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Ribbons tied in a bow

Eight days ago I posted about Marion Millar of Airdrie, Scotland, who was summoned to a police station for a compulsory interview over allegations that she had posted homophobic and transphobic tweets.

She has now been charged.

“Activist Marion Millar charged with sending homophobic and transphobic tweets”, reports the Times.

Marion Millar, 50, from Airdrie, was charged under the Malicious Communications Act for tweets published in 2019 and 2020. If convicted she faces up to two years in prison.

The messages investigated by officers are understood to include a retweeted photograph of a bow of ribbons in the green, white and purple colours of the Suffragettes, tied around a tree outside the Glasgow studio where a BBC soap opera is shot.

It is one at least six tweets reported to Police Scotland. The nature of the others is unclear. Millar, who owns an accountancy business, was bailed to appear at Glasgow sheriff court on July 20.

Her supporters said that the prosecution was an attack on the rights of women to express themselves.

Added later: The Times has turned off the comments to its account of the Marion Millar case, presumably for fear of committing contempt of court, so the readers have taken to making veiled allusions to it when commenting on other stories in the paper’s Scotland section.

A couple of the Scottish papers have also reported on the case:

Feminist campaigner charged with ‘hate crime’ – Tom Gordon in the Herald.

Woman charged with malicious communication over ‘transphobic’ tweet – Gina Davidson in the Scotsman.

44 comments to Ribbons tied in a bow

  • Jesus Christ on a pogo stick, for this they want to put her in jail for two years? I’d close off comments too! J.K. Rowling deals with Western-world-wide hate because of her transphobia? That’s sad too. I’ve read summat about that flap, and she didn’t sound transphobic to me — she was just saying it shouldn’t be a firing offense for somebody else. I’ll bet just about any middle-eastern Muslim could froth about wanting to slay Jews, and come off (officially) smelling like a rose. Even Facebook wouldn’t ban them.

    I’ve known of people on the net who’ve said far worse. And then there’s goatse.

    O tempora! O mores!

  • George Atkisson

    You can never be “Woke” enough. There are legions of bat-shite insane people (?) on social media ready to charge forth and display their superior virtue. Twatter even has a convenient sidebar displaying who is ‘trending’ to aim the ‘sans culottes’ in the desired direction. Apologies are seen as proof of guilt. ‘Mirabile dictu’ it only goes one way, politically. The moderators and fact checkers see to that.

  • itellyounothing

    Both Scotland and Twitter are absolutely loaded with wannabe Chekists.

    Wait till Nicola Sturgeon prosecutes her husband for chasing her round dressed as a schoolboy in the 80s…..

    This case should surprise nobody.

  • Ian

    Of course the Scottish version of the CPS are tucked up tightly in bed with Stonewall.

  • Paul Marks

    No matter how careful a person is, the modern laws of the United Kingdom are so vague (deliberately vague) that one can be dragged into court, fined or sent to prison – simply for expressing an opinion that the “Woke” establishment do not like.

    Even as far back as the 1970s the Home Office, and other government departments, were taking advice (advice on how to frame “equalities legislation”) from Marxist academics – self confessed Marxists. Herbert Marcuse and his idea that Freedom of Speech was “Repressive Tolerance”, because it supposedly “harms” “disadvantaged groups”, has gradually got written into British law.

    The United Kingdom is not an extreme case – most Western countries are like this.

    There are consequences, terrible consequences, for allowing the education system and the bureaucracy to be dominated by Frankfurt School Marxist ideas – such as the idea that Freedom of Speech is “Repressive Tolerance” and must be destroyed.

  • staghounds

    “Marion Millar got arrested!”

    “For what?”

    “Tweeting something.”

    “What did she tweet?”

    “I don’t know, it’s a secret.”

    One interesting aspect of this is that our Masters have created a situation where what the accused has done is a secret, since the “hate tweets” can’t be published. I suspect that’s a feature not a bug.

  • Roué le Jour

    Not entirely original. In the sexting affair of a few years ago where young girls were sending glamour pics of the themselves to boys, the same logic applied. No one else, including the girls parents, could assess the seriousness of the situation because for the prosecutor to show anyone the pics would be publishing child pornography.

