Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) has introduced legislation that would directly violate the First Amendment by criminalizing “conspiracy to commit White supremacy,” which includes criticism of non-white people that influences a person to commit a hate crime.
The “Leading Against White Supremacy Act of 2023,” or H.R.61, was introduced by the Texas Democrat last Monday, and seeks to “prevent and prosecute white supremacy inspired hate crime and conspiracy to commit white supremacy inspired hate crime.”
Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee has introduced a House Bill to criminalize “conspiracy to commit white supremacy,” which includes any criticism of non-white people that influences (such as something published or said online) someone who commits a hate crime. https://t.co/QD93bVJmA9 pic.twitter.com/ROwLtvYIha
— Ian Miles Cheong (@stillgray) January 15, 2023
The bill, which has been referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, asserts that an individual engages in a white supremacy-inspired hate crime “when white supremacy ideology has motivated the planning, development, preparation, or perpetration of actions that constituted a crime or were undertaken in furtherance of activity that, if effectuated, would have constituted a crime.”
According to Jackson Lee’s bill, “conspiracy” to engage in White supremacy-inspired hate crime includes the publishing of material that advances “white supremacy, white supremacist ideology, antagonism based on ‘replacement theory’, or hate speech that vilifies or is otherwise directed against any non-White person or group.”
The legislation would also give the Department of Justice (DOJ) the “authority to conduct operations and activities pursuant” to what the agency deems “necessary and appropriate to interdict, mitigate, or prevent such action from culminating in violent activity.”
It also gives the DOJ the authority to “prosecute” individuals who engage in such actions, and to maintain “records of white supremacy inspired hate crimes” and provide annual reports on the crimes.
Critics took to Twitter to call out the Democrat congresswoman for trying to violate the First Amendment and for being racist herself.
In a tweet, Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) accused the Democrats of “making a mockery of the First Amendment.”
“In case you weren’t aware of what the Democrats were prioritizing in the 118th Congress, just take a look,” Boebert wrote. “When they’re not bankrupting our country, they’re busy making a mockery of the First Amendment.”
In case you weren’t aware of what the Democrats were prioritizing in the 118th Congress, just take a look.
When they’re not bankrupting our country, they’re busy making a mockery of the First Amendment. https://t.co/Q8DEEEioTI
— Lauren Boebert (@laurenboebert) January 16, 2023
“Who wants to tell her about the First Amendment?” asked conservative attorney Harmeet Dhillon, who is running for chairwoman of the Republican National Committee (RNC).
Who wants to tell her about the First Amendment? https://t.co/FF0QUQsBg6
— Harmeet K. Dhillon (@pnjaban) January 16, 2023
“Congressman Sheila Jackson Lee just introduced a bill that would make it a federal crime for White people, and White people only, to criticize mass immigration or to say anything that she claims would vilify ‘a non-White person or group,’” one Twitter user responded.
Congressman Sheila Jackson Lee just introduced a bill that would make it a federal crime for White people, and White people only, to criticize mass immigration or to say anything that she claims would vilify "a non-White person or group." pic.twitter.com/WihNgX2ylL
— National Conservative (@NatCon2022) January 14, 2023
“Sheila Jackson Lee should be introduced to the Bill of Rights. Particularly the first amendment pertaining to free speech,” another user said.
Sheila Jackson Lee should be introduced to the Bill of Rights. Particularly the first amendment pertaining to free speech.
— Casey Jones 1 (@Casey__Jones2) January 15, 2023
“This is a disturbing, yet not surprising, piece of #AntiWhite legislation,” another Twitter user wrote.
This is a disturbing, yet not surprising, piece of #AntiWhite legislation
H.R.61 – 118th Congress (2023-2024): Leading Against White Supremacy Act of 2023 | https://t.co/N23O5onw9y | Library of Congress https://t.co/TFJcFc5h5S
— Westernkind Art 🤍 (@artislife14) January 16, 2023
Jackson Lee has asserted in the past that so-called institutional racism and systemic racism “taints and spoils” the way in which the United States treats minorities, claiming that there are “aspects of America’s laws, America’s structure as relates to the black community in particular and other communities that is racist.”
Jackson Lee is no stranger to violations of Americans’ civil liberties. In fact, last week, she spoke on the floor of the House about the Patriot Act — discussing the legislation that significantly infringed on civil liberties with fondness.
Just Dem Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee speaking fondly and nostalgically about **The Patriot Act** — one of the most worst and most radical assault on civil liberties in decades that was supposed to be temporary — holding it up as an example of all that's good in the world: https://t.co/ksqNYIxSRz
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) January 10, 2023