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Muslim AG Keith Ellison rebuked for claim videoing mosque traffic is illegal - WND
A Minnesota grandmother who was threatened by police for videoing neighborhood traffic problems caused by a mosque and a school is suing Bloomington officials and officers, claiming constitutional violations.
The American Freedom Law Center, defending Sally Ness, alleges the city and police officers violated her First and Fourteenth Amendments rights by threatening her with punishment for videoing information that is in public view.
The legal team now has responded to the intervention in her case of Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, a Muslim.
Ellison argued she violated the state's ban on "video harassment," videoing congregants at Dar al-Farooq mosque "without their consent, causing those congregants and their children to feel intimidated and afraid."
But that's nonsense, contened a reply by AFLC.
"Similar to the city and county defendants, the attorney general asserts that plaintiff’s ‘planned filming activities are not subject to absolute protection under the First Amendment’ (AG Mem. at 2), which, per defendants and the attorney general, means that plaintiff’s filming is either accorded no protection or measurably less protection than other speech activity. Also similar to the city and county defendants, the attorney general asserts that the regulation of plaintiff’s filming activities is merely a regulation of conduct and not speech protected by the First Amendment. (AG Mem. at 9-13). Both assertions serve as the necessary premises for the attorney general’s arguments, and both assertions are legally and factually wrong."
AFLC co-founder Robert Muise argued the First Amendment "fully protects our client’s right to gather information through photographing and videotaping."
"And this is particularly the case here because she is filming public matters related to a public controversy," he said. As the courts have explained, filming matters of public interest is fully protected by the First Amendment. Consequently, the attorney general seeks to make a crime out of what under the Constitution cannot be a crime. Indeed, every news reporter in Minnesota would be surprised to learn that their attorney general doesn’t believe that their filming for the purpose of exposing matters of public concern is protected by the First Amendment, particularly if the subject of their exposé objects."
David Yerushalmi, AFLC senior counsel, said it's no surprise Minnesota’s attorney general "has intervened in this lawsuit to oppose the First Amendment in favor of protecting Islam from public criticism of any sort."
"Attorney General Ellison is a former member of the anti-American, Jew-hating Nation of Islam, an admirer of the rabid black racist Louis Farrakhan, and a card-carrying supporter of, and fundraiser for, the Muslim Brotherhood in America," he pointed out. "Ellison’s brief opposing this lawsuit is a tutorial on how Shariah-centric Muslims and progressives seek to destroy our fundamental liberties in the name of protecting Islam from legitimate criticism."
Ness had been capturing on video "zoning and other violations" by the mosque for several years. But city officials ignored her complaints and those of her neighbors.
In fact, the city adopted an ordinance that "no person shall intentionally take a photograph or otherwise record a child without the consent of the child's parent or guardian."
AFLC said that because Ness "seeks to expose, among other violations, DAF's and the Success Academy's noncompliant and overuse of a local city park – a park in her neighborhood that she would often attempt to use with her grandchildren – her information gathering efforts include, quite necessarily, photographing and videotaping the use of the public park by children associated with DAF and the Success Academy."
LIBERTY HAS NO EXPIRATION DATEDemocrats wouldn't buy a clue if it was government subsidized.
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