  • NickM

    The JK Rowling case was really the big wake-up call. Not least because JKR was (is?) a real big Labour supporter. I don’t recall what horror she uttered but it was roughly along the lines of stating biological sex was a thing. Which it is. The current conflation of transgender with intersex is an outrageous triumph of codswallop over actual science.


  • asiaseen

    To sort the HEs from the SHEs a simple question; “Do you have, or have you ever had a penis?”

  • Lee Moore

    Roue : No one else, including the girls parents, could assess the seriousness of the situation because for the prosecutor to show anyone the pics would be publishing child pornography.

    So how does the jury reach its verdict ?

  • Sigivald

    “a retweeted photograph of a bow of ribbons in the green, white and purple colours of the Suffragettes, tied around a tree outside the Glasgow studio where a BBC soap opera is shot.”


  • george m weinberg

    I had to look up wheesht. Didn’t help. What is she being charged for?

  • bobby b

    “So how does the jury reach its verdict ?”

    Same way it does in a heroin possession case. The State – the prosecutor – can possess the illegal item for purposes of evidence. The defense team cannot.

    Used to be, there were some prosecutors of kiddie-porn cases who would, as part of the usual disclosure-to-the-defense process, send to the defense lawyer floppy discs containing the KP files. A few days later, the files would be on the lawyer’s computer as a part of defense preparations. (You need to review that evidence as a part of the defense, to make sure there is a case existing that the files actually do show kids.) At the first indication on some court document that the defense lawyer had those files, a warrant would be issued to search his computers, and he would be busted too. Nasty people.

  • asiaseen
    June 4, 2021 at 3:04 pm

    To sort the HEs from the SHEs a simple question; “Do you have, or have you ever had a penis?”

    That’s simplistic, and assumes sex and gender are the same thing. Not everybody does. I wrote a post about that, some years ago: https://www.samizdata.net/2015/06/samizdata-quote-of-the-day-579/#comment-684160 . That was in a discussion about Bruce Jenner becoming Caitlin Jenner.

    When we discuss sports, whether to allow boys ‘masquerading’ as girls is simple: for most sports, don’t. Whatever gender you are, testosterone is testosterone. (They check for the Big T in the Olympics. The Eastern bloc was reputed to juice their female athletes up with testosterone so they could win. If so, it probably wasn’t good for the females in question afterwards.) If you are dealing with a post-operative transsexual, wait maybe five years for the new hormones to sink in, then the governing body for the sport can decide.

    Renee Richards was a pretty decent tennis player when she was a he. After transition and surgery she was no better than he was, ranking about the same in Women’s tennis. She pointed out that she was stuck hauling a man’s skeleton about with a woman’s muscles, so it was fair. I know I lost about half of my physical strength and quite a bit of my aggression after I’d been on estrogen for a while. But that was okay, as I was neither a laborer nor an athlete.

    In the world of gender, it’s considered polite to use the pronoun people are dressed for. (A dress and a beard completely ruin that algorithm.) In the regular world, you use the pronoun that seems appropriate, unless asked otherwise. No snickering, that isn’t polite. You can do without gendered words. I once had to write a job manual applicable to both sexes/genders, and did it with no trouble at all. (Other people hardly noticed.)

    Not only do people have varying ways of feeling gendered, they have their own ways of perceiving gender. Most people see me as a woman. (If I had to present my credentials, I could prove it.) But I’ve had to come to peace with people who see me as a man. My size works against me there. Such is life.

  • llamas

    re ‘Wheesht’

    A common exclamation in the oat-eating portion of the main island of the UK is ‘Haud yer wheesht!’, meaning, basically, ‘shut up!’. Often abbreviated to simply ‘wheesht!’, meaning ‘hush!’.

    So the import of the sticker saying ‘Women won’t wheesht!’ is ‘Women won’t shut up!’

    So now you know.

    How the sticker shown can possibly from the basis of an allegation of a ‘hate crime’ is, quite simply, beyond my ability to comprehend. But perhaps it’s just me.



  • staghounds

    bobby b- do you know of an actual situation like the one you describe, or is it a defence lawyer fairy tale?

    Our procedure is to give the defence an opportunity to come look at the material at our office. I tell them if they want copies I’ll turn them over on a disk or, I suppose if the amount were huge, a thumb drive. But I’d warn them, and make them sign a statement to the effect, that the data are not to be copied or saved in any way and that any computer they are watched on must be disconnected from the internet while the disk is in it.

    I’ve only had one ask for a copy. And almost never do they look at everything.

  • Lee Moore

    Asiaseen : To sort the HEs from the SHEs a simple question; “Do you have, or have you ever had a penis?”

    Ellen : That’s simplistic, and assumes sex and gender are the same thing. Not everybody does. I wrote a post about that, some years ago

    ….which I have read.

    Just for the record, Asiaseen’s formulation is indeed simplistic, though it’s a very good proxy. I don’t propose to engage on the subject of gender, since, as I understand it, that is something going on inside people’s heads, invisible to observers under current technology.

    As to sex, though, Ellen’s post is biologically misconceived, and something very close to Asiaseen’s formula is both simple and correct. You just have to substitute “testis” for “penis” and we’re done.

    The fascinating, and sometimes tragic, array of unusual karotypes, or genetic abnormalities, or hormonal exposures that are the causes of diseases (or differences if one prefers) of sexual development do not make any difference to the strict binary of sex. You can have male sex (factories for small gametes); female sex (factories for large gametes); both of the two sexes (both types of gamete factories) ; or, in sad cases, no sex at all (no gamete factories.) That’s all there is.

  • staghounds

    Llamas, I suppose that the malice (or whatever it’s called) element has to be shown by demonstrating the wrongthink of Mrs. Millar. It’s not a crime if someone we like says a thing, but it is when a class enemy says it.

    If Boris Johnson said “Women won’t shut up!” they’d want his head. But if Vanessa Redgrave said it, why that’s a brave woman speaking truth to power, you misogynist!

    For my first exhibit, British radio stations routinely play lyrics that Nigel Farage or Nick Griffin would immediately be arrested for saying on the public streets.

    The whole thing just creeps me out. I’m an American, 30 years and counting as a prosecutor, and I can’t imagine being handed a case like this.

    That’s not strictly true, I have citizens wanting someone arrested for saying bad things on the internet often enough to know that “Be Nice” laws would get some traction. Not much, but not none.

  • Katy Hibbert

    I’m looking forward to the day a doctor refuses to treat a transcritter for prostate cancer on the grounds that it claimed, despite its meat and two veg, to be a woman.

  • llamas

    I think there may well be some confusion here, which staghounds alludes to, but tangentially.

    The statement ‘Women won’t wheesht / shut up!’ is capable of being understood in two ways.

    – when spoken by a misogynist, as an ironical insult – you know, women just won’t shut up. Think Jim Davidson / Andrew Dice Clay.

    – when spoken by a feminist or a supporter of women’s rights, as a statement of power and defiance – women aren’t going to shut up, so there!

    In either case, I still don’t see the basis for an allegation of a ‘hate crime’. But perhaps it’s just me.



  • Rich Rostrom

    Ellen: as a man, Richards was a strong amateur. As a woman, Richards was a high-ranked professional – 20th in the world at one point. At the time she was 44 years old, outplaying many women who were 20 years younger. Richards did lose upper body strength in transition, but clearly retained male advantages.

    Fitness expert Mark Rippetoe has noted that males have a huge advantage in Standing Vertical Jump – and that this advantage is not affected by hormonal treatments of adults.

  • John Lewis

    I assume the US equivalent of “women won’t wheesht” would be “nevertheless she persisted”.

    Something akin to hate speech when spoken by a man but a badge of pride when adopted and utilised by liberal women.

  • Lee Moore

    If I may add to Rich’s comment, from the very sympathetic wiki entry :

    Richards has since expressed ambivalence about her legacy, and came to believe her past as a man provided her with advantages over her competitors, saying “Having lived for the past 30 years, I know if I’d had surgery at the age of 22, and then at 24 went on the tour, no genetic woman in the world would have been able to come close to me. And so I’ve reconsidered my opinion.”

  • bobby b

    June 4, 2021 at 6:12 pm

    “bobby b- do you know of an actual situation like the one you describe, or is it a defence lawyer fairy tale?”

    Not sure it has to be either one or the other.

    It never happened to me personally.

    I had five CP cases back in private practice, all related, in fed court. It would have been a nice fee to keep, but I just didn’t have the experience in a fairly technical area, so I associated with a guy with CP experience, and I just second-chaired the cases.

