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OPINION

Hello, Hillary 2016. Goodbye, First Amendment.

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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In a new poll taken last month by YouGov, an astonishing 41% of Americans – including 51% of Democrats – support criminalizing “hate speech.” In the poll, this proposed hate speech law would "make it a crime for people to make public comments intended to stir up hatred against a group based on such things as their race, gender, religion, ethnic origin, or sexual orientation.”

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While this could seem sensible on the surface, it represents a grave threat to our freedom of speech spelled out in the First Amendment. Who, for example, gets to decide what defines “hate speech” and what is protected free speech? Hate speech is highly subjective and is what progressives often hyperbolically label any speech they disagree with or that doesn’t support their narrative and worldview.

Under this type of law, anyone critical of Sharia Law and Islamic fundamentalism could be prosecuted as hating Muslims; anyone critical of same-sex marriage could be prosecuted as hating gay couples; anyone critical of affirmative action or amnesty could be prosecuted as hating minorities—turning substantive policy differences into a crime.

We’ve seen these types of laws spreading throughout Europe and elsewhere, and if Hillary Clinton is elected in 2016, she has shown repeatedly that she will appease her liberal supporters and make hate speech legislation a major priority.

While Clinton was Secretary of State under President Obama, she championed the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC)-backed United Nations Human Rights Commission Resolution 16/18, which calls for “combating intolerance, negative stereotyping and stigmatization of, and discrimination, incitement to violence, and violence against persons based on religion or belief.”

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This resolution is an overt attempt to force Sharia Law compliance worldwide—banning criticism of Islam everywhere—and Hillary Clinton supports it wholeheartedly. Despite the countries of the OIC ignoring and perpetuating many human rights abuses and even refusing to sign the UN’s Declaration of Human Rights, these nations worked with Hillary Clinton to meet their objective of criminalizing so-called “Islamophobia.”

Just ask Elisabeth Sabaditsch-Wolff, a Viennese housewife and anti-Jihad activist, who was charged and arrested under Austria’s criminal code for "denigrating religious beliefs" after giving a series of seminars about the dangers of radical Islam.

Or ask Pastor James McConnell from Whitewell Metropolitan Tabernacle in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Just last week, it was announced he would be prosecuted under Northern Ireland’s Communications Act 2003 which bans, “sending, or causing to be sent, by means of a public electronic communications network, a message or other matter that was grossly offensive.” His religious sermon, which criticized Islam, may end up making him a criminal for speaking his views.

These are the kind of speech codes that Hillary Clinton would bring to the United States.

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Filmmaker Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, maker of “Innocence of the Muslims,” the video falsely blamed by President Obama and Hillary Clinton on the 2012 Benghazi terror attack that killed four Americans, was jailed as promised. Clinton is reported to have personally vowed to “make sure that the person who made that film ["Innocence of Muslims"] is arrested and prosecuted.”

Hillary Clinton was more consumed with gagging the free speech rights of the filmmaker than finding the terrorists who killed four Americans.

Clinton has also fought against political free speech, supporting a ban on political expenditures — including on movies, news articles, books, and online videos — by corporations and unions, a ban that was ultimately struck down in the Citizens United decision.

According to Clinton, it should be illegal for billionaires to use their First Amendment rights of free speech to advertise their political opinions. However, it is completely fine with her to receive hundreds of millions of dollars directly from billionaires – and foreign governments with horrendous human rights records – to fund the unaccountable Clinton Foundation and her personal income.

Hillary Clinton has been consistent with respect to her positions on limiting free speech here in the US, and like the 41% of Americans who want to criminalize “hate speech,” she forgets that the greatness of our country – and the Western world – depends on the right of free expression and dissenting speech.

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Hillary Clinton’s record shows her disloyalty to the First Amendment, and her potential oath of office would be dishonest if elected. All presidents’ first act is to swear an oath to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. If Clinton cannot fulfill those duties to protect our Bill of Rights, it should immediately disqualify her, or anyone else holding the same beliefs and positions, from the presidency.

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