Scratch Pad

Friday, July 27, 2012

Anonymity in Pubic Debate

The Senate has been debating the DISCLOSE act which would require groups that participate in political debates to release lists of all donors over a certain dollar amount. I was a big proponent of this sort of disclosure regimen until I saw the reprisals against people who supported California's Proposition 8, a measure to define marriage exclusively as a male-female union.

I was late to the party. The NAACP was an opponent of full disclosure before I was. I read the following in an article by David French at National Review.

In fact, not only was anonymity crucial in our nation’s founding, but it also played a key role in ending segregation. In 1958, the Supreme Court decisively rejected Alabama’s attempt to force the NAACP to publicly identify its “members” and “agents” as a condition for continuing its operations in the state. After the NAACP demonstrated that its members had been exposed to, among other things, “economic reprisal, loss of employment, [and] threat of physical coercion,” the Court held that “inviolability of privacy in group association may in many circumstances be indispensable to preservation of freedom of association, particularly where a group espouses dissident beliefs.”

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Voter ID Laws

I recently heard people argue that there isn't any real voter fraud and that the measures requiring an ID to vote are GOP attempts to suppress the vote of minorities. This article debunks the claim.