Civil Liberties

Hutaree Defendants Released on Bond


A big development in the Hutaree case:

A federal judge in Detroit today ordered the release of nine members of a Lenawee County Christian militia group freed on bond over the objections of federal prosecutors.

"The United States is correct that it need not wait until people are killed before it arrests conspirators," U.S. District Judge Victoria Roberts said in a decision this morning. "But, the Defendants are also correct: their right to engage in hate-filled, venomous speech, is a right that deserves First Amendment protection."

She said federal prosecutors failed to persuade her that the defendants must be jailed until trial.

Needless to say, this has substantial implications for how the trial itself may play out.

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  1. It’s OK. They’ll get picked up for some other bogus charge. The government gets its way. It is a felony to have a burned out light in your glove box, isn’t it?

    1. No, but having an unregistered handgun in your car is. And stealing it from the police evidence locker is another felony, but they probably won’t get charged for that.

      1. What’s a “registered handgun”?
        All ours here in GA are “un-registered”.
        Unless they are machine guns or short-barreled shotguns that is.

  2. Wow, did a Reason staffer actually post an article showing government doing something right?

    Pinch me


      1. Or at least say something worthwhile, like “We’re going to dance our asses off!”

    2. That’s a silly way to look at it. The Prosecutor who wanted bond denied is an agent of the government too.

    3. Pinch Junk Punch me


  3. “But, the Defendants are also correct: their right to engage in hate-filled, venomous speech, is a right that deserves First Amendment protection.”

    The terrorists… lost?

  4. Bwuhahaha, I’ll have to watch MSNBC tonight! Mathews/Olberman/Maddow will be shrieking! “Aggghhhh! The Teabaggers will kill us aaaalllll!!!!!”

    1. Combined with the possibly white NY bomber, those shows may be epic the next few days.

      1. Didn’t Al-Qaeda take credit for that?

        1. Yeah, but the feds were dismissing it, until a little while ago…now they’re grudging admitting “international connections”.

          Goddamn truth, it fucks up a good story don’t it?

  5. This was such a huge case to the FBIs. So important. So well done.

    On Tuesday, Roberts grew irritated as “FBI special agent Leslie Larsen, who said she led the two-year investigation, testified that she couldn’t answer many questions about the allegations because she hadn’t reviewed her reports recently.”

    1. Investigations are hard!!

      1. Sexist!

  6. Threadjack

    This actually makes sense and almost makes me like the movie.

    My favorite thought-piece about Ferris Bueller is the “Fight Club” theory, in which Ferris Bueller, the person, is just a figment of Cameron’s imagination, like Tyler Durden, and Sloane is the girl Cameron secretly loves.

    One day while he’s lying sick in bed, Cameron lets “Ferris” steal his father’s car and take the day off, and as Cameron wanders around the city, all of his interactions with Ferris and Sloane, and all the impossible hijinks, are all just played out in his head. This is part of the reason why the “three” characters can see so much of Chicago in less than one day — Cameron is alone, just imagining it all.

    It isn’t until he destroys the front of the car in a fugue state does he finally get a grip and decide to confront his father, after which he imagines a final, impossible escape for Ferris and a storybook happy ending for Sloane (“He’s gonna marry me!”), the girl that Cameron knows he can never have.


    1. I’m going to be clear on this: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off is an utterly overrated movie. It’s just not that good. And I like John Hughes, a lot. And a pre-emptive FUCK YOU to all the Bueller fanbois out there.

      1. I could be the walrus. I’d still have to bum rides off people.

        1. VLADIMIR L, not John L, ProGLib.

          1. I liked Lenin’s “Imagine.” He wanted it to be the Soviet anthem, but it went underground until rediscovered by some obscure musical performer in the 1970s.

      2. I think it is totally overrated movie. Ferris is a little shit who basically ruins his friends life. But if it is looked at like the above quote, it actually is pretty good. Had Hughes been a more imaginative film maker, he would have made the movie less obvious and left a few clues that made you wonder if Ferris even existed. It would have made for a much better movie.

        1. Ferris can only “not exist” if Cameron is the only other character in the movie.

          Why would Jennifer Grey imagine a brother that doesn’t exist? And is the same person that Cameron is imagining?

          You can’t cut those parts out, those are really the best part of the movie. The vagina dentata sister and her day of rage is very entertaining.

          1. Maybe Ferris does exist but is a snot who never talks to Cameron. Ferris and his sister went to school that day. Meanwhile, Cameron wanders around imagining that he is friends with the woman he love’s boyfriend and engaging in all of the hijinks.

          2. And why would the school principal do jail time for child molestation.

            Wait, that wasn’t the movie.

      3. It’s enjoyable fluff and nothing more. But enjoyable fluff counts.

        1. Sure, I like enjoyable fluff. I love Bill and Ted’s. But Day Off didn’t even rise to that level. I was, and remain to this day, utterly unimpressed with that movie. When he sang “Danke Schoen” I should have been enjoying myself, and I just wasn’t.

          Real Genius is a great movie for this kind of stuff. But Day Off rates with Gross Anatomy instead. Sorry, it’s true.

          1. Gross Anatomy had Daphne Zuniga, who was a goddess in her day. That lone puts it above Ferris. And I like fluff to. But I found Ferris to just be grating. I couldn’t help but root for his sister.

          2. Then your problem is you.

          3. I’ll agree to this extent: Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure and Real Genius were superior movies in the genre.

