Now that Harvey Hunter of Stuart, Iowa, has been charged with first-degree harassment for a voicemail, calling for Gov. Kim Reynolds to be “hung for treason,” he is claiming his comment is protected under the First Amendment. And he didn’t mean it literally anyway. And when it comes right down to it, he actually likes her.

The Constitution is vague about free speech, saying, “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech or of the press….” So could this mean the highest law of the land gives us permission to blather without consequences?

Mr. Hunter has made it clear he is no liberal. He is sympathetic to some of the QAnon conspiracies and considers himself a conservative. He explained that his problem with Gov. Reynolds is that she caved into pressure to impose a limited mask mandate. He said, “I was a big fan of Gov. Reynolds until she started stepping on everyone’s rights and freedoms.” (Like trying to prevent Iowans from catching a deadly disease?) Of course, “Covid Kim” soon lifted the restriction, leaving such life-and-death decisions up to everyone’s suspect judgement.

In his curse-laden rant to Reynolds, Hunter said, “…you need to be put in front of a firing squad.” Iowa doesn’t have the death penalty and it certainly doesn’t have a firing squad. And although Iowans generally frown on such vulgar language, it could be argued that when Hunter called for the governor’s execution, he was just talking out of his hat. But he wasn’t talking through his mask. In fact, he thanked officials at the Polk County jail when they didn’t make him wear one.

Brendon Hunt of New York seemed surprised when he was recently convicted of threatening lawmakers, following the release of his Jan. 8 video titled, “Kill Your Senators. Slaughter Them All.” Okay, I would agree that sounds bad. But now Hunt, 37, the son of a retired judge and an avid comic book collector, insists he didn’t mean it, admitting he is “immature.” He confessed, “I had made that video one night when I had been having a bunch of beers, smoking a little weed, taken a few bong rips and I kind of did this spur-of-the-moment video, just spewing out some rhetoric, and I didn’t think anything was wrong at the time.” Hunt now faces up to 10 years in prison.

You can bet that Old Testament King Herod had been hitting the sauce during his birthday party when he promised Salome up to half his kingdom if she would dance for him. Did he really mean what he said or was he just talking some boozy baloney? It’s too bad that Herod’s accountant hadn’t been there to overhear the offer and quickly adjust Salome’s payment commensurate with her performance. It was too bad for King Herod that words do have consequences. And too bad for John the Baptist.

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