The following piece was published in the Times Union on April 3, 2017. Click here to view the full article.
By Rahul Saksena
As opponents of the Trump agenda take to the streets in record numbers, it is crucial for state and local lawmakers to stand firm in support of the right to dissent.
But earlier this month, as thousands of New Yorkers went on strike for International Women’s Day, the New York Senate fastracked and passed – with no public input or oversight – three anti-protest bills. The bills resurrect widely-condemned tactics used to undermine democracy: creating McCarthyite political blacklists, attacking academic freedom, and cracking down on student organizing.
Unlike the Republican-backed anti-protest bills popping up across the country, the three New York bills passed with support from most Senate Democrats, including the Democratic Conference Leader, Andrea Stewart-Cousins, and the breakaway Independent Democratic Conference, led by Senator Jeffrey Klein.