            1. I don’t think so. I would say 16 Candles, Better off Dead and Fast Times at Ridgemont High were superior movies of that genre.

              1. Nah, Real Genius is better than those.

                Though I have been known to say, “Two dollars!”

                1. Fast Times is the greatest teenager movie ever. It is so well written. That movie really is too good to even be fairly considered in the class. It is more than fluff. It is a really good movie.

                  1. I feel about that the way Episiarch feels about Ferris.

                    De gustibus non est disputandum.

                    1. You philistine.

                    2. Actually, that’s Latin.

                  2. That’s a classic, and it had many soon to be stars.

            2. Ditto, but I dont think they are the same genre. But, being behind those doesnt lessen Ferris. However, I always found the Danke Schoen scene to be the weakest part of the movie.

            3. Ferris Bueller > Real Genius > Bill & Ted

              I like all 3, but Ferris tickles me more than the other 2. Plus, I really OD’d on Real Genius when it was on HBO all those years ago. Still tough to watch it as I want to reach through and strangle Kent, who bugs me to no end.

              Of course, this is all pish-posh. The bigger question is who is better? Jeffrey Jones or William Atherton?

              1. They are both colossi that bestrode asshole acting in their day. Though it sounds like Jones is a massively messed up person.

              2. “You’re all just a bunch of degenerates.”

                “We are? What about that time I found you naked with that bowl of jello?”

                “I was hot and I was hungry!”

                1. A fine, fine film.

          4. I thought Ferris was ok, but I also have to agree it was overrated. Real Genius, Better Off Dead, and Weird Science are all far better movies.

      4. “There’s someone you should talk to.”

    2. “Nine times.”

    3. Some other movies get better with this kind of treatment.

      Star Wars, farm boy orphan goes crazy and kills his aunt and uncle and leaves the planet to justify his crime.

      1. Oh shit – that is hilarious.

      2. Haha, and C3-PO and R2D2 are constructs of his imagination.

        “Okay, dear, you go take care of your new robots. Bye Lukey! Owen, what robots? Is something wrong with Luke?”

    4. Ferris Buellar is one of the reasons I gave up movies.

  7. Sad when a judge has more use for free speech than the ACLU.

    1. Was the ACLU against this or something?

      1. See the ACLU’s recent change of heart on campaign finance.

  8. Wow, did a Reason staffer actually post an article showing government doing something right?

    Hey now! They gave of the Tale of the Reasonable (drink!) Signage Bureaucrat just the other the day.

    Obviously they’re setting us up for some very bad indeed.

  9. “But, the Defendants are also correct: their right to engage in hate-filled, venomous speech, is a right that deserves First Amendment protection.”

    Nice. Did the Defendants actually use the term “hate-filled, venomous speech”, or is Judge Roberts making it tougher to find an impartial jury?

    1. Now see, Rich actually makes a legit point here…the judge was out of line by adding her opinion of the speech being protected.

      1. You boys are both wrong. My right to engage in hate-filled, venomous speech, [sic] is a right that deserves First Amendment protection.

  10. This might be the smallest, most unconstitutional speech zone ever


  11. From the Freep article:”Robert said the defendants also must provide a list of names, addresses, and phone numbers for all Hutaree members and members of any other militia groups they associated with.”

    What? Is this common? How can they be forced to give info on OTHER militia groups?

    1. No. It is called self incrimination. You don’t have to tell the Cops anything.

    2. When deciding to grant bail, a judge has some leeway on making conditions. The defendants don’t have to do it, unless they want to be free until a verdict is read.

      Not saying that I agree with this, though.

    3. She should just google SPLC.

  12. Hey, this is GREAT!
    Good thing Reno is gone; she’d just have them shot rather than arresting them and chancing a judge who might have read the Constitution.

  13. Living in SE Michigan I can’t help but follow this story. Are they whackjob right wing terrorists or just gullible hate filled loser hicks set up and encouraged by an overzealous FBI?

    I’m leaning towards the latter.

    1. Me to. I don’t trust the FBIs as far as I can throw them.

    2. Based on the evidence released so far, looks like the latter.

      Unless BOTH sides are hiding something relevant until trial.

      1. I’m in the “both” camp. Surely both sides have something to hide, though it seems pretty conspicuous that these guys were arrested at just the right time to associate fringe groups like the Hutaree to not fringe groups like the tea party.

        It’s easier to demonize the tea party types if an “argument” (read: accusation) can be made that if left unchecked you get guys who want to kill cops and start revolutions in the name of christ.

    3. As a SE MI’er, too (on the weekends when I’m not in OH), ditto. I figured the whole time it was the latter.

      I just don’t think there are enough truly smart people in SE MI to create a critical mass of brains to actually be an effective anti-gov’t group. I mean, c’mon, I’ll hold myself up as Exhibit A…

      Ergo – whack jobs.

  14. Because the government lies about you doesn’t make you a “whack-job”.

    They did nothing illegal and their speech and guns are all protected as their rights.

    The government lied about Charles Dyer and after 3 months he was released and found totally innocent. Same will happen here. After spending millions of dollars trying to manufacture guilt that is.

    Maybe if the liars in the FBI were paying attention to the Times Square bomber, as they said they were instead of framing innocent people then there might not of been an almost disaster.

    Why do people hate/loath the government? This is a perfect example.

    No one from any part of the politcal spectrum is safe. Yesterday is was peace activists, today Hutaree, tommorrow you.

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