook page, which she posted in the middle of the Ravens’ Super Bowl Game. That entire piece is still on my page, but here is my point-by-point response (to the portions I thought merited my response). Her prose is in regular text. My response is both BOLDED and ITALICIZED.
Yes, I unfriended you because I don't support your deceptive politics. No, you unfriended me because you were unhappy that I called you on your desire to limit the rights of the people of Cecil County, because I have been unwilling to give you a pass on your general behavior, and because I have been vocal in my opposition to the narrative that the so-called “Republican” establishment has been proffering. … So I don’t have a problem with people exercising their free speech. Yet apparently you do, because you believe…
The problem is when others no longer feel comfortable to exercise their free speech because of the crazy, circus-like behavior of the Patriots. The security officer outside has shared many of the citizens' complaints with us and we have also heard directly from the public. What I proposed and I believe was incorporated into the policies and procedures was a standard of decorum limiting threatening, slanderous or obscene language. Actually, the LAW already covers speech which is considered threatening, slanderous, or obscene. What YOU wanted to do was create an environment in which “thugs” (your word, not mine) or people whose behavior YOU consider to be “crazy” or “circus-like”, are discouraged from speaking.
Interestingly, the enforcement is up to the discretion of the Council President, Mr. Hodge. Who you, with all the decorum of a middle-schooler, label as “King Robert”. See, I’d take your justification at face-value, were the context not making it so obviously laughable. Another issue I have encountered with first amendment rights is the rampant spreading of propaganda. “Propaganda” (read: Speech which is critical of Councilwoman Diana Broomell, and is therefore protected under the 1st Amendment)
That's really not shocking because it's been a part of political war from the beginning. Ah, you must be talking about the political war which has been waged against Tari Moore since she got involved in Cecil County politics. The political war that has been financed by State Senator EJ Pipkin. The political war which has now spread to Del. Mike Smigiel and GOP Central Committee Chair Chris Zeauskas (former Tari Moore opponent) now forcing the county to spend money defending against a meritless restraining order.
The Patriots like to hurl slanderous remarks and then don't want you to respond. You must be talking about the lack of a coherent response to the piece that I wrote in December (which you were welcome to respond to then, but which you declined to)—a response which, to date, has consisted of one elected official engaging in verbal bulldozing on a radio show, a 2nd elected official being caught misrepresenting the facts on a subsequent radio show, and then the minions of these two “leading lights” spending their radio show engaged in the lamest and dumbest of personal attacks… all without really responding to the substance of what was written. However, that is also a part of freedom of speech - to have the opportunity to respond.
Which you are free to do. On your blog. On the radio. In newspaper interviews. On TV. In EJ Pipkin-financed mailers and robocalls. (deleted the bit about various Cecil media outlets. If you don’t like Cecil media, get Boss Pipkin to buy his own outlet. I’m surprised he hasn’t already, frankly—but then he’d need to find a competent person to run it, and there isn’t a single one of them in his circle of idiocy.) For effective democracy, the goal is to promote a credible, transparent process so those who want to know the truth can at least find it. I see. So you’re unhappy with your blog traffic, so you want to somehow FORCE people to read it? Perhaps you ought to ask yourself why people are unwilling to buy the line you’re selling?
If slanderous remarks or stories are printed, you should be able to respond. If slanderous remarks or stories are printed, then there are already remedies at law that exist without you having to tamp down on the 1st Amendment rights of Cecil County residents.
