by Mitch Kokai
Senior Political Analyst, John Locke Foundation
Editors at the Washington Examiner highlight the potential long-term negative impact of the political left’s current incivility.
After a California man was charged with attempting to assassinate Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh last month, Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich had a few thoughts: “If everybody’s going to protest everybody who does something at their houses, we’re going to have a very hard time maintaining civil society.”
If only Elrich had the courage to match his convictions.
Supreme Court Marshal Gail Curley sent a letter to Elrich last Friday and requested that he use his power as county executive to enforce Maryland law and end the Left’s new habit of harassing and intimidating Supreme Court justices at their homes.
“Protest activity at justices’ homes, as well as threatening activity, has increased since May,” Curley wrote. “For weeks on end, large groups of protesters chanting slogans, using bullhorns, and banging drums have picketed justices’ homes. … This is exactly the kind of conduct that the Maryland and Montgomery County laws prohibit.”
Curley’s letter cites Maryland Criminal Code Section 3-904(c), which states that “a person may not intentionally assemble with another in a manner that disrupts a person’s right to tranquility in the person’s home,” and Montgomery County Code Section 32-23(a), which says that “a person or group of persons must not picket in front of or adjacent to any private residence.”
Elrich, a Democrat, was unmoved by Curley’s request to protect conservative justices. Instead, Elrich attacked Curley for “using the media” to “further draw attention to the security of the justices’ homes and neighborhoods.” Of course, maybe there wouldn’t be a security problem to begin with if Elrich were to do his job and enforce the laws on the books.
Curley was not just picking on Elrich. She also sent a similar letter to Fairfax County Board of Supervisors Chairman Jeffrey McKay that cites Virginia Code Section 18.2-419, which makes it a criminal offense to engage in protests “before or about the residence or dwelling place of any individual … which disrupts or threatens to disrupt any individual’s right to tranquility in his home.”