Skip to content

“Never Newt”: Gingrich Opposes American Values of Due Process and Freedom of Speech

There is a #NeverNewt on Twitter. I agree with the #NeverNewters, although Gov. Mike Pence and Gov. Chris Christie are just as bad as far as I’m concerned. The #NeverNewters are saying no to Newt Gingrich for VP under a Donald Trump Presidency.

Why #NeverNewt? Most recently, Newt Gingrich suggested bringing back the House Un-American Activities Committee, to deal with “radical Islam.” Which it wouldn’t do, of course, as it would merely punish and persecute dissenters.

The House Un-American Activities Committee investigated alleged “subversive” and “disloyal” speech and political activism during the mid-20th Century. They “outed” people who had maintained or expressed communist-sympathizing views, and caused the blacklisting of many actors and musicians because of their views, which were seen as disloyal to the United States.

We are seeing a lot of this kind of intolerance toward dissent, in which people who criticize the U.S. government’s terrible policies are seen as “un-American,” even though it’s the other way around: the “un-American” ones are those who are intolerant and who want to censor and banish dissenters, whether the dissent pertains to war, civil rights, climate change, or LGBT perversity.

One of the most American of values is the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which protects the individual’s right to dissent and to express his dissent publicly without fear of being thrown in jail, getting beat up or killed. Obviously Newt Gingrich does not understand this most American of values. He in fact opposes it.

At a November, 2011 Presidential debate with Gingrich and his fellow Republicans, he was asked about Obama’s drone-assassination of alleged terrorist supporter Anwar al-Awlaki. Questioner Scott Pelley asked Gingrich how Obama could have the authority to kill al-Awlaki without due process, given that he was only a suspect and not an actual convicted terrorist. Gingrich stated that al-Awlaki actually was found guilty, by “a panel that looked at it and reported to the President,” even though it was a White House secret panel that “looked at it” and everything was kept secret with no evidence brought to the public to prove guilt. The U.S. government mainly had drone bombers murder someone based on his criticism of the government, which violates one’s right to freedom of speech and dissent as well as one’s right to due process.

To show his lack of understanding of one of the most of American values as presumption of innocence, Gingrich said at that debate, “If you engage in war against the United States, you are an enemy combatant.  You have none of the civil liberties of the United States…You cannot go to court.”

But it was never proven that he “engaged in war against the United States.” Government bureaucrats accused him of engaging in war but they never showed evidence and his was never actually convicted of it. This is the very reason why people have “civil liberties” first, and then if you have evidence against them, then you act, within a system of due process. That’s the American way. It might not be the Soviet communist way, but it is the American way. I am sorry that, like most statists, Republican and Democrat, Gingrich doesn’t understand that, or just outright rejects it.

And this right to civil liberties and due process, and presumption of innocence, by the way, is a human right. Morally and ethically it doesn’t even matter if al-Awlaki was an American citizen. The right to life and liberty are unalienable rights. They are inherent in all of us as human beings.

Every human being has an inherent, unalienable right to liberty, and thus a right to require any accuser to provide evidence against him and a right to respond to the accusations and present evidence in his own defense. It doesn’t matter if the accuser is a government bureaucrat. It doesn’t matter if the accuser is the President of the United States. And it doesn’t matter if the accused is an American citizen, or a foreigner. And it doesn’t matter what the crime is that the accused person is being accused of, whether it’s supporting terrorism, murder, mass murder, and so on.

A lot of statists and authoritarians do not agree with that. Like Gingrich, the statists want the U.S. government to have the power and authority to arrest, detain, jail, torture, or assassinate whomever the agents of the Regime accuse of some criminal act. Until President Hillary wants to target them for their dissent, for their criticism of the government, like the IRS targeted conservatives, and like other federal agencies have been targeting dissenters. So, if you are opposed to commies, Mr. Speaker, stop acting like one of them.

Unfortunately, authoritarians like Donald Trump agree with Gingrich in his un-American, anti-due process views, and this collectivist way of thinking.

Gingrich seems to believe that being critical of the idiot bureaucrats of the U.S. government and military is “disloyal” or “subversive,” even though in many ways it is they in the  government and military who have been subversive, as they have been subverting the very Constitution they were sworn to uphold, protect and obey, with wars of aggression and occupations and murders of innocents, the NSA, the NDAA, ObamaCare, and on and on.

The recent Chilcot Report noted that former British PM Tony Blair was made aware of and forewarned that going into war against Iraq in 2003 would result in blowback including terrorist attacks against the U.K.

As Glenn Greenwald points out, that is exactly what happened when London subways were attacked in 2005 by bombs.

Nobody should need official reports or statements from attackers to confirm what common sense makes clear: If you go around the world for years proclaiming yourself “at war,” bombing and occupying and otherwise interfering in numerous countries for your own ends — as the U.S. and U.K. have been doing for decades, long before 9/11 — some of those who identify with your victims will decide — choose — to retaliate with violence of their own. Even Tony Blair’s own Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott acknowledged this self-evident truth in 2015: “When I hear people talking about how people are radicalized, young Muslims — I’ll tell you how they are radicalized. Every time they watch the television where their families are worried, their kids are being killed or murdered and rockets, you know, firing on all these people, that’s what radicalizes them.”

So of course dissidents and non-interventionists should point out and criticize very strongly the government when it is the government which acts aggressively and belligerently against foreigners, and provokes those foreigners to act against the people those bureaucrats are in charge of “protecting.”

But Gingrich wants to criminalize dissent and criticism of the Regime and its criminals and murderers, as well as those who kill people without charges or due process. How extremely un-American. Perhaps if there is to be a House un-American Activities Committee, New Gingrich could be brought before it.

#NeverNewt? You bet.

Published inUncategorized