The Civility Debate Overlooks the First Amendment

While dining recently at a Mexican restaurant in Washington, DC, a friend of activist Amanda Werner recognized that Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen was dining there as well. The friend “immediately texted Werner: ‘DHS Secretary Nielsen is having dinner at MXDC. Can you tweet on your account? Get activists here.’”

Werner put the word out on Twitter and, within minutes, a handful of activists showed up, including members of the Democratic Socialists of America. When they entered the restaurant and saw Nielsen, they confronted her about the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" policy on immigration. “How dare you spend your evening here eating dinner as you’re complicit in the separation and deportation of over 10,000 children,” one protester shouted. Others chanted, “Abolish ICE! Abolish ICE!” “If kids don’t eat in peace, you don’t eat in peace!,” and “Kirstjen Nielsen, you’re a villain, locking up immigrant children.” After about fifteen minutes, the activists left.