    He’s the one who described the danger to me when I wanted to do the usual “gather all of the evidence” thing. He warned me that the local fed prosecutor used to do it to people. In a discovery conference at fedcourt, dealing with the longtime CP prosecutor, he alluded to the practice, and the fed prosecutor sort of stiffly replied that “they didn’t do that anymore”, which to me implied that at one time they did.

    So, maybe just apocryphal, but I doubt it. (Til then, I thought that not reviewing all of the evidence would always be malpractice. That guy taught me that if your client had enough file matches from the FBI’s “known kiddie files” group, there was no point in examining the bulk of the evidence anyway.)

    (I’m hoping you weren’t a federal prosecutor. Those guys were another breed.)

  • Natalie Solent (Essex)

    John Lewis,

    The context of Marion Millar’s use of “Women won’t wheesht” is specific to the current quarrel within the Scottish independence movement. On the one side you have the mainstream of the Scottish National Party, which is fairly “woke”. Nicola Sturgeon made some video in which she introduced herself with her pronouns, stuff like that. The SNP’s allies in the Scottish Parliament, the Scottish Green Party, are very woke indeed. On the other side you have disaffected members and ex-members of the SNP who are to the left of their former party in economic terms but more socially conservative, though they would hate being described as conservative anything. This group are particularly opposed to gender self-identification. Some of them left the SNP to form a breakaway pro-independence party called Alba under the leadership of the former leader of the SNP, Alex Salmond, once Nicola Sturgeon’s mentor but now her bitterest enemy. It’s all very Jacobean.

    The “won’t wheesht” came into it because some people argued that pro-independence women should not risk derailing independence by publicly opposing the SNP. Marion Millar is one of those who refused to go along with that idea.

    I hope I have given a fair sketch of both sides, neither of which I am sympathetic to politically. However I have great sympathy for Ms Millar in her current situation.

  • Dalb

    Supposing she had posted homophobic and transphobic tweets. Imagine they were truly vile and hateful. Not just differencesof opinion, but really the nastiest, worst stuff you can imagine, with no redeeming value.

    Why should that be a crime?

  • nDalben

    Shouldn’t people have a right to their own opinions, good, bad, or ugly?

    And it shouldn’t matter in principle, but since these were tweets, no one has to see them if they don’t want, in fact most people would probably have to actively look for them. So it can hardly have been creating an atmosphere of fear or harassment. If you don”t like it, don”t folllow her account.

  • Rich Rostrom
    June 4, 2021 at 7:50 pm

    Ellen: as a man, Richards was a strong amateur. As a woman, Richards was a high-ranked professional – 20th in the world at one point. At the time she was 44 years old, outplaying many women who were 20 years younger. Richards did lose upper body strength in transition, but clearly retained male advantages.

    Now that’s something I didn’t know. I read her book, Second Serve, but that was decades ago, and I didn’t much like the person the book presented. Perhaps I didn’t read thoroughly, or it may have slipped my mind.

  • staghounds

    bobby b

    No, State. Small city with lots of crime. I did a summer with the Justice Department and that cured me, I could never have stood the bureaucracy- you may as well have to fill out time slips.

  • I’m confused. Is it the position of the UK government that it’s homophobic and transphobic for women to vote?

  • bobby b

    Staghounds: Good to know. In my experience, state-based prosecutors were generally good smart lawyers who had made stable, well-thought-out career decisions. Heck, even I did some city misdemeanor contract prosecution in a medium-large state capital. (Wasn’t good enough to be full-time, though.)

    But the federal prosecutors all viewed themselves as God’s angels of vengeance. They were absolutely no fun in the bars.

  • Paul Marks

    Sadly this post is already out of date.

    A man in England has just been sentenced to four years in prison.

    He must have “tweeted” something really naughty? No – he was sent to prison for having what the judge called a “toxic ideology”, the man is allegedly a National Socialist (he has fake Nazi daggers on the wall of his bedroom and owns a copy of “My Struggle” by Adolf Hitler – as well as the “Anarchist Cookbook”, and a book on knife fighting, all these books are legal in the United Kingdom). Perhaps he has fantasies of shoving people like me into gas chambers – but fantasies did not use to be illegal in the United Kingdom.

    What terrorism was the man planning? He does not appear to have been planning anything – but the court decided that he had a “toxic ideology” and that was enough to send him to prison for years.

