A Massachusetts State Democratic lawmaker wants to make it illegal in the Bay State to maliciously call someone a “bitch.”
H.3719, “An Act Regarding the Use of Offensive Words,” was introduced by Rep. Daniel J. Hunt from Boston last May. It was assigned to the Massachusetts legislature’s Judiciary Committee, which held a hearing on it Tuesday.
The bill states that “a person who uses the word ‘bitch’ directed at another person to accost, annoy, degrade or demean the other person shall be considered to be a disorderly person.” Violators of the law would face a $150 maximum fine for the first offense, while repeat offenders would face up to six months in jail and a $200 fine.
Rep. Hunt said he filed it after being asked to do so by a constituent, telling the Boston Herald that “In this instance, someone asked me to file a bill that they deemed was important and I thought it was a good exercise to let that bill go through the process.” He defended it on First Amendment grounds by saying that it will “illuminate the exhaustive legislative process for people that might not normally be engaged.” (RELATED: Progressive Author Urges ‘Normal People’ To Stop Wearing Red Baseball Caps Because They Remind Her of MAGA Hat)
The proposed legislation was mocked by the Massachusetts Republican Party as government overreach and a violation of free speech in a series of tweets:
— MassGOP (@massgop) October 21, 2019
Do you believe free speech matters? Tired of @massdems dictating what you can say?
Judiciary Committee will be taking this up tomorrow at 1 pm.
— MassGOP (@massgop) October 22, 2019