Video archive of the US Congress

House Proceeding 04-29-09 on Apr 29th, 2009 :: 0:12:35 to 0:18:20
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Virginia Foxx

0:12:33 to 0:12:56( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: matthew sheppard justice. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida reserves the balance of his time. the gentlewoman from north carolina. ms. foxx: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank my colleague from the rules committee for yielding time to us to be able to discuss this bill. the discussion srounding this bill today will no doubt center on the idea of crimes committed out of hate.

Virginia Foxx

0:12:35 to 0:18:20( Edit History Discussion )
Speech By: Virginia Foxx

Virginia Foxx

0:12:57 to 0:13:18( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: there will be talk about the rg which begs the question, is there such a thing as nonhateful violent crime? but in all the debate over criminal acts, a larger and forgotten debate is often left unspoken. and that is a debate over the role of free expression in our society. if this bill becomes law, it

Virginia Foxx

0:13:19 to 0:13:39( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: will have a chilling effect on many law-abidinging americans -- law-abiding americans' freedom of expression. the robust and healthy exchange of ideas is an american distinction. because we are a land where free expression is one of our cherished foundational ideals, we he a long tradition of protecting the speech of everne from those with the

Virginia Foxx

0:13:40 to 0:14:00( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: most mainstream ideas to those on the fringe. why do we do this? because we know that in the end in a healthy marketplace of ideas, where the public square allows for an airing of all ideas, the best ideas and principles come out on top. in a strong marketplace of ideas , an american marketplace,

Virginia Foxx

0:14:01 to 0:14:22( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: bankrupt ideas are destined to fail. we should not live and legislate in fear of bankrupt ideas. marginal concepts, bad ideas, and flawed philosophies will always be buried beneath the tide of free and democratic expression. where free speech protects the individuals' right to hold and express an opinion, even if such

Virginia Foxx

0:14:23 to 0:14:43( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: an opinion may be wrong. holding this ideal is one reason why we on the minority side are so distressed that this is a closed rule and we are not going to be allowed to offer amendments today because we know yesterday from the rules committee that some of our

Virginia Foxx

0:14:44 to 0:15:05( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: amendments would garner majority support. we are very distressed about that. ultimately a healthy public square always has a chilling effect on the forces of hate red -- hatred, but today we are considering a bill that will start us down the road toward a public square that is less robust, more restrictive, and

Virginia Foxx

0:15:06 to 0:15:28( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: will squelch our cherished actual right to free speech. it will establish a new category of criminal activity which is thought crimes. today it is the politically correct thought crimes, those directed toward certain protected groups, but when we open the door creating this new criminal category of thought crimes, it is but a small step

Virginia Foxx

0:15:29 to 0:15:49( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: to add new types of thought crimes to the list and suddenly we find ourselves back on the orwellian threshold of "1984" and staring down the specter of thought police. in george orwell's novel, "1984" the government attempts to control not only the speech and actions but also the thoughts of its subjects.

Virginia Foxx

0:15:50 to 0:16:11( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: labeling disapproved thoughts with the term, thought crime. the thought police use psychology and omni press present surveillance to find and eliminate members of society who are capable of mere thought of challenging ruling authority. the way this bill is written, law enforcement will be called upon to unearth a criminal's motivation for committing a crime.

Virginia Foxx

0:16:12 to 0:16:32( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: the question must then be asked, what thoughts caused the perpetrator to commit the so-called hate crime? and what caused this person to have these thoughts? could it have been, for example, the sermon of a local religious leader? perhaps a respected local rabbi who preached a message out of religious conviction and belief in a sacred book?

Virginia Foxx

0:16:33 to 0:16:53( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: under this law that rabbi may be guilting of inducing an asket violence simply because of his religious convictions. it wouldn't take many arrests to put a chokehold on the free speech of religious leaders across our nation. in closing, i would like to quote liberal commentator glenn greenwall, srnl in apologists for conservatives like my

Virginia Foxx

0:16:54 to 0:17:14( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: sefment he has strong words for hate crime bills such as those which already exist in europe and our neighbor to the north, canada writing on last year he called hate crime laws, quote, oppressive and pernicious. allow me to quote him at length because he summarizes the consequences of this type of legislation very well.

Virginia Foxx

0:17:15 to 0:17:35( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: quote, empowering the state to punish speech is not only the most dangerous step a society can take, though it is that, it's also the most senseless. it never achieves its intended effect of suppressing or eliminating a particular view. if anything, it has the opposite effect by driving it underound, thus preventing debate and e

Virginia Foxx

0:17:36 to 0:17:56( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: as i said earlier, the best antidote to hate perceived or real is the bright light of public debate and scrutiny, not the outright sensorship contained in this legislation. my friends this legislation starts us down a slippery slope. no longer are all americans subject to equal justice under the law. no, a murder of a police officer can be treated more leniently

Virginia Foxx

0:17:57 to 0:18:18( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: under this law than someone who is convicted of a so-called hate motivated murder of a protected class of citizens. this is not equal justice. this is codifying of a thought crimes law that weakens our fi our long tradition of equal justice under the law. i urge my colleagues -- i will urge my colleagues to vote no on

Virginia Foxx

0:18:19 to 0:18:20( Edit History Discussion )

Virginia Foxx: this rule and no on the underlying bill.

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