    When people talk of the “liberal courts” they are quite wrong – this is no form of liberalism. Being sent to prison for having a “toxic ideology” is Frankfurt School MARXISM – and if anyone is not prepared to call it Marxism, then that person is part of the problem.

    The education system and the media are working all the time to produce a population that will think it is correct to send people to prison for their “toxic ideology”.

  • Paul Marks

    Mr Ed sometimes says that he can tell a piece of legislation is from the post 1997 Blair-Brown-Cameron-May era by the language it uses – by the style of the wording. The vague (deliberately unclear) language – and the bullying tone. And one can see this creep into legislation in the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man as well – under pressure from the British government.

    But all this did not start with Mr Blair – or even (as Dr Sean Gabb used to say) with the government led by Margaret Thatcher – this sort of legislation really got under way in the 1960s in Britain.

    Pieces of legislation deliberately worded to sound as if they were doing one thing – whilst really doing something quite different (things that the public would not have supported – had-they-known), and efforts to use legislation to change what people believed – and to punish the expression of “wrong” beliefs.

    The 1960s presented itself as being about “freedom” and in some ways IT WAS – for example the ending of the censorship of plays (censorship of plays brought in, using deeply dishonest tactics, by Sir Robert Walpole) – but there were also the first signs that a specific ideology was being pushed (BY LAW) and that people who dissented from that ideology would be PUNISHED for their dissent.

  • the last toryboy

    “Charged with sending tweets”.

    Stop the world, I want to get off.

  • I’ll bet just about any middle-eastern Muslim could froth about wanting to slay Jews, and come off (officially) smelling like a rose. Even Facebook wouldn’t ban them. (Ellen, June 3, 2021 at 11:38 pm)

    That’s one bet Ellen would win, were anyone foolish enough to take it. In the last 24 hours, I came across this (h/t instapundit) and I could link other examples.

    As Natalie indicates in her clarifying comment (June 4, 2021 at 10:10 pm), Marion Millar supports a natz breakaway group that opposes the natz in power (think trotskyists versus communists in the 1930s). The natz in power have already displayed disgusting readiness to use corrupt lawfare against their rivals. The rivals are not freedom-lovers either (like Natalie, I am attracted to neither group) but (as the trotskyists did) have the minor restraint of being out-of-power, and the lesser guilt of no longer being able to practice legal shenanigans of a kind to make this incident look trivial (N.B. they have their own dirty past from when they were in power).

    (Niall ever-the-optimist Kilmartin can hope that these experiences might suggest the value of free speech to at least some of the out-of-power natz, but even I have little hope of the ex-leader.)

    As for the particular alleged cause of this incident, well,

    – how far the in-power-natz (ab)use of hate speech laws prompts the out-of-power natz to talk about the “trans mafia”,

    – how far the divide relates to the old leader’s being replaced by the new leader just a few months before ‘transphobia’ became the big new(speak) word,

    – how far this is a political cat-fight, with Marion’s concern for what ‘feminism’ meant a decade ago being exacerbated by Sturgeon’s lack of it, and Sturgeon’s boasted concern to spare trans from the evil of mean tweets being very much more fake still,

    is an exercise I leave to any readers who can parse that sentence. 🙂

  • Chester Draws

    In the world of gender, it’s considered polite to use the pronoun people are dressed for.

    Indeed. I am happy to call a trans-woman “she”. But then when I used to work in Customs I would address known criminals as “sir” or “ma’am”. What we call people in social situations has very little bearing on what they actually are.

    What I won’t do is regard such a person as truly female. If a trans-woman is DNA tested, they have XY chromosomes and are male. Some things are immutable. No amount of hand-waving will change their essential nature.

    If a person who is 1/64th African origin wants to be thought of as “black”, then for social purposes they are. But a doctor would be an idiot to treat them on that basis.

  • Lee Moore

    I wonder how folk who insist that referring to people by “their” preferred pronouns is just a matter of courtesy, feel about Your Grace, Your Lordship and so on.

    I imagine there are still one or two nobles about who get a bit sniffy if we commoners don’t address them properly, but if confronted by one such, would it really be unreasonably discourteous to say “No offence intended but I don’t really hold with all that stuff, myself. Smacks a bit of forelock tugging” ?

