A California court has shot down attempts by state lawmakers to hide their identities after an a blogger upset with new onerous gun control laws published the information of the politicians who voted for the new, more restrictive measures.
The court defended the blogger’s actions as protected free speech.
Posted in 2016, anonymous blogger -operating under the pseudonym “Doe Publius”- published the “Tyrant Registry,” giving the addresses and phone numbers of 40 California lawmakers who supported the myriad of gun control measures in the state.
The lawmakers reportedly received threatening phone calls and messages from irate citizens, which sparked the Californian government to order WordPress, the site’s platform provider, to take the post down. Hands tied, WordPress removed the posts.
However, a federal court ruled on Monday that the “Tyrant Registry” is protected as free speech.
According to MSN, when Publius brought the matter to court, Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill of the US District Court for the Eastern District of California said the post and its republishing by another blogger were “a form of political protest.”
Since then, Publius called O’Neill’s ruling “not just a win for myself, but a win for freedom of speech and political protest.” He stood by his decision to create the “tyrant registry.”
“Much like the Sex Offender Registry, this common sense tyrant registration addresses a public safety hazard alerting the public of tyrants who have violated the civil rights and liberties of people in their communities,” he said.
The Firearms Policy Coalition played a major role in Publius’ case, assisting the blogger with legal matters.
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