Reagan National Airport Declares Protests Blocking Roadway Access A “First Amendment Right”

The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, which manages both Reagan National airport and Washington Dulles is a disaster and that extends to their public statements about anti-Israel and pro-Hamas protestors blocking access to National airport calling their actions “exercising first amendment rights” in the roadway.

The ACLU agrees, there’s no first amendment right to block traffic.

Indeed, protestors were impeding the constitutional right to travel.

(HT: @crucker)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Only read the title about first amendment right of protesters at airport. Guess it’s also a first amendment right to falsely yell “fire” in a movie theater. NO, it is not! The right to free speech should never deny another’s right to speech, free access, free safety, etc. Pick my words apart but you get the point: one’s freedoms cannot deny mine!

  2. Run over them. My state (NC) even passed a law after the riots of 2020 stating a driver is not responsible for hitting someone blocking a roadway.

  3. This is beyond “yelling fire in a theater.” It is causing the fire! these actions are a danger to the wellbeing of travelers and to the safe functioning of an international airport. It is unsafe and dangerous and I am shocked that the governmental airport authorities are collaborating with supporters of terror and antisemitism. it is not free speech and makes a mockery of our constitutionally rights .a sad day indeed

  4. First Amendment rights do not apply when it comes to endangering the public. Blocking the roads could impede emergency vehicle access due to the stalled traffic. Yelling “FIRE!” in an auditorium creates a stampede (similar to a road blockage) towards the emergency exits. Since DCA is technically located in Virginia, Virginia law enforcement should come in, impound any vehicles and arrest the protestors. The impound fees will be steep and, assuming they are found guilty, the fines should be eye watering.

  5. @Tim – sad that a governmental entity in DC doesn’t understand the first amendment. Can voice their opinion in a public park or similar such space but not on private property or to impede other’s movement in a public roadway. Quite a bit of case law to that effect so not hard to figure it out (except for extreme, likely minority, DC politicians

  6. I can’t help but notice these pro-Palestinian road blockings only take place in favorable jurisdictions–DC, Seattle, SF. I hereby double-dog dare them to do a road blocking on the way to DFW, or MCO, or SLC. At least MLK didn’t pick a politically favorable location to boycott the busses.

  7. So the next time truckers, farmers or anyone with a grievance wants to block DC roads and impede those who are just trying to get to work, what do we do? Arrest them, run them over? Get a grip! It is DC and often to my displeasure we tolerate a lot of demonstration. It is our nature.

  8. Pro-Hamas?

    They are protesting the genocidal murders of 30,000+ humans including nearly 20,000 women and children. But it’s alright to write about it and spread fake news since we are chilling here in ‘Merica

    You don’t have to side with Palestine since you’re a hardcore right-wing Jew … but … stop discounting the murders of tens of thousands and burying it with your Pro-Hamas fake news propaganda.

  9. @SammyFTW

    Perhaps you missed it but on October 7th, 2023, Israel was invaded by Hamas Terrorists and they genocidally murdered 1,400 Israelis.

    Israel therefore invaded Gaza to rid the place of these terrorist’s. This is not genocide. It’s like the US attacking Japan after Pearl Harbor.

    When Hamas (who have been using hospitals and schools for their terrorist infrastructure) surrenders, Israel will stop bombing Gaza and then the Palestinian people will be safe.

    This post is against the illegal protests blocking Americans from getting to their flights.

  10. @SammyFTW: It’s that kind of hectoring and verbal bullying that insures overwhelmingly popular US support for Israel. As for the Palestinians, we fought to gain our freedom. What’s your excuse?

  11. Kind of nice how everything is legalized now isn’t it?
    My advice: load up on ammo. This only gets worse.

  12. @Moe nice way of rationalizing killing that many people. You and I both know Hamas had popular support during the last election but that was a loooong time ago. Now they rule with the gun and smartly spend on both military and social programs. You can destroy their military capability but not an idea. The only way to peace is to provide these people a life where they don’t pick Hamas. That will require difficult decisions, and yes, probably imprisoning a fair number of people in both Palestine and Israel who not only oppose peace but incite violence until peace is well established. However, that is th eonly way forward.

  13. Hamas is so terrible. They are a bunch of terrorists.

    Israel refuses to recognize Palestine’s right to exist. Everyone complains of Hamas refusing to recognize Israel’s right to exist.

    Gaza is so small that Hamas must use any space they have. They don’t have room for a dedicated space like Fort Hood and, besides, Israel wouldn’t allow construction of such a base.

    Hamas is terrible. They aren’t very strong. Israel knows how to kill more people and they are tough.

  14. Oh who the hell cares WHAT side it is? The POINT is nobody should be blocking highways.

    Some of you can’t go 5 seconds without making everything political.

  15. Putting opinions on the larger specific issues at hand, why do people consistently think that in general, ruining one’s day to day life is going to anyone on their side? If their goal is to associate their cause with anarchists, they’ve succeeded.

  16. Pretty sure there is nothing that can make me sympathize with Hamas or the people who cheer them on and hand out candy to celebrate the grotesque mass rape and butchering of innocent civilians over the border in Israel . . . but making me miss my flight certainly won’t do it.

  17. I automatically lose respect for any protest movement that involves blocking roads.

    Make protesting on roads a felony with mandatory minimums.

  18. I wish those bastards would do that in front of my car. I would run their asses over and go on my way. They are terrorists just as those they support.

  19. @anon – exactly! Poisoning our bloodline. Need to finally take action or it will continue to get worse!

  20. The main point is First Amendment is not a right to block public roadways, transit, or interfere with others as they exercise their right to live free of such BS. It is not a right to damage works of art and depriving others of their beauty. These scum bags need to be arrested and sent to jail with lengthy terms. Instead the woke left Democratic cities will look the other way or at best give a wrist slap. Western nations including the US are fast becoming the sh*t hole of the world because we empower this BS. The woke disparages the red states and rural areas of the country. But you note those areas don’t have this BS occurring.

  21. Wow- I don’t know why many people accuse leftwing people of being “snowflakes”, when it’s abundantly clear that right wing people are so much more easily triggered.

    To be clear- blocking a public road is a crime, and the protestors were arrested and cleared at Reagan. As they have been at every other airport and bridges where protestors have blocked traffic.

    Despite most of the commentator’s desire to run down, shoot or otherwise maim the protestors, you can and should go to jail if you kill people. I’d advise everyone to take a chill pill and let the police do their job of clearing the roads.

    As for Red States, protestors shut down the entrances to Love Field on January 10th. It happens pretty much everywhere.

  22. The same people who riot in support of Hamas are the same people who rioted in support of fentanyl floyd.

  23. Hamas is a TERRORIST organization, as stated by Israel. The Palestinian people want their land back & will kill more people. All this madness must be ended, now, permanently.

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