    Yes, you might risk hurting that Duke’s feelings, but maybe you feel it’s more important to uphold the dignity of your forelock than to humour the Duke. One could go either way, perhaps according to whether you liked the Duke or not, or were planning to marry one of his children. But I find it hard to imagine a wave of umbrage descending on you from the chattering classes, if you felt unwilling to humour him.

    And that’s for an actual Duke. If you meet a chap who’s appointed himself a Duke, without dscussing it first with Queenie, then I’m doubting that too many people would be humouring him.

  • In the Roman Empire, the Jews and Christians were prepared to “render unto Caesar” a good deal of respect, which included tolerating his own belief that he was a god (and in Hadrian’s case that his catamite was a god too), but (when they could find the courage – and many found an admirable amount) they refused to say explicitly, publicly, that the emperor was a god – and his catamite was a (less important) god too. (For this, the Jews suffered much more than Marion Millar is threatened with. The political consequences are still with us today.)

    The Romans complained about this pointless, baffling, and above all impolite obstinacy of the Jews – and later, of the Christians too. Why did they have to insist on thus insulting the Emperor – and, by implication, the Empire – by this evasive silence, this offer of respect and peaceableness that nevertheless would not explicitly say the demanded thing. Why could they not just do the decent thing and make the public sacrifice.

    As Ellen remarks above, it is in fact fairly easy to avoid using pronouns in written English and not that hard in spoken, at least to the point where any use is clearly accidental. For a trans to choose a short, or easily abbreviable, new name helps such silent avoidance of dispute – and so is taken as a courteously silent (possibly, of course, accidental) invitation to avoid dispute by me.

    English is a most unusual language in this respect and one of the cultural imperialisms of wokeness is its contemptuous ignoring of the greater problems their demands inflict in almost all other languages, but we have this advantage in English and ordinarily I use it – for example when talking with my trans work colleague, whom I know (because we talked about the motivating feelings and their timeline when the issue first arose) does not, for example, meet the more stringent criteria for trans credibility that Ellen once described in a comment.

    (A useful if slightly harsh analogy is that I believe there can be a real condition called kleptomania but would be very hostile to the demand that the police must give unquestioning credit to every burglar they catch who claims to have it rather than a greedy desire to possess the fruits of others’ work.)

    Summary: a variant of ‘let us agree to disagree’ is ‘let us silently avoid explicit disagreement (or explicit mere doubting)’. However, I would no more see the demand for explicit agreement as a mere issue of politeness today than I would have in ancient Rome – an analogy that both reminds me how much courage was needed to live that honesty back then and shames me to think how little courage I would have if circumstances put me in a similar position – which, as I live in Scotland, they (probably won’t but just) might – and I failed to live it now.

  • staghounds

    One would think that the use of pronouns would be beneath or beyond the reach of political life.

  • Paul Marks

    “It is considered polite to….”.

    Since when has politeness been a matter of the criminal law?

    People who are “not polite” being fined or sent to prison – and “politeness” being defined by the doctrines of the Frankfurt School of Marxism, for example its obsession with the “Trans” as a “victim group” of capitalist “exploitation” and “oppression”.

    NO – just NO.

    Such laws are unacceptable. Juries should nullify such laws by refusing to convict.

  • Nicholas (Unlicensed Joker) Gray

    nDalben- one can have any opinion one likes! The trouble comes if you ever dare to express it!

  • Pat Brady (Finn Park)

    A “Malicious Communications” law is terrifying.

    How can the public evaluate the reasonableness of any charge if no one can publish/share the evidence. There is no protection from reckless censorship. Saying something as innocuous as: “The world is round.” could result in a criminal charge AND THERE IS NO DEFENSE. Its all about mindless emotions not objective standards.

    Any government that enacts such a law loses any legitimate claim to rule. Preamble to the US Declaration of Independence covers the current environment quite well….

  • Pat Brady (Finn Park)

    Sadly it looks most of the most worthy, capable Scots have emigrated over the past two centuries – largely to opportunities beyond Europe/UK. Most of the people left in Scotland are a sad, contemptible lot.

  • Paul Marks

    Pat Brady – it is not just Scotland, the whole United Kingdom has many insane laws now. They started to be passed many years ago.

    I repeat – juries should refuse to convict people for “crimes” that are no-such-thing.

    Jury nullification appears to be the only way to deal with this madness – as the government refuses to REPEAL legislation that sometimes makes even telling jokes (on line) or stating opinions (on line) “crimes”.