Case law has proven that the 1st Amendment gives a private citizen the right to criticize public officials. In fact, a public official's retaliation against an individual exercising his or her First Amendment right is a federal violation. It seems apparent that a city councilman recently violated this federal statute. Pompously, at a recent city meeting, this same council member publicly announced trite accounts of antiquated misdemeanors — which by today’s standards, would probably be thrown out in a court of law — which appeared in a public speaker’s past. Nevertheless, the real crime lies not with the speaker, but with the act of the council member.
The values underlying our 1st Amendment protect us from retaliation “by those equipped with a greater institutional power,” according to the Ohio State Law Journal. Without such protection, no one would ever speak. Leadership that refutes this is something to be feared.
When John Drayman, incumbent on the council, dished a little dirt (“Mohill was the one who started this mess,” March 20), it only left mud on his face.
A question on corporate taxes
Reading Gary Huerta's April 5 column “Taxes, tax breaks and the American way” caused me to get behind the computer and write.
I am not against taxes, but I'd like to know why big corporations such as General Electric, Wal-Mart, oil companies and banks who make billions in profits pay no federal taxes or get huge refunds (according to the media), and yet we “little people” should pay taxes to balance the budget?
Hope someone has a good answer.