POLICE FAN PAGE BRINGS FIRST AMENDMENT LAWSUIT
Honolulu, Hawaii – Today in the Federal District Court of Hawaii, the Hawaii Defense Foundation has filed a lawsuit for violations of the First Amendment. The Defendants in this case are the City and County of Honolulu and a Honolulu Police Officer, Capt. Andrew Lum.
The complaint filed in the United States District Court by attorneys Richard Holcomb, Alan Beck, and Brian Brazier alleges that the Honolulu Police unlawfully administer their Facebook Fan page in violation of American citizen’s right to free speech. The complaint asserts that the Honolulu police arbitrarily moderate the page by deleting comments and banning users who post or make comments unfavorable to the department. The complaint further asserts that online speech is just as important as a citizen airing their grievance in a public park – just because the speech is virtual, doesn’t mean it is not protected.
“The First Amendment protects the right to free speech. Without question, social media has become a cornerstone for communication in the days of iPads, smart phones, and computers. In fact, online speech, within sites like Facebook, is utilized every day by citizens, businesses, and government agencies to communicate with the public at large.
The online world appears to truly be the go to medium for a citizen to share ideas and voice their opinions on a wide variety of topics. Across the globe, social media has been at the forefront of communication during natural disasters, revolts against tyranny, and civil protest; few methods of speech see more activity than Facebook and Twitter. We have already seen governments infringe online speech. Just look at countries like China or Egypt, who have at times prohibited these sites in order to silence their citizens into submission. Deleting comments and banning people from expressing their opinion is simply an act of oppression. However, we are not China, nor Egypt. American citizens have a voice, and these practices must stop.” says Chris Baker.
Hawaii Defense Foundation (www.TheHDF.org) is 501.c (3) charity in Honolulu, Hawaii. The Foundation serves the community by providing various services, such as: legal defense of civil rights, educational courses on firearm safety, self-defense training, and life saving techniques – such as first aid and CPR.
If you would like to show your support or are looking for additional information please contact the Foundation at (808) 664-1827 or info@TheHDF.org.
The filed documents can be viewed here: