Second Lawsuit Filed Challenging Pa. Law Restricting Speech

CBS Philly

By Cherri Gregg

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The ACLU has filed a first amendment lawsuit against Pennsylvania’s Attorney General and the Philadelphia District Attorney, challenging what they’re calling the “Silencing Act.”

As it turns out, convicted cop killer Mumia Abu-Jamal filed to strike the same law in November.

The Revictimization Relief Act was signed into law by Governor Tom Corbett just weeks after Mumia Abu-Jamal gave a recorded commencement speech to a Vermont College. The law allows victims to sue their offenders for any conduct that causes “mental anguish”…including speech.

“This law is just simply unconstitutional under the first amendment, you just cannot restrain speech in this manner,” explains Vic Walczak, legal director of the ACLU of Pennsylvania.

Walczak represents the plaintiffs, which include the Philadelphia City paper, as well as journalists and ex-offenders no longer in prison.

“It’s going to prevent the journalists from reporting what’s going on…

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