Anti-Free Speech groups such as “By Any Means Necessary” as well as Antifa have been trying to use the law in a rather unusual way as a means to silence what they consider their opposition.
Take Yvette Felarca, for example. She’s a leader in the “By Any Means Necessary” group. They’ve promoted using violence, among other tactics, as a way to meet their goals. Interestingly, she levied a restraining order against Troy Worden, a UC Berkeley student and officer of the Berkeley College Republicans.
A restraining order that ultimately had nothing to back it up once Worden’s attorney’s got ahold of it.
Felarca herself has been arrested twice recently on serious charges of felony incitement of riot, and of resisting arrest and attacking a peace officer.
The temporary restraining order was initially granted simply upon Felarca’s request and false allegations that Worden was stalking and harassing her by his exercise of free speech on the campus. A little-known fact about restraining orders is that they greatly restrict individuals’ First and Second Amendment rights. Not only was Worden required to avoid Felarca’s general location, he was unable to touch or possess a firearm during the pendency of the order.
While last week’s verdict is a victory for free speech over Felarca and BAMN, this is not over. The Troy Worden Legal Defense fund has been created to help fund the legal effort to push back against BAMN.
Meuser claims he has gathered enough evidence to make a compelling case that Antifa, By Any Means Necessary, and the attorneys representing these groups have been conspiring to use the law to harass, intimidate, and use force to shut down free speech. The Dhillon Law Group, where Meuser practices, says they have been approached by other potential plaintiffs they could bring into an offensive lawsuit against the anti-free speech organizations.