We Don't Need No First Amendment


More than a quarter of the 247 residents of Blythewood, South Carolina, recently received a court order to pay the costs for the court to determine whether proposed new ordinances are legal. Those who received the order just happened to be people who had petitioned the town to adopt those ordinances. The petitioners want the town to impose licensing fees on businesses that make more than $1 million in gross income, to impose impact fees on businesses, and to require town planning commissioners to live in the city limits. The city says it isn't clear if it has the power to do those things, and it's only fair to ask those who want the changes to pay for efforts to find out if it has those powers. But the petitioners say it's an attempt to intimidate them.