P4 February 9, 2015
Criminals or victims?
Relevant amendments involved in this case are the first and fourteenth amendment.
Section one of the fourteenth amendment contains the due process clause, this clause makes it unlawful for local and state governments to discriminate against people. In this case, the
SMMAMC leader, and his seven members, may use this amendment in their appeal. The
SMMAMC leader can argue that the police, a form of local government, discriminated against him due to his veteran status. This would mean that the local government has violated Patrick
Henry’s fourteenth amendment rights, specifically the due process clause would be violated. The plaintiff may also use the first amendment to win his appeal over the City of Santa Monica. The relevant first amendment rights, that apply to this case, are the right to assemble and freedom of speech. The right to assemble allows citizens to gather in public meetings to discuss public affairs and influence public policy. The SMMAMC group can argue that they were simply exercising their freedom of assembly right granted under the first amendment. SMMAMC was hosting a public gathering where they were discussing the bad treatment of the homeless in the city of Santa Monica, also they were trying to influence public policy by acting out the shooting of Howard Jarvis. Acting out the shooting of Howard Jarvis is a form of speech that is protected under the freedom of speech of the first amendment. The SMMAMC leader can argue that this public gathering, that was political in nature, and whose goal was to influence public policy was acting lawfully under the first amendment rights to assemble and freedom of speech.
Furthermore, the City of Santa Monica assumed that the actions of the SMMAMC leader would
Jose Mendez Anaya
P4 February 9, 2015
incite a riot, they thought a riot would occur even though no riot or ,suspicious activity relating to the formation of a riot, occurred. On the other hand, the City of Santa Monica can defend this conviction by arguing that the SMMAMC group did not have a permit to use audio equipment in the promenade. As such, they have violated a city ordinance and there is no supreme court case that dismisses this fact. Furthermore, the police warned Patrick Henry to back down and stop broadcasting his message in the promenade, but he refused to do so. This was fair because the police warned Henry, but he refused to follow through their orders therefore he was disobeying the police and Henry took the risk so he was arrested. Furthermore, since Patrick Henry refused to follow the police officers order’s, he can be charged with disorderly conduct. Also, since the
SMMAMC group was refusing to stop their broadcast, they were causing a scene and disturbing the peace of the people. Furthermore, the messages the SMMAMC group was enforcing were strong and could be interpreted by some to have a high probability to cause a riot. Patrick
Henry’s call to action against the “Oppressive establishment” were strong and controversial, the intent was to bring about political change via any mean necessary. Under the California Criminal
Syndicalism Act any unlawful act that advocates political change via illegal or forceful ways is a felony. The SMMAMC advocates were attempting to convince citizens in the promenade to take action and force the city of Santa Monica to improve the way they treat the homeless. This is a form of political change because it deals with a specific group of people, the homeless, and it advocates for a change in public policy regarding that group of people. According to Gitlow v
New York no local government can prohibit the freedom of speech right of the first amendment.
The SMMAMC group was enforcing their freedom of speech right throughout the entire event.
Even though acting is not speaking, it is a form of protected speech because acting is a form of