This is a case of a city’s anti-discrimination ordinance overriding the U.S. Constitution.
Most of us are unaware that the First Amendment to the Constitution has been flagrantly compromised by a city’s anti-discrimination ordinance. In this case, the New York City Human Rights Law.
Last week, New York City’s Commission on Human Rights declared that using the term “illegal alien” pejoratively to describe an undocumented person violates laws designed to protect employees and tenants from discrimination, and could result in fines of up to $250,000.
How long before “merely calling someone an illegal alien on the street, or threatening to call Immigration and Customs Enforcement on them, [becomes] illegal”?
The author at Reason seems to have confidence the above won’t occur, writing that, “It’s important to note that this guidance does not affect all kinds of speech: The law covers workplace harassment, tenants’ rights, and public accommodation.”
More moderate fluff from Reason:
The government cannot simply prohibit people from making politically incorrect statements about undocumented people—it must limit the scope of anti-discrimination mandates in order to satisfy the broad free speech guarantees enjoyed by all people.
Just you wait.
A way more principled analysis—as principled as the positive law can be—is Eugene Volokh’s. He has determined that “constitutionally protected speech [does not] lose its protection because of the speaker’s supposedly improper purpose.”
Also way better than the milquetoast Reason Magazine is “NYC Seeks to Curb Speech About Illegal Aliens” by Hans Bader.
Thinking of the Constitution as the supreme law of the land is just silly. Any vestiges of the natural law in the Constitution have long since been buried under the rubble of legislation and statute.