While I'm at it (specifically, while I'm at www.thefirstamendment.org), here's some more (possible) abuse of power by Rick Santorum's flunkies
I personally find it very hard to believe that two different sets of teenagers came up with such similar stories.
Anyway, this story has only shown up in two locations online (delawareonline.com and Queer Filter), but airamericablog.com has a comment about it, and (supposedly) Mary Ellen Keating, the PR manager of Barnes & Noble replied to an e-mail questioning B&N about the situation with this:
"From what I have been told at this point, a state police officer at the scene took charge of the incident and made the determination to remove the students from the store. The Barnes & Noble management team was not consulted nor did they have anything to do with removing the students from the store. It is our opinion that the situation was completely mishandled."
However, MEK's name can easily be found off the B&N website, so until there's something more concrete, don't take this at face value. It could be incorrect or even made-up.
On the other hand...
For my second piece, here's a transcript of a Rick Santorum inverview on FOX News
HUME: Constitutional amendment that would define marriage as a union between a man and woman; needed?
SANTORUM: I think the president said we're looking at it. And John Cornyn, who's the head of the Constitution Subcommittee in the United States Senate, is going to have a hearing on that in September to determine whether if Massachusetts and New Jersey come forward with establishing a constitutional right ...
HUME: Within those states?
SANTORUM: Well, they may do it on the basis of the U.S. Constitution. And if that's the case, then clearly there is a potential for a constitutional amendment to change that, because if Massachusetts decides that there is a U.S. constitutional right, then others -- people from other states can go to Massachusetts, get married and come back and claim that they should be permitted in other states.
HUME: And one presumes you would support that.
SANTORUM: If that's what's needed, I think that, as the president said ...
HUME: You say needed.
SANTORUM: Well, if it's needed to stop the spread of homosexual marriage, I think the answer is yes.
And then, take a gander at this set of quotes
out of his book, It Takes A Family
. It's about pornography and the use of the words "free speech" in general.Privacy. Neutrality. Free Expression. None of these terms is in the Constitution. They “look like” terms that actually are there. Freedom from “unreasonable searches and seizures”: That’s in the Fifth Amendment. “Equal protection of the laws”: That’s in the Fourteenth Amendment. “Freedom of speech”: That’s in the First Amendment. That is why liberals believe what they are doing is merely refining the intentions of our founders, making explicit the underlying philosophical tenets of our Constitution. The problem is that these “philosophical” tenets are pure abstractions, fit only for those great abstractions, “liberal individuals.” But the U.S. Constitution was the fruit of long experience in the great complexity and wisdom of English common law.