"The city of Paris will start removing padlocks from the Pont des Arts on Monday, effectively ending the tourist tradition of attaching 'love locks' to the bridge. For years, visitors have been attaching locks with sentimental messages to the bridge in symbolic acts of affection. Some further seal the deal by throwing keys into the Seine River below. It was considered charming at first, but the thrill wore off as sections of fencing on the Pont des Arts crumbled under the locks' weight. The bridge carries more than 700,000 locks with an estimated combined weight roughly the same as 20 elephants."
Always consider the source, but it's an interesting question: is the Holder Memo reasonable in this? Should we be interested in collateral damage? Should we reward companies that cooperate and later admit guilt after fixing the problems? Should this include only fines and no imprisonment?
Today's decision properly recognizes that the law has for centuries required the government to prove criminal intent before putting someone in jail. That principle is especially important when a prosecution is based on a defendant's words. The Internet does not change this long-standing rule. While today's decision insists on fairness, it is not a license to threaten, which remains illegal when properly proved.
Rob Duke's insight:
I personally don't buy it. These guys do this to threaten and intimidate and FB is not like him telling a buddy that he hates his Ex. This type of communication is out there and has ways of connecting to his Ex. This also gives an incentive for a potential attacker to make threats and then say "JK, that was art" and then the cops not be able to do anything.
The responsible reaction is for state legislatures to take up the task of drafting law that recognizes True Threat Doctrine, but specifically defines these type of threats as something different. The intent shouldn't be required to show the threat was intended to be followed up on, just a presumed intent if any reasonable person would understand that their threats could be interpreted as verbal terrorism, etc.
Early one weekend morning, just after the nightclubs had closed, three young white men ambled into the harsh fluorescent light of a South African takeout food franchise. They whistled at the staffers, all of them black, tugged their clothing and pulled their caps askew. When customers Sikhulekile Duma and two fellow black students told them to stop, they said people who didn't speak Afrikaans didn't belong there.
There is now pending legislation in the United States Senate and the U.S. House involving the diversion of justice-involved individuals with behavioral health disorders from standard prosecution. Both bills use the Sequential Intercept Model (SIM), developed by Mark Munetz and Patty Griffin in collaboration with Hank Steadman, as an organizing tool to help structure the proposed law. What is the SIM? How can it be used?
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