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HB 167 Decimiates First Amendment – Time to Contact Legislators

This is A bill designed to bully and intimidate peaceful protestors

HB 167

HB 167 Decimiates First Amendment
Time to Contact Legislators

By True Idaho News

This Op-Ed includes an urgent call to action.  Links to your legislators are below. 

An Idaho lawmaker recently proposed legislation aimed at protecting critical infrastructure from damage caused by trespassers. On the surface, one might think HB 167 sounds reasonable, but the bill’s language is far too broad and far-reaching. If passed, the rights of Idahoans to peacefully assemble and protest would be decimated.

This bill is slated for a floor vote in the Idaho House of Representatives this coming week. Suffice it to say HB 167 is a horrible bill that does not align with Constitutional principles but instead aligns with the goals of the World Economic Forum to control a population. True Idaho News rarely issues any kind of “contact your legislator” warning, but this is one of those times.

Under the proposed law, calling for rallies or protests against unconstitutional statutes, regulations, or rules could become a criminal and civil offense. The bill would have a chilling effect on free speech and legitimate dissent, complete with both criminal and civil charges along with hefty financial penalties.

Broad, undefined terms will result in arbitrary political enforcement

In HB 167, the term “critical infrastructure” is broad and undefined. This means everything from food production facilities and restaurants to hospitals, health districts, and government facilities could be classified as “critical.” Under this bill, our Constitutionally guaranteed rights to freedom of speech and freedom of assembly would evaporate, as even peaceful protesters could be charged with criminal trespass simply because a facility is arbitrarily deemed “critical.”

A bill designed to bully and intimidate peaceful protestors

Furthermore, under the proposed legislation, protestors can be classified as felons, receiving up to 10 years in prison, and the bill holds organizations liable for $100,000 if one of their participants trespasses during a protest – even if he or she crosses an unknown invisible line.

HB 167 also allows ‘critical facilities’ to pursue a civil case against both the individual AND the organization that called for a protest. Thus, all top-down authoritarian executives and officials will be able to get away with draconian oppression. The mere fear of a $100,000 fine for each protestor would kill the motivation for any organization to push back against unconstitutional actions.

It should also be noted HB 167 destroys the rights of people on both sides of the political aisle. It would criminalize any person or group:

  • protesting the creation of a nuclear waste facility
  • picketing outside a financial services firm that bilked investors of millions
  • protesting outside a regional health board meeting for mandating unlawful fines
  • staging a protest at the location of a newly proposed mine or energy plant
  • picketing a restaurant for any reason whatsoever
  • objecting to the creation of high-emitting EMF cell phone towers
  • protesting the creation of a chemical plant or a chemical dump

The list is endless. Simply stated, instead of protecting critical infrastructure, this bill creates an environment in which peaceful protesters could be criminalized and penalized simply for exercising their Constitutionally guaranteed rights of assembly and speech.

Trespass and criminal destruction laws already exist in Idaho

It’s important to note that this legislation is unlikely to deter any criminals’ intent on destruction and will only punish innocent citizens exercising their rights. Additionally, trespass and criminal destruction laws already exist in Idaho. HB 167 is not only unnecessary, it will have serious unintended consequences, including the destruction of both free speech and legitimate dissent.

It may sound hyperbolic but it is not – vital components of the First Amendment will be erased if HB 167 passes. Think of it this way: any “yes” vote on HB 167 is a vote forcing citizens to submit to a top-down authoritarian government. The Editorial Board of True Idaho News is calling on the state legislature to vote “no” on House Bill 167 and encourages all citizens to contact their legislators and request the same.

Read Here: HOUSE BILL 167

Related: The Critical Infrastructure Plot to Take Over Idaho

Find your district’s House Representatives here

Find your Representative’s email and phone number here


3 Comments on HB 167 Decimiates First Amendment – Time to Contact Legislators

  1. This bill should be supported by every American who wants to see an end to the likes of Bundy and his peoples rights network. If this bill will shut them up and put them behind bars, then I’m all for it. You have a right to protest not trespass. You have a right to speak, not to interrupt. As for the 2A, insurrectionists like Bundy, Rodriguez and peoples rights should never be allowed to own a firearm for their participation in treason! Redoubt news should be shut down too for pretending to be for freedom of speech but then blocking all my comments from appearing just because you disagree! If you can do it with free speech, we can do it to guns and protesting! Keep being hypocrites and right wing nut jobs, it makes everyone hate you and your stupid christian cause!!

  2. This bill is a direct hit at weakening the protections already in place here in Idaho. I don’t know Britt Raybould, but I wonder if she knows what she has put her name to and how this even got out of committee.

    Not only must this be killed on the floor – it is another reason I support legislation to require that all bills presented are explicit in showing who has written them.

  3. This bill doesn’t only violate 1st Amendment protections, it also violates 2nd Amendment protections by allowing any business or agency to simply post a sign banning weapons. If you then enter the property and possibly didn’t notice the sign, you could still be charged with a crime. As it is now, the business or property owner can simply ask you to leave. If you refuse, then you are trespassing.

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