Justin Herdman, the US attorney for the Northern District of Ohio, has announced one count of transmitting threatening communications via interstate commerce against James Reardon, a self-described white nationalist- who is accused of threatening an Ohio Jewish center.
Reardon’s Instagram account was filled with anti-Semitic slurs and racist rhetoric.
According to CNN, Reardon even posted a video of a man shooting a rifle amid sirens and screams. It was tagged to the Jewish Community Center of Youngstown, captioned, “Police identified the Youngstown Jewish Family Community shooter as local white nationalist Seamus O’Rearedon,” which is an Irish Gaelic version of his family name.
In turn, Herdman, the federal prosecutor, wanted to send a clear and direct message to any other “white nationalists” who subscribe to Reardon’s racist way of thinking.
“Go ahead and make your case for Nazism, a white nation, and racial superiority,” Herdman said in a press conference. “The Constitution may give you a voice, but it doesn’t guarantee you a receptive audience. Your right to free speech does not automatically mean that people will agree with you. In fact, you have a God-given and inalienable right to be on the losing end of this argument.”
He added, “Threatening to kill Jewish people, gunning down innocent Latinos on a weekend shopping trip, planning and plotting to perpetrate murders in the name of a nonsense racial theory, sitting to pray with God-fearing people who you execute moments later – those actions don’t make you soldiers, they make you cowards. And law enforcement does not go to war with cowards who break the law, we arrest them and send them to prison.”
Herdman acknowledged that the Constitution protected the rights for white supremacists and white nationalists to speak, think, and believe their “hatred and failed ideologies.” However, he made it clear that though it may be okay to express one’s beliefs, but they should prepare to face the possibility of serious consequences.