If a process is in place at Council Meetings that discourages this, the public should beware. Establishing decorum at meetings is encouraged to promote our first amendment rights, not
discourage it. Democracy is a rough-and-tumble process, Ms. Broomell. Your desire for “decorum” is not an excuse to deny the free speech rights of people. Moreover, your desire for decorum rings hollow, given your own, well-documented behavior. You want people to behave more civilly? Then try setting an example with your own conduct. The question, Mr. Langer, is why are you supporting the “so called” Cecil County Patriots when they are not supporters of constitutional liberties. Why do I support the Patriots… well, let’s see – I believe I answered this question back in December. Contrary to your accusations, the CCP have been THE consistent supporters of constitutional rights and first principles in Cecil County since I first started interacting with activists in Cecil County in 2008. Moreover, that viewpoint is shared by other committed, principled conservative activists from across the state, who recognize that the CCP are the conservative organization of record in Cecil County—people whose views I respect, and who have no ulterior motive in seeing them as such. Then there is the fact that the activists in the CCP have never steered me wrong. Never lied to me. Never abused my goodwill. Have never been two-faced to me, quoted me out of
context, or done anything other than treated me with respect and friendship. I contrast that with other folks in your circle… the people who have been attacking Tari Moore for years. If I’m choosing between the CCP and your compadres, given my personal history, I’m going to choose the CCP six days a week and twice on Sunday. I’d warn you to watch out, but when you’re thrown out of office at the next election cycle and no longer of import to that Machine, you’ll see their true colors, too. The Patriots do not promote democracy in their organization. Do they need to? If they’re Constitutionalists, they certainly don’t. Their endorsements and decisions are made from a select executive board that are not elected but appointed for, I believe, 10 years. This was done for the express purpose of "avoiding a hostile takeover". Yes, those were their words. Clearly, they’ve learned tough lessons from Republican politics in Cecil County. Because what someone might otherwise dismiss as a paranoid fantasy becomes a very real political reality when a group of people show up at a conservative group’s election meeting with a bunch of checks, demanding to have their vote, simply to prevent someone they’ve chosen to go to war with from getting elected president of that organization.
But I’ll tell you—I’ll take a committed conservative PRIVATE organization consistently advancing the principles of free markets and limited government WITHOUT having had a change in leadership, than having an organization that undergoes a hostile takeover by a political machine with a not-so-secret agenda, and then disappears… Yeah, just how did the Cecil Republican Women fare after Tari Moore was denied the election to the Presidency of that organization via just the scenario I outline above? Oh, that’s right, WHAT Cecil Republican Women? (deleted self-serving recitation of cherry-picked points in a resume that I don’t particularly care about) Why wouldn't the patriots support my efforts? Because you’re part of a political machine that has been trying to destroy them. Period. End of story.
(delete of the recitation of the allegations against Cecil County Council President Robert Hodge, who Ms. Broomell calls, “King Robert”) For those that don't know me, I just ask that you judge me according to my actions and not the accusations. Remember, Mr. Langer, when I had to confront Mr. Kratovil? He was trying to get away with the 15 minute, private, individual meetings with constituents when he promised us a town hall. I asked for your help to call Mr. Kratovil out but you declined and I had to do it on
my own. While I was concerned that I might be arrested for barging in on a Congressman's private meeting, I felt the principle of the situation outweighed the consequences. Thankfully he did come out and address the crowd. Yes, it's important to exercise your first amendment rights in order to get out the truth and I do share my concerns on www.dianabroomell.com for those very reasons. However, with our right to free speech comes a responsibility to exercise that right with truth. Wrong. Flat out wrong. Not just wrong, but a complete misrepresentation of the facts. The fact is, Jackie Gregory of the Cecil County Patriots and I had been on Frank Kratovil’s butt all day that day. Since the early morning hours when we confronted him (not you, me and Jackie) at the Grange Hall meeting. Where Jackie Gregory hammered him on his votes, and I got him to essentially admit that he didn’t understand his constitutional responsibilities as a member of Congress. Then, that afternoon, it was ME, not YOU, who was doing video, confronting SEIU agitators, and spurring the crowd against Mr. Kratovil. I was the one who was pushing Kratovil to make a public promise on his health care vote. I was the one who was working the crowd to be of one voice. And why does that make sense? Because, at the time, I was the one in the crowd who had actual professional experience pushing back against lefty agitators. I was the one who had actually advocated directly with members of Congress. I was the one who was working with Tea Party groups across the
nation to strategize as to how best to deal with Democrat members of Congress doing their District Town Hall tours. So, while you’re inventing facts to suit your odd views that day, the reality was something VERY different. I have no doubt, have never doubted that you were a participant in the efforts that afternoon. Unlike you, I don’t try to make things all about me. But let’s not lie about who has done what within a movement…
This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
We've moved you to where you read on your other device.
Get the full title to continue reading from where you left off, or